Skip to main content

Maybe I'm just not sufficiently wonky on the health care subject, and after all, this isn't likely to happen to me right away, because I have insurance through my wife that I'm pretty sure we're keeping as long as we can. But I don't get how you can possibly hand me a health care bill with an individual mandate and no public option. If I'm uninsured or poorly insured, and the answer coming out of Congress is that I now have to buy crappy insurance from some private company that has no plan to actually help me pay for my health care without raking me over the coals, then I've gone into this fight an ardent supporter of strong reform, and come out a teabagger.

You're going to force me to pay an insurance company for shit insurance that as a free market actor I decided not to even try to buy?

Fuck the hell out of that. Come and get me if you want my money. Paying the government against my will I can understand. It's the government, and it takes things. I might not like it, but I get it. Now, "libertarians" will no doubt scoff haughtily at that, but look, we differ on how much intrusion we'll tolerate. BFD. Welcome to Earth. But if I'm gonna lose that money one way or the other, to my mind it had damn well better be to pay for insurance that actually covers something, and not to be burned on executive bonuses, advertising, or 30% overhead when there's a 4% plan on the market.

Paying an insurance company whose product I don't want? That makes no goddamn sense to me whatsoever, and I want nothing to do with it.

Now, it should come as no surprise that the dingbats at Third Way are pushing this nonsense as a "compromise." As you may have heard me say, I don't believe in a third way. When the chips are down, all third ways are just new excuses for voting for one of the two ways you're allowed in Congress: yea or nay. And while Third Way may get warm in the shorts over a "compromise" that keeps the mandates and chucks the public option, I note that it's once again the DLC and their allies that come up with the plan that has me ready to turn my back on the Democratic Party's Big Plan of the Day.

But keep this in mind: that mandate is already in the bill. It was written in right alongside the public option. So the mandate isn't Third Way's invention, it comes from and has the tacit support of Congressional Democrats, both progressive and otherwise. But if you ask me, it only made sense in a context that included the public option. For Third Way or anyone else to suggest it makes sense all on its own is insanity, and I won't play.

You want your money, you can come and find me and try to take it. But I'm not just going to send it to you, postage paid.

Sensible? Not at all. But I am not sending it to you.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:00 AM PDT.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

    •  There is a discussion going on as to whether (45+ / 0-)

      this "mandate" to buy insurance from the private sector with "help" from the taxpayers would be constitutional.

      If we can be commanded to buy health insurance with the stroke of a pen, what else can we be commanded to do?  Do we all have to go out and buy a new computer, car, appliances if the congress decides we need to help out other industries?  That is what a mandate would do - send 50 million people into the maw of the insurance industry - they can't wait for that!

      I would accept a mandate IF the government required me to buy from the goverment, after all, that is what Medicare is.  But can they require me to buy from the private sector?  I have some real problems with that.  

      •  Any less Constitutional than forced public plan (9+ / 0-)

        mandates?

        That has been my concern for quite some time now.. I have wondered how hard a look at Constitutionality our Congress has taken in regards to the plans they are proposing.

        "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others." - G. Marx

        by Skeptical Bastard on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:32:28 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Remember the cry against "unfunded mandates" (13+ / 0-)

          from the Republicans a few years back when Clinton was putting a few new regs in place?  Now, putting a mandate on folk to buy something they'd rather pay taxes for is being championed by those former protectors of polluting corporations.
          People would rather not put their lives in the hands of government, but they KNOW putting their lives in the hands of insurance companies is INSANE.

          "... it wasn't so much the underworld you had to fear as the overworld." ~Ian Rankin

          by Andhakari on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:39:04 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Technically, (30+ / 0-)

          This is how Social Security works.  It's a government run pension that everyone MUST pay into, with a few exceptions.  But we're paying into a government plan.

          Kagro is right.  They can track me down and toss my butt in jail before they tell me I have to pay a private, for-profit corporation.

          No public option, no $$$ support. No kidding. (kerplunk) Political compass -7.88 -7.03.

          by Heiuan on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:43:33 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  But can they take it out of your check? (6+ / 0-)

            Can it become a deduction just like social security?

            Insurance is a racket...organized, government sanctioned, crime.

            by trinityfly on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:45:00 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  That's what I'd like to see (6+ / 0-)

              I'd like for some economist/number guru who is running the cost figures for these plans to estimate what the system would look like if we raised payroll Medicare tax by 5% and simply covered everyone?

              No public option, no $$$ support. No kidding. (kerplunk) Political compass -7.88 -7.03.

              by Heiuan on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:05:20 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  pretty sure that doesn't come close to working. (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Heiuan

                the reimbursement rates for physicians/hospitals would probably have to be increased too since they wouldn't be able to make up the difference by shifting costs to everyone else.

                nevertheless, i'm also pretty certain that a souped up medicare for all would cost less overall.

                It's not "astroturf," it's an orally transmitted form of spongiform encephalopathy.

                by chicago jeff on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:37:30 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Heh...hence (0+ / 0-)

                  the caveat about having someone who really knows WTH they're talking about, lol.  But I really would like to see what figure emerged if we seriously talked about Medicare for those who want it.

                  No public option, no $$$ support. No kidding. (kerplunk) Political compass -7.88 -7.03.

                  by Heiuan on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 04:23:14 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

              •  enforce taxes on rich, end exemptions/deductions (0+ / 0-)

                I can't crunch all the numbers for you right now, but I'm confident that just getting the rich to pay the 40% of their income they rightfully owe rather than the 17% they get away with after exemptions, deductions and offshore havens, would get us most of the way there.  For the rest, increasing the top marginal income tax rate would be good for everybody, and help even the over-privileged bypreventing future market crashes!

                Invest in wind and solar power now. Either they will offer the greatest ROI within 20 years, or we will all be dead.

                by Reed Young on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:27:28 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  And Make Quarterly Payments to Insurance Cos.? (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              James Kresnik

              That would be rich.  Imagine the headlines.  "Government Makes First Payment of $12 Billion to Insurance Companies".

            •  that's how it's set up. (0+ / 0-)

              if you're employed, it's taken out of your paycheck.
              if you're unemployed, either the govt. picks up the tab or you're exempted.

              that said, your employer picks up the bulk of the cost unless your employer doesn't offer coverage--in which case you're eligible for the exchange and you get to pick which plan you want.

              i'm not sure if the premium's still deducted if you're in the exchange but i think it is.

              It's not "astroturf," it's an orally transmitted form of spongiform encephalopathy.

              by chicago jeff on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:34:11 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  And if you're self-employed, (0+ / 0-)

                and making $1K over the "subsidy cutoff" (which seems pretty low to me), you'd be forced to buy insurance but get no subsidy.

                If you don't, or still can't afford to get any, I imagine the $750 fine would be added into your tax return calculations.  Isn't that special?

                •  are you sure? (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Prognosticator, ZenTrainer

                  is that in HELP or HR3200?

                  Plus, the "subsidy cut-off" in either is over 80k for a family of four in either bill.

                  I believe for self-employed persons your business expenses aren't treated as personal income.  So the $80k would be what you put in the bank (on top of revenue).  Maybe I'm wrong.

                  It's not "astroturf," it's an orally transmitted form of spongiform encephalopathy.

                  by chicago jeff on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 01:38:06 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Yes, we're talking net income (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    chicago jeff

                    after expenses.  But STILL, four times the poverty rate is no great shakes, and a huge hunk of the middle class will not get "help" (subsidy) but a forced new EXPENSE.

                    Sorry, I forget which version it came from, and can't find the article link that summarized each.  But here's a chart of a version where the cutoffs are even less!

                    The version I'm thinking of had the subsidy cutoff for those making over $88K, which was 4x the poverty level of $22,000 for a family of four (which is $5,500 a YEAR for each person to live on - poverty indeed).  

                    I think that $22,000/yr per person (4x that, which is $1,833/mo) is pretty low for "middle class", given a mortgage/rent, transportation (car payment/insurance/fuel), utilities, food, clothes, etc., and add health insurance on TOP of that?

                    And anyone making over $1833 a month won't get a health insurance subsidy, but will be forced to pay at LEAST another $62.50/mo (the $750 "fine"), or whatever their health premium is?

                    I fail to see how this will not burden a huge hunk of (ahem) "middle class" people.

                    •  That's the Senate Finance Committee POC (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Prognosticator

                      POC = Piece of Crap.

                      With the subsidy ending at 300% of the FPL.
                      A truly awful, oppressive plan worth less than nothing at all to people struggling to pay for insurance.

                      Affordability, imo, is a more important issue than the public option, which is very important.

                      It's not "astroturf," it's an orally transmitted form of spongiform encephalopathy.

                      by chicago jeff on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:09:38 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                •  Self Employed... (0+ / 0-)

                  They're going to try to fine me $750 for not giving corporate welfare to a corrupt industry that I reject on moral grounds? When I absolutely refuse to have anything to do with profiteering-driven western medicine at all, so I won't use the (probably crappy) coverage even if on death's doorstep? Are they also forcing Christian Scientists into this lunacy? Or do are they exempt due to mental illness religious convictions?

                  I suppose they can try to fine me, and I'll simply refuse to pay -- I operate my business on a cash basis and if it comes down to it I could survive without any sort of bank account. And then they can jail me when I refuse to pay, ensuring that I cost the taxpayers far more. Fuckers.

                  If I break my finger, I'm able to set and splint it myself. But I'd like x-rays and some mild narcotics. I can't walk in and pay cash for those without seeing an MD for an expensive consultation. If I ever run across an MD who is on fire, I'll tell him to wait while I locate combustion termination consultant.

                  Think I'm kidding? I wanted some simple lab work done a year ago, about something entirely non-life-threatening. I was forced to pay $180 to see a "doctor" for a "consultation", who tried to load on a bunch of other tests that I needed to firmly decline. So the $180 was to get him to order the test, which the lab wouldn't do without the signature of a doctor, even if I were to pay cash up front. So I paid $180 to, in effect, have a doctor read the very simple binary "positive" or "negative" test result needed no interpretation.

                  Hell, I should have done the test myself with a microscope and it would have been cheaper... but I needed "documentation" that I was, in fact, infertile after a vasectomy ages ago that was never followed up on (sorry if that was TMI). At least the lab itself "only" charged about $80.

                  Sorry for the rant.

          •  Technically, SS is an insurance plan..... (5+ / 0-)

            if you become disabled or die before retirement age, SS will pay you or your family benefits.  If you run the race and make it to retirement age, SS was supposed to be a hedge against destitution.  

            Having a small monthly check coming in would give old people a little dignity and relieve their children of some of the burden of providing for older relatives while trying to raise their own families.  

            •  Beg to differ. (0+ / 0-)

              Social Security and Medicare are human welfare programs that pay current benefits from current taxes.  They are not capitalized the way insurance companies have to be -- i.e. "too important to fail" security money. They don't need to be -- they have the government behind them, which by definition is too important to fail.

              •  Judging by AIG, the insurance companies aren't (0+ / 0-)

                properly capitalized.  If they get in trouble they run to the government for money, or file bankruptcy and renig on their obligations.

                Social Security and Medicare are human welfare programs that pay current benefits from current taxes.

                SS is still running a surplus because the boomers have been paying not only for their parents' retirement, but for their own, thanks to Big Ronnie who supposedly never raised taxes.  The biggest hike in taxes in our history was doubling the SS/Med deduction from payroll taxes.

                The problem with SS/med is that the government has been using it as its own personal piggy bank since Johnson.  The Congress and WH have been able to avoid raising taxes appropriately because they have looted SS.  That's why they are screaming now that something has to be done, because the payouts are going to catch up in 2017 or 2040 depending who you believe.

          •  but do you drive a car? (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            zorthron

            That's what they'll do to you if you don't buy private insurance to operate it.... or at least take away your license.

            •  Driving is a priviledge, (0+ / 0-)

              and you CAN opt out of driving and not buy the insurance.

              LIFE is a RIGHT, and you can't easily "opt out" of living, to escape the mandated insurance expense.

              •  I never liked that "driving is a priviledge" meme (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Prognosticator

                If you live in a sprawling Southwestern city where public transportation is scarce, unpredictable, and tedious to use, then the only option to insure your livelihood is through the necessity of owning a car. By extension, you have the right to drive, which can be revoked for criminal offenses. Not at all "a privilege" which smacks of cloying paternalism. Privilege implies things that are arbitrarily granted and suspended by a  ruling elite with no recourse to petition.

            •  that only applies if you *own* a car. (0+ / 0-)

              . . . and cars are treated as weapons by the law.

      •  The individual mandate (37+ / 0-)

        without a public option is contrary to the principles of freedom and democracy. It is nothing more than an updated version of the old feudalism where the public is compelled to pay taxes directly into the coffers of the rich.

        The weak in courage is strong in cunning-William Blake

        by beltane on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:32:32 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  If you don't have/want/buy other insurance (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tmo, tikkun, importer, James Kresnik, CMYK

        you should 'default into' the public option.  

        We're all pretty strange one way or another; some of us just hide it better. "Normal" is a dryer setting.

        by david78209 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:33:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I agree but... (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cdreid, importer, Audri, Nespolo, polar bear

        The government mandates my purchase of private car insurance... for the privilege of driving a car.

        I'm pretty sure my mortgage bank or the government(?) mandates me to purchase private insurance for the privilege of owning my home.

        You could say that car and home ownership are voluntary choices.... but for many people they represent a kind of "necessity".

        There are other cases where government mandates leave no choice but to purchase or use the services of private entities.

        However, I think that your argument does work well in the abstract, as the legal basis for a challenge to a requirement.  I wonder whether it actually could amount to anything in court?

        And politically, yes, I think we can stir up some hornets by pointing out that this is a mandate to purchase the products of the hated "insurance industry."  NOBODY is going to like that.  We can even imagine an "Insurance Resisters" movement.

        Problem is, though, that middle class folks like me, ARE going to buy insurance for our families.  The people who will actually resist?   The very poor?  The very brave?  

        Any way, I'm with you in spirit, but I do wonder how far this argument gets you in actual legal terms.  

        •  But these are not Federally mandated.... (6+ / 0-)

          You could say that car and home ownership are voluntary choices.... but for many people they represent a kind of "necessity".

          Individual states have differing requirements regarding auto insurance, mortgage lenders have differing requirements regarding insurance.  Most of us are going to buy insurance just because we want that protection.  However, states exercise more control over their insurance industries and there are usually several source to shop for what is required, in some cases, people post a bond rather than buy coverage.  

          The problem with a federal mandate for health insurance is that the industry is controlled by a handful of major players who have been raising rates at a dizzying speed and have a large number of senators and congressmen in their pockets.  They not only have no intention of reining in their excesses, they plan on exploiting the public even more egregiously if they get a mandate.  They are already calling for a 65%/35% split on expenses - the customer paying 35% of the actual cost of his treatment.  So for a $20,000 procedure, the insured would owe $7,000 of that even if he is insured!

          This whole idea of taxpayers subsidizing private health insurance premiums is just wrong from the get go.

          •  MA already mandates health insurance (0+ / 0-)

            ..whether you need it or not. There are tax penalties if you do not buy health insurance. And BTW MA is as liberal as you can get and it was pushed by Democratic majorities in MA House and Senate.

            Also there are other mandates that all of us pay: income tax whether we like it being used for some purposes or not (Iraq war anyone ?).

            •  question is (5+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Chi, tikkun, wsexson, Prognosticator, leftneck

              not about mandates.... taxes are mandates.  Question is, mandates to pay a private entity directly... is that legal, and if legal, is it politically sustainable.

              It certainly pisses me off in a way that taxes do not.

            •  The MA system is a total clusterfuck. (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              tikkun, Prognosticator, James Kresnik

              Remember, it was Romney's baby, and it was intentionally designed to be a gift to the insurance industry.  It got the support of democrats in the state legislature because a) many of them are corporatists in the clintonian mold and were comfortable with helping the insurance industry, and b) the progressives in the party were hoping that it could be retooled later to offer higher subsidies to individuals in order to achieve true affordability.  

              Unfortunately, rather than increasing the subsidies or finding other ways to limit cost, they've merely wound up setting up a complex system of waivers and exemptions so that people who can't afford insurance but don't qualify for a subsidy can avoid being penalized.  The whole thing is a glaring example of how NOT to do health care reform.

          •  Not exactly (0+ / 0-)

            Interstate commerce clause. OTR truckers are regulated six ways from sunday. By the states they pass through as well as overriding federal regulations.

          •  I want health CARE, NOT health insurance. (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            tikkun, ZenTrainer, girlsanger

            All this talk about health insurance is bullshite.
            What we need is health care.

            All the real Christians have already been raptured.

            by Audri on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:00:10 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  That's very different. (5+ / 0-)

          Car insurance is required by States so that people operating on public ways are insured if the damage someone else.  They don't care if you insure the value of your own car or not.  Your mortgage company requiring you to insure your house is just a conditon of the contract you enter into with them.  I actually think the mandate aspect of this bill will come back and damage the Democrats a lot.  BO originally did not support an individual mandate.  I think large employer mandates with a robust public option is the way to go.  Provide subsidy to those up to 400% of poverty to assist in buying any insruance they want (establish a minimum requirement).  The public option may or may not be the best option for them but it has to be there at the start of the program.  Drop the individual mandate it is political suicide and really is there to keep the insurance companies happy.  Make it so people want to and can buy insurance, but no mandate.  

          •  If they pass a bill with a mandate, but no (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            tmo, irmaly, Prognosticator, Audri

            public option, I guarantee you they'll lose control of congress and Obama will be a one-term president.  As soon as people find themselves forced by the government to fork over thousands of dollars to insurance companies or else face tax penalties/wage garnishment/etc., you'll see a revolt that'll make the August rallies look tame.  Like Kagro said, it's the one thing that's guaranteed to turn Obama's strongest supporters into teabaggers.  Myself included.

            •  That's why the GOP has been nudging us (0+ / 0-)

              ... toward a bill with a mandate, no public option, and only Democrats voting in favor of it.

              And remember: If you don't like the news, go out and make some of your own. - Scoop Nisker, the Last News Show

              by North Madison on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 04:53:53 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  State mandates for automobile insurance (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tikkun, ryan81

          are a quid pro quo.

          If you drive it on public roads, you must have insurance.

          My dune buggy is a vehicle, I have to register it with the State. The fees are supposed to be used for maintenance of public ORV areas,  but that's another topic. But as it is never driven on public roads, I am not required to have insurance.

          If I gave non-family-members rides in it, it would behoove me to have liability insurance, and if it was worth more money, I'd probably have some kind of comprehensive insurance, but as neither is true, I haven't bought it.

          PMI (private mortgage insurance) is not a matter of law. It is a requirement of the contract I sign with my lender... if my downpayment is too small, I have to buy insurance. It's all private, and nobody has to do it. If you can find a lender that doesn't require it, (yeah, right...) or if you just make a 20% downpayment, you don't have to buy it.

          It's not the same thing.

          --Shannon

          "It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees." -- Emiliano Zapata Salazar
          "Dissent is patriotic. Blind obedience is treason." --me

          by Leftie Gunner on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:37:05 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  A 'kind of' necessity doesn't equal (0+ / 0-)

          actual necessity. No one forces you to buy a home or drive a car as a condition of being alive.

          I see a constitutional class-action lawsuit all over any mandated private-insurance crap.

          You could say that car and home ownership are voluntary choices.... but for many people they represent a kind of "necessity".

          Help thy brother's boat across the stream, and Lo! Thine own has reached the shore. --Hindu proverb

          by CMYK on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:54:20 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Both are easily constitutional (0+ / 0-)

        It simply depends on how they are worded. The state has the power to tax. The state has the power to require things of citizens for the public good (and health.. literally).  There are about fifty other constitutional grounds for it as well. I considered exactly what you are as well but on closer thought realised there are any number of constitutional basis for national healthcare, even mandated.

        Though with this incompetant corrupt SC that seems to literally make shit up as it goes who knows.

        •  yet (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          CMYK

          we have no cases I can think of until now where the state mandates purchase of services from private entities.

          It may grant monopolies (to my local garbage collector, for example)... but I can haul my own trash if I want.

          •  But you're doing the lawyer thing (0+ / 0-)

            or rather the (no insult) hack lawyer thing.

            You're looking for precedent, statute to define constitutional law. Ive had lawyers spend an hour trying to tell me that a statute had precedent and therefore overruled the constitution. Mindnumbing.. (not you!)

            The state has a mandate to ensure the general health and welfare etc.. which is a moral rationale or impetus. The state has the power to tax therefore it may indeed take your money for pretty much whatever it wants so long as it isnt targetted to one individual. The state has the power to require certain things of its citizens in order to protect the common good.. particularly health. So the state can do things like declare quarantines, require child vaccination, govern drug sales etc. So the state can require every citizen take "reasonable action X" to protect the public health. As the state also takes on the responsibility of guaranteeing access to reasonable action it isnt an undue burden. Now if they mandate this and the insurance companies dont make access available without "undue burden" then of course someone could go to court to have any fine/case against them tossed.

            Hey.. i want this bill defeated, no annihilated if it doesnt have a Strong public option. But it wont be on constitutional grounds.

            •  no argument (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              cdreid

              ... except that it is a new thing to use the mandate not to require payment to the government but rather to a range of private service providers, which is Waldman's whole point.

              He's arguing that it's politically outrageous, I was asking whether it is legally permissible.  

              I agree that it probably is legally permissible, but it seems wrong still.

              •  I agree completely (0+ / 0-)

                we do it with auto insurance now rather than the much cheaper, saner method of no-fault. The only reason that probably hasnt become a complete ripoff yet is the relatively low amounts of money involved (joe millionaire can set up an auto liability insurance company out of pocket... but joe billionaire would be taxed starting a health insurance company).

                We're in the age of fascism. I expect if it keeps up and this depression continues we're going to have radical reaction to it amongst the working classes.

          •  Auto-Insurance? (0+ / 0-)

            Maybe that's not what you're thinking of, but in most states you have to have insurance to get a drivers' license, safety inspection, etc.

      •  They are already doing it with auto insurance (0+ / 0-)

        At the state level, you don't have insurance then you theoretically don't get a registration or plates for your vehicle.  That's the law...and of course it can be gamed (cancel insurance after you get plates, etc), but it appears it can be mandated.

      •  States require private auto insurance (0+ / 0-)

        Some states including California require you to buy private auto insurance. Businesses are required to provide certain things (bathrooms for employees or customers in some cases),

    •  From Obama supporter to Teabagger . . . (0+ / 0-)

      . . . you have GOT to trademark that phrase.

      Because it is going to be used a LOT, if there is no "public option", and a damn good one at that, in the final health care bill!

    •  Thank you, David, for making this point (0+ / 0-)

      so effectively.

    •  Like Dee Snider says... (0+ / 0-)

      We're not going to take it anymore!

      Live in Providence!!!!!!

      Medicare for All: the cleanest slogan and the best way forward.

      by furiouschads on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:55:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  With no PO and no anti-trust laws (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Chi, Geenius at Wrok

      mandating insurance is exactly what the insurance companies want - the government forcing you to give them money, and as much of it as they demand for your crappy healthcare policy that they will cancel at the drop of a hat.

      Seems like reform with no PO is not reform, its making the situation worse.

  •  A question: (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Bardy, Jagger, bmcphail

    Do you feel the same way about your automobile insurance?

      •  It depends on where you live. (9+ / 0-)

        No one is getting around in Kansas, Oklahoma or Nebraska on public transportation.  Giving up your car is really only an option in metropolitan areas, unless you want to become a hermit.

        Forcing people to move is not realistic.

        •  There are plenty of people (18+ / 0-)

          who live in rurual areas who don't own a vehicle.

          When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

          by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:08:42 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  But someone in tha family does, (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            cdreid, Jagger, ecj, vcthree

            or they bloody well wish they did.

            Not owning a vehicle in a rural area may be common enough, but it is a MAJOR hardship.

            "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

            by Unduna on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:11:38 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  It's not common for rural people to have no (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              cdreid, Chrisfs, Jagger

              transportation.

              •  Right. (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Alumbrados, Jagger, ShempLugosi

                And it sucks.

                "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

                by Unduna on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:16:57 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Yes it does (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  beltane, CMYK

                  but they find ways to deal with it. No one needs to own a car to survive.

                  When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                  by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:28:28 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Wow. (5+ / 0-)

                    I'm not going here, but suffice to say theres lots you don't get about just how rural rural can be.

                    And yes, it can be life threatening, especially if in addition to being without a car you are also without a phone. It can be very definitely life-threatening.

                    "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

                    by Unduna on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:37:55 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  I grew up in rural Oklahoma (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      sphealey

                      I know from direct experience people make it work. If you think it's impossible to survive in rural areas without owning a vehicle it is you who have no idea of what it's like in rural areas of the country.

                      When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                      by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:39:51 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  People make it work. (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        MRA NY

                        And it is a distinct hardship on them.

                        I live in the Tennessee mountains, now, today, next to the poorest county in the country.

                        I'm in the heart of rural. Don't preach to me about getting away from using cars or how easy it is to go without them. It ain't easy and it isn't just "ok".

                        "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

                        by Unduna on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:44:36 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  And how did people survive (0+ / 0-)

                          before Henry Ford invented the automobile?

                          Appalachia is full of people who don't own motor vehicles and they are able to survive just fine without them. It's more difficult yes, but not impossible.

                          When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                          by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:47:13 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Basically, at this point, I understand that you (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            cdreid, MRA NY

                            are blind, deaf and dumb to the realities of rural poverty, the life threatening realities, and I am done with you.

                            "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

                            by Unduna on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:49:56 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  That's funny (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Van Buren

                            I have direct experience with rural poverty. Many of them are too poor to own a car (many who do own a car don't have insurance because they can't afford it) yet they survive.

                            You've gone completely off topic. No one is required to own a vehicle. It's not even a right.

                            When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                            by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:53:49 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                  •  Please (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Unduna, MRA NY

                    you dont have a clue what you're talking about. Stop embarassing yourself.

                    •  Excuse me? (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      xysea

                      I have direct experience surviving without owning a car. It's a real pain in the ass sometimes but it's not impossible.

                      Owning a vehicle is a convenience and a privilege. It saves a lot of time and makes it possible to do a lot more things than we would be able to do without one. However it is not required for day to day survival.

                      When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                      by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:43:52 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

              •  I didn't say they didn't have transportation (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                sphealey, zett, CMYK

                I said they didn't own cars.

                The Amish manage to survive without cars. In fact sometimes I wonder if our automobile society has done more to hurt us than to help us, but that's a discussion for a different diary.

                When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:38:17 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  The Amish are a self-sustaining community. (0+ / 0-)

                  Shheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeesh.

                  "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

                  by Unduna on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:45:59 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Buggies and horses for them... (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Unduna, Cali Techie

                  And I'm pretty sure they have to be licensed and perhaps have to be insured if they travel at all on the public roads.

                  Insurance is a racket...organized, government sanctioned, crime.

                  by trinityfly on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:49:19 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Depends (0+ / 0-)

                    On a state by state basis. I've spent a great deal of time in rural Indiana where there are large numbers of Amish people. They have to put the orange triangles on their buggies, but no license plates and I'm pretty sure no insurance since the likelihood of them causing any real damage is pretty minimal. It's more likely they're going to be the ones who will get the worst of any accident.

                    When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                    by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:57:56 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Your overall stance is that of a purist (3+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Unduna, BR Janet, MRA NY

                      and you really are aware of the realities that rural people face, especially when there is a question of health and safety and how to get to it.  You're wishfully thinking outside of realities.

                      It would be wonderful if I, as a rural person, had access to a bus to get to town...but I don't have ANY bus service in this remote, rural area.  And better yet, we would love to have that bus schedule be such that the bus will be here the second someone has a heart attack or when the appointment is scheduled.

                      It would be wonderful if we could go back to the "good old days" before cars, when my relatives could not get to town whatever happened in good order...and they just died.

                      Better than this black/white stance you are defending with such vigor, you need to think outside your closely held belief box of how things really are and what rural really means.

                      Insurance is a racket...organized, government sanctioned, crime.

                      by trinityfly on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:06:26 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  ooops.."you really are UN-aware" (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Unduna

                        Insurance is a racket...organized, government sanctioned, crime.

                        by trinityfly on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:28:34 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  I am not a purist (0+ / 0-)

                          and I am far from unaware. I have direct experience living in a rural setting without access to personally owned mechanized transportation. I've done it and the fact I'm still here is proof it is possible. There are over 100,000 Amish people in this country, most of whom live in rural settings and very few of whom personally own mechanized transport. My grandmother survived just fine in a small rural Oklahoma town with no public transit and lived into her 90's, the last 30 years of her life without my grandfather and she never got a drivers license.

                          Owning mechanized transportation definitely makes it easier to live a longer and more productive life, however it is not a requirement for day to day survival.

                          The unaware are those who think it is impossible to live without owning a motor vehicle. I'm merely pointing out the fact it is not.

                          You're conflating ownership with access, a completely different topic. We've spread out more thanks to access to mechanized transport. If we still relied on walking and horses our cities would not be nearly as big and we'd actually have MORE rural farmland. Access to mechanized transportation has made it possible for us to build more cities as well as reduce the number of arable acres of land for our food. Access to mechanized transport makes it possible for us to centralize important services like hospitals. It is however not required for us to survive as a society.

                          Access to health care on the other hand is necessary for the survival of our society. Living unlike driving is a basic human right recognized around the world. We should not be forced to pay corporations for the right to access adequate health care and it is the role of the government as a part of providing for the general welfare of its citizens to make sure everyone has access to health care without forcing us to buy insurance that doesn't do anything to make sure we all have that right.

                          When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                          by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:33:59 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Your grandmother lived in a TOWN (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Unduna

                            a TOWN...that is not rural...

                            And horses...How do you plan to get the hay and feed for your horses to them.  Oh, that's right, you'll have hay fields and you will scythe the hay by hand and god knows you won't have a baler...and in the corn fields you have you will plant every seed by hand and pick each ear yourself.  And you will shovel each load of horse poo by hand...no tractors for you!!!

                            You appear to have a great number of romantic notions about what rural life used to be.  If my grandmother were here (who lived on a farm far from any town where your grandmother lived), she would inform you of reality.  

                            Look, I agree with you that our earth would be a better place had we not gone so totally toward a petroleum based economy.  Any place we can mitigate that is our duty.

                            How rural people do that is growing a lot of our own food, raising animals for meat, eggs, etc., sharing with and helping neighbors (which are often FAR apart) and DRIVING TO TOWN when we have to and combining trips and errands, where it would be IMPOSSIBLE to carry home all the things we need on a bike!!!

                            Insurance is a racket...organized, government sanctioned, crime.

                            by trinityfly on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 01:03:13 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Oh how did man ever survive (0+ / 0-)

                            before Henry Ford?

                            How does man survive in sub-saharan Africa?

                            I'm not against personally owned mechanized transport. I've owned many cars over the years and there's one sitting in my driveway right now. In fact I drive it probably more than I should considering it's a 2003 with over 170K miles on it. I certainly wouldn't have the lifestyle I have today if I didn't have my car.

                            However if I didn't have it, I'd still find ways to survive.

                            Yes my grandmother lived in a town. I however was without my own car and lived miles from the nearest town with no public transportation. I still somehow managed to get into town on a regular basis, bring home large items and even hold down a job. Yet I did not own a car or even a bicycle.

                            You're thinking only within your own realm of experience and you're not looking outside and the other possibilities.

                            At any rate this isn't a debate over car ownership (which again unlike gun ownership is not a right) it's a debate over mandated health insurance without a public option.

                            I'll use an analogy. It would be the same as requiring everyone who lived in the country who didn't own a car to come into town to go to the bathroom and not provide any means for them to do it. Sure most people would be able to find a way to make it happen and most of them probably wouldn't be happy about it. There will be some however who will be unable or unwilling to do it and will pee in their own back yards instead.

                            When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                            by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 01:14:47 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  And I would say back to you: (0+ / 0-)

                            You're thinking only within your own realm of experience and you're not looking outside and the other possibilities.

                            Which brings us to the stalemate that can only be resolved without consideration in both directions.

                            Interesting discussion...

                            Insurance is a racket...organized, government sanctioned, crime.

                            by trinityfly on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 01:18:24 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  It's only a stalemate (0+ / 0-)

                            because you won't step outside of your box and consider other possibilities because you refuse to admit you could be incorrect.

                            There are people surviving and even thriving in this country without owning their own personal motorized vehicle. Even out in rural and remote areas. Do you personally bring home every single item that is in your house? Do you never use a delivery service? You've never had furniture or appliances delivered?

                            Again ownership is not the same as access. You're only required to purchase automotive insurance if you own a motorized vehicle and it's possible to choose not to own a motorized vehicle. People do it all the time - willingly. It's not the same as mandating health care coverage because there is only one other alternative to living and that's not living. VERY different. People who make this comparison are comparing grapes to watermelons. Yes, they're both fruits, but with very different and important distinctions.

                            When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                            by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 01:26:19 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  More power to those people (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Unduna, Mortifyd

                            who can survive without a vehicle...and like most rural people, I am not one of them.

                            Your narrow view is romantic and naive at best.  You are surely working tirelessly toward this utopia that you see in your minds eye and I wish you the best in achieving it.

                            Insurance is a racket...organized, government sanctioned, crime.

                            by trinityfly on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 02:33:32 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Yes, more power to all people (0+ / 0-)

                            Just because you don't think you could survive without a personally owned motor vehicle doesn't mean you actually can't. You can.

                            No, you wouldn't have the lifestyle you have now and you might live in a different place than you do at the moment, and you'd probably have to rely on friends and family for the times when the inconvenience of not owning your own vehicle would preclude you from getting somewhere you needed to go, but you'd find a way to get there.

                            I'm neither romantic nor naive. I'm pointing out a simple fact. There are rural poor who do not own their own motorized transportation. They somehow manage to get everything they need to survive. No, they don't have fantastic lifestyles and routine tasks you and I who own our own vehicles take for granted are major events, but they still manage to obtain what they need in order to survive and keep their homes intact enough to repel the elements.

                            This started off as a comparison between mandated auto insurance and mandated health insurance. The two are not anything like each other for the simple fact you do not need to own a car in order to survive or even have a livable quality of life, where access to affordable health care is a necessity just like food and water. A few people tried to change the rules and tilt the argument in an attempt to strengthen their weak positions by focusing on people in rural areas and then refusing to acknowledge there are people in rural areas who choose not to own motorized vehicles or the rural elderly. I placed a rescue dog with an 86 year old woman who lived on a farm near Colusa, CA, a good 20 miles from town and she had no car and she had everything she needed and a pretty good lifestyle. They can't accept even with their changing the rules their arguments are weak so they result to accusations and name-calling, both signs the accusers and name-callers know their positions are weak.

                            When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                            by Cali Techie on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 10:09:13 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

            •  So car insurance is a tax on the rural dwellers? (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              beltane

              Is that what the gist of this is?  Or that you feel compelled to use a car?

              And let's define major hardship here. Okay?  

              I'm sick of GOP SOP!

              by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:14:43 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Are you serious? (8+ / 0-)

                You seriously can't imagine the incredible hardship of being poor and without transportation in a rural area?

                And what exactly could be the problem with that that is so unbelievable to you that you need to accuse me of something vague but distinctly ugly?

                Wow.

                "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

                by Unduna on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:19:12 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I didn't accuse anyone of anything. (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  tmo, sphealey

                  Let's ramp it down.

                  I live in a semi-rural area.  We still have a bus.  We can still carpool.  

                  I can completely envision it.  I've been without a car.

                  Why can't you accept that people can, and do, live without them in all kinds of areas and that because I say so doesn't make me some urban elitist?

                  I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                  by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:20:28 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  If you have a bus, (5+ / 0-)

                    it ain't that rural.

                    todo lo que tienes que hacer es seguir a los gusanos

                    by VictorLaszlo on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:30:45 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  I've lived in South Dakota, for example. (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      tmo, Unduna

                      I know Sioux Falls has busses. Rapid City - I'm not sure, but they probably have something.

                      The rest of the state has nothing for public transit. Literally nothing.

                      todo lo que tienes que hacer es seguir a los gusanos

                      by VictorLaszlo on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:34:32 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Funny. (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Cali Techie

                        I live in a mid size town in N Florida.  Where I live, near the edge of the city limits, there are no busses.

                        When my car broke down, I had to put my daughter on the bus each day, then bike the 7 miles to the nearest bus stop, take the bus 10 more miles to my job, then back to the bus stop at the end of the day and another 7 mile bike ride home.  

                        It wasn't convenient, but I didn't lose my job.  I didn't die without a car.

                        I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                        by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:38:44 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  -sigh- What part of "some places have NO busses" (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          Unduna

                          are you not getting?

                          todo lo que tienes que hacer es seguir a los gusanos

                          by VictorLaszlo on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:50:04 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Isn't is a CHOICE to live there? (0+ / 0-)

                            If I told you my housing cost was expensive and that the insurance to cover it was required, and really high, wouldn't you tell me it was my choice to live there?

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:14:53 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  your ridiculous commentary is not only (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Unduna, VictorLaszlo

                            ignorant, but totally absent of reality.

                            Are you saying that everyone should up and move to places that there is public transportation?  So, we should all sell our cheaper to begin with homes, for bottomed out prices, to move to expensive cities, and give up our jobs in the process?  Oh, yeah, you are dealing in reality.  

                            "Don't Bet Against Us" - President Barack Obama

                            by MRA NY on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:50:30 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  No, I never said that. (0+ / 0-)

                            Defending car as a necessity, such a food, water, oxygen, medical care or shelter is pretty hard to do considering its merely an inanimate object that moves you from place to place.

                            As for pushing off the cost onto someone else, how is giving a neighbor gas money any different than paying a bus fare?

                            There are people out there who cannot afford cars.  FACT.  There are people out there who cannot afford to insure cars.  FACT

                            What do they do to survive, I wonder?

                            Please answer that one question.  Thanks.

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:22:42 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  In rural areas, they barely do. (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Mortifyd

                            But that doesn't seem to have impressed you much, since everyone has been trying to explain this to you.

                            IN RURAL AREAS, PEOPLE WITHOUT CARS BARELY SURVIVE AND SOME ACTUALLY DIE. SOME FAST, SOME SLOW.

                            You have truly shown your "frugality" to be blind to some very, very, very vital realities.

                            All of your questions have been answered, and apparently little or none of your mind has accepted the facts presented to you.

                            This has been one of the most unfortunate encounters with blindness and stubborn ignorance that I have had on Dkos, and that is saying something.

                            "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

                            by Unduna on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 04:51:23 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  But they do survive. (0+ / 0-)

                            You admitted it.

                            And I think your blindness is appalling too.  Considering how little many people live with on this planet, your demand that a car is a necessity is more than a little spoiled and selfish.

                            But that seems to be the American way.  Spoiled, selfished, entitled and privileged.  Kudos to you for keeping up that tradition.

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 05:15:59 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Actually, I was raised in third world Asia, (0+ / 0-)

                            where no one except the extremely rich have cars.

                            Look at my user name. It's Filipino. I am not primarily an American. You are in no position to preach to me.

                            In rural America, if the poor don't have cars, they are left vulnerable to a deadly impoverishment.

                            Your attitude completely fails to acknowledge the incredibly dangerous and desperate poverty of too many of your fellow Americans, and that is unacceptable. THAT is the epitome of spoiled, selfish, entitled, and privileged.

                            In fact, it is ignorance, and by definition, you are ignorant.

                            Since you have NO excuse for it, your blindness to the very present and real facts of American poverty is not only insane, it is disgusting.

                            Your elitism and naivete are embarrassing to this party. You obviously don't have the sense to be ashamed, but I am deeply ashamed for you.

                            "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

                            by Unduna on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 05:43:02 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Excuse me? (0+ / 0-)

                            There is something deeply, deeply wrong with you.

                            If cars are so intrinsic to survival, why does the Federal government not issue them to poverty stricken areas and underwrite the insurance?   Please explain that to me.

                            Your ignorance is astounding as well.  It is because of people like you that oil policy in this country is a complete failure, costing the lives of thousands of service people.  Because YOU insist on living in a rural area and INSIST on driving many miles and INSIST on cheap fuel, these people have died.  That is the EPITOME of arrogance, and you have the NERVE to lecture me?  

                            You have NO excuse for your arrogance, your ignorance, nor your DEMAND that US Energy policy be dictated around YOUR desires for motorized transportation and cheap, subsidized gasoline.

                            As for the POOR?!! How the HELL are they supposed to PAY for said vehicle, insurance and fuel?  What in the HELL is wrong with you?  If you are truly that poor, you can't AFFORD a vehicle.  HELLO!  

                            I've lived in DIRE poverty, someone like you probably couldn't understand that because of your personal bias.  I HAD TO MAKE IT WITHOUT A CAR FOR MANY, MANY YEARS.  Are you blind to that fact, as well?  Yes, desperate poverty.  Living in places that were barely liveable, etc.  You have no blinking IDEA and what amazes me is your complete and utter ignorance.

                            YOU reject MY EXPERIENCE because its inconvenient to YOUR worldview?  Whatever.  My experience is still valid.

                            But at this point, any attempts to communicate with you are FUTILE.  After all, you know EVERYTHING about EVERYTHING and anyone's experience that flies in the face of that only proves THEY are INSANE!

                            (I'm sure this wins you many friends and arguments).

                            Namaste.

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 06:32:52 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You have long since lost this argument. (0+ / 0-)

                            You are ignorant to the poverty and realities of your fellow Americans.

                            It's vile.

                            "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

                            by Unduna on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 06:44:05 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Boo hoo. (0+ / 0-)

                            I haven't lost a thing.  You, on the other hand, have apparently lost your mind.

                            You didn't answer my question about why the Federal Government doesn't subsidize car ownership for the poor and underwrite the insurance.  Could it be because the Federal government believes that cars are not necessary for human survival?

                            Why, I think it might be that.  Yes.

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 06:46:16 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  The government subsidizes housing, (0+ / 0-)

                            food, shelter, even the water supply.  But not cars.

                            Hmm...

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 06:47:55 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  How can I be ignorant of it when (0+ / 0-)

                            I lived within it?  You make no sense and are so blinded by bias and emotion you are skipping over simple facts at this rate.

                            I feel sorry for you.

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 06:47:11 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Hey, I know - (0+ / 0-)

                            let's start a program to hand brand new cars to immigrants to this country.  Since they're such a necessity, and all...

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 06:49:43 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  PS I didn't realize the suggestion (0+ / 0-)

                            that living without a car is feasible in many situations was preaching.  lol

                            Please, go on consuming fossil fuels at whatever rate you choose, damn the consequences to the economy, the military and oh yeah, the environment.

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 06:43:05 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Maybe you (0+ / 0-)

                            should torch that 1995 Nissan of yours. Pronto.

                          •  Why should I do that? (0+ / 0-)

                            I paid for it.  I earned it.  I lived for many years without a car.

                            It's not a necessity.  It's a luxury.  One that makes my life better.

                            But at least I know the difference between luxury and necessity; apparently, you do not.

                            No wonder America's so broke and fucked up.

                            And our energy policy is in the toilet.

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 06:34:01 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  PS Burning it would be a waste of money. (0+ / 0-)

                            A better suggestion would have been to sell it.  :)

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 06:44:14 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You're sort of (0+ / 0-)

                            all over the place with the above comment. It would have been more effective to end with "[O]ne that makes my life better."
                            The rest of the comment includes unattractive self-aggrandizement,  pure assumption made necessary in order to insult and diminish, and sensationalist non sequitur.
                            From reading this thread I think the problem you are having is with your definitions of "luxury," and "necessity." It seems to me (and many others) that you are having to play semantical games in order to not appear a hypocrite. It's not working very well: Your audience is not convinced that your ability to drive to work is a luxury. This, I think, is the crux of the matter. People still think you are a hypocrite: Your ability to drive to work is not a luxury (the opposing viewpoint) and simply stating that it is while making self righteous egotistical pronouncements combined with the use of squidlike sensationalist non sequitur doesn't make it so.
                            You have not presented a coherent argument for the "driving to work as luxury" idea, let alone the rather glaring problem of why you would indulge in what, according to your own statements, is a luxury which causes terrible consequences.
                            Hypocrite squared. Not good.
                            My assumption is that you can do better than this.  

                          •  First off - (0+ / 0-)

                            why do you care?  No matter what I say you won't believe it anyway.

                            Yes, owning a car is a luxury.  Many people do not own cars and their lives continue on with little abatement, maybe some inconvenience.  Maybe they need to change their lifestyles a little.  But generally, they go on living.

                            There is no clearer argument than that.

                            As for my own personal life?  For many years, I could not afford a car.  I walked, biked, carpooled and took the bus to work.  My life wasn't easy, but it wasn't 'impossible' or 'impractical' either.  I even ran errands and got my kid to the doctor.  

                            Yes, without a car.  So a car is a luxury.  Like A/C.  Or cable.  Something that makes life better, but you can get by without one.  A/C makes life better, but you can get by without it.  (Cable, well I'm not sure it improves lives all that much lol).

                            One can get on without a vehicle if one must.  After all, what do you do when your car breaks down?  Does everything in your life come to a screaming halt? Or do you make do until it can be repaired again?

                            It's not quite like doing without food, water, shelter or medical care, is it?  Those, in case you didn't understand, are necessities for survival.  A vehicle makes survival more pleasant, more manageable and easy, but without a car you can still manage to live and survive.

                            However, you will believe what you wish to believe and nothing more.  Even evidence of many people living their lives WITHOUT vehicles isn't enough to sway you.

                            http://www.simpleliving.net/...

                            http://www.valuewit.com/...

                            http://today.msnbc.msn.com/...

                            According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics 2003 Consumer Expenditure Survey, the average American spends eighteen cents of every dollar earned on transportation. And 98 percent of that transportation spending is for "the purchase, operation, and maintenance of automobiles." That makes our cars the second largest expense behind housing. And by the way, that 18 percent figure may be low; it was calculated using the average price of gasoline in the year 2003, which was $1.55 per gallon.

                            Despite the fact that we live in a car-centered culture, not only can you live without a car, you can live well without a car. And if you follow the hundreds of tips and strategies in this book, living car-free can become downright easy. You’ll learn how to get to work, how to get your shopping and errands done, how to maintain a vibrant social life, and how to overcome car-free challenges with creativity. By following the step-by-step program in this book, you will soon be smiling on your way to the bank, instead of frowning on your way to the gas pump.

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 08:50:02 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Oh, and more - (0+ / 0-)

                            http://www.bikeroute.com/...

                            http://www.bikeroute.com/...

                            There are lots of reasons to switch out to alternate forms of transportation.

                            And no one is required to live in a rural area, that is a choice.  Furthermore, the fact that they do is leading to bad energy practices and policies in the US which are unsustainable in the long run.  Fossil fuels and combustion engines have a finite life.

                            http://en.wikipedia.org/...

                            http://www.city-data.com/...

                            The Census Bureau designates something like 70% of Americans as living in "urban" areas which I think refers to any settlement with 5000 people or more, or in a suburban county.

                            Are you really trying to tell me that transportation and energy policy should be dictated by the 30% of Americans who live in rural areas?  

                            Really? Why?

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 08:57:13 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  We are here (0+ / 0-)

                            caring. That is why we are here. I am listening to you. Still. If you have alot to say and you want people to listen to you, you should not begin with " why do you care?" It disrespects this caring community. We are here caring. That is what we are doing. That is assumed in our presence.
                            It is problamatic to expect your reader to continue reading after asking of the reader  " why do you care?" Can we agree on that? You are disrespecting your own discourse. And asking me to participate in this diminishment. And then a flood of black ink, squidish.
                            I cannot respond to anything after " why do you care?" It wouldn't be good for your development, imho. Set a bad example and all that. You do not begin honest discourse in this way and expect it to continue.
                            I am glad you are here honing your verbal skills in the caring crucible of our community.
                            Namaste.

                          •  You weren't exactly respectful of me. (0+ / 0-)

                            Good for my development?  You get respect by giving respect.  If you are disrespectful, how can you expect respect yourself?

                            It is not problematic.  It goes to the heart of your motive.  Your comments before didn't exactly seem encouraging.  Rather, they were condescending and critical.

                            And I suspect the reason you don't rebut is because you can't.

                            Thank you for looking out for my 'development'.  How condescending of you.  You don't contnue an honest discourse by being condescending.  

                            No, your presence does not mean you care.  It merely means you are here.

                            Namaste.

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 10:39:54 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  PS A lot of black ink... (0+ / 0-)

                            Backs up what I say.  Your attitude also backs up what I say.  You won't believe it, because you choose not to.

                            Still, I live in hope.  So, I tried.  Hence, the ink.

                            Oh well.  Global warming be damned, right?  

                            As long as you feel good about yourself by putting others down, that's all that matters.  

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 10:46:23 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                        •  The nearest public (3+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          Unduna, VictorLaszlo, MRA NY

                          transportation from me is 32 miles.  Makes for a hell of a bike ride.

                          No public option, no $$$ support. No kidding. (kerplunk) Political compass -7.88 -7.03.

                          by Heiuan on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:55:00 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  But owning a car (0+ / 0-)

                            makes it possible for you to live where you live. If you didn't own a car you'd probably choose to live a lot closer to town.

                            When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                            by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:58:52 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Actually, (3+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Unduna, VictorLaszlo, MRA NY

                            in my case it was the reverse.  The jobs that we could get dictated how much expense we could afford.  We moved where we could afford to live.  

                            No public option, no $$$ support. No kidding. (kerplunk) Political compass -7.88 -7.03.

                            by Heiuan on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:03:50 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  But owning a car makes it possible (0+ / 0-)

                            I'm assuming you own your home. I live in town and I rent because it's impossible to own a home worth owning for a reasonable amount of money (even in this down real estate market). I could easily buy a home I'd like to live in a bit farther out, but I choose not to.

                            If you couldn't afford to own a car you probably also couldn't afford to live where you live and you'd be living in town.

                            When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                            by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:12:07 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  When my car broke down and I couldn't drive (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Cali Techie

                            anymore do you know what someone (compassionately snark) told me?  Move to where there's public transport.  lol

                            A car ain't a necessity.

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:16:24 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  My grandmother (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            xysea

                            never drove a car. She never got a license. My grandfather was the one who drove everywhere. He passed away at a fairly young age (in his 60's) and my grandmother still managed to survive.

                            She lived in town, but there was no public transit. If she had to get somewhere she walked, called a cab, or had friends or family drive her where she needed to go. She would walk to the grocery store and when she was done shopping the "bag boy" would come back with her and help her get the groceries in the house.

                            It was a simpler time, but not really all that long ago. She survived and lived very nicely without ever owning a car.

                            People who think a car is an absolute necessity have no idea how people who don't own cars make their lives work.

                            When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                            by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:38:12 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                  •  Here: (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    MRA NY

                    Is that what the gist of this is?  Or that you feel compelled to use a car?

                    Making it personal when I'm trying to explain universal.

                    "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

                    by Unduna on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:41:25 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  It's not universal (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Van Buren, xysea

                      There are more people than you think who are surviving just fine without owning mechanized transportation. You're forgetting about entire communities of people who don't own motor vehicles and live in rural settings.

                      Now if everyone were required to own a motor vehicle you'd be a bit more on track, but as it stands now motor vehicles are a convenience and sometimes not having one makes life difficult, but not impossible.

                      When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                      by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:45:29 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Then your definition of "not impossible" (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        MRA NY

                        is so elitist I'm done talking to you.

                        "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

                        by Unduna on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:48:05 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  You keep saying (2+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          wsexson, xysea

                          you're done talking to me yet you keep responding.

                          There's nothing elitist about anything I've said. It is eminently possible for people to survive even in rural areas without owning a motor vehicle. People do it all the time.

                          When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                          by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:01:09 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  I live in a rural area. Your comments (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Unduna

                            ARE elitist, as are others' here.

                            No, THERE ARE VERY FEW PEOPLE IN THIS COUNTRY IN RURAL AREAS WHO DO NOT OWN A CAR - MINISCULE NUMBERS!  I do not know of ONE personally.

                            I too keep wishing to stop wasting my time responding to you and a couple others here, but your comments are too infuriating to do that.

                            "Don't Bet Against Us" - President Barack Obama

                            by MRA NY on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:54:47 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You are extrapolating (0+ / 0-)

                            your own experience to a global group and inferring everywhere is just like where you live.

                            You may not personally know anyone who lives in a rural area and who doesn't own a car, but I do. I've been someone who lived in a rural area and didn't own a car, therefore I have direct experience. The fact I'm still here shows that owning a car in rural areas is NOT needed for survival. It makes things a lot more convenient and saves a lot of time, but you can and people do live in rural areas without motorized transportation.

                            This is waaaaaaaaaayyyyyy off topic for the diary anyway.

                            When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                            by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:24:06 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                    •  You was the -collective- you (0+ / 0-)

                      not you personally.  I think you misinterpreted. 'You' meaning the group who defends the use of motorized vehicles as a necessity.

                      I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                      by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:47:11 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

            •  Often yes (16+ / 0-)

              They usually rely on family or friends. However that's not the point. Driving a car is not a right, it's a privilege and it is possible to survive without owning a car. It's also liability insurance to protect others from your possible misuse (intentional or otherwise) of the vehicle. It is also possible to never ever have a claim on your auto insurance.

              Mandating health insurance coverage is a different beast. There's no way to get around it and thus it's basically nothing more than a regressive tax on people just because they're breathing (effectively a way to tax air). Without a public option or  regulation that says they must cover absolutely everything and never push back on a claim, mandates are nothing more than siphoning money from the middle class and poor into the pockets of the wealthy.

              When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

              by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:27:43 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  But is it AS major a hardship... (5+ / 0-)

              ...as having cancer and no way to pay for treatment?

              "This kind of mania can't be co-opted: it can only be overruled." - Johann Hari

              by nehark on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:32:09 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  If you don't have a car in rural area, (0+ / 0-)

                you are so poor that if you got cancer, that would be your next reality.  

                "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

                by Unduna on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:53:07 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Nope (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  xysea

                  There are programs for people that poor. It's called Medicaid.

                  When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

                  by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:02:47 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Yes and they even provide (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Cali Techie, Pebbles

                    transport to clinics and chemo treatments, and then they drive you home.  They also provide you with an in home nurse if you need one.

                    No car required for you.

                    I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                    by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:21:34 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  You don't know what the hell you are talking (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Unduna

                      about.  Yeah, Medicaid may ALLOW for such care, but try finding it in a rural area.

                      It took months to find a nurse to come to our home to do PT, and then we could only get a couple times a week.  We went through every avenue - county, private, finally found someone at the local hospital.

                      Stop talking about things you apparently know nothing about.

                      "Don't Bet Against Us" - President Barack Obama

                      by MRA NY on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:57:24 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  I did find it in a rural area. (0+ / 0-)

                        When I lived out in the boonies, in a trailer and my neighbor's homebound, bed ridden mother was dying of emphysema.  Her car broke down, and she was worried about getting to work and her mother to the doctor.

                        She got her brother to come get her for work, and Medicaid provided someone to come out pick up her mother and transport her for treatment, then home again.

                        Why can't you accept the experiences of others as valid?

                        I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                        by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:24:55 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

          •  How 'bout a horse? (5+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            DawnG, Chaoslillith, Unduna, Cali Techie, xysea

            I personally know one cowboy Okie who only owns horses and helicopters.

            Send your old shoes to the new George W. Bush library.

            by maxschell on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:12:31 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Yah. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            xysea

            That's what horses are for.  Duh.

            Speaking of which, do you need "horse" insurance if you ride your horse on public roads?

            I never thought about it before now.

            You are entitled to express your opinion. But you are NOT entitled to agreement.

            by DawnG on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:32:45 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  You will need health insurance (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              DawnG, xysea

              Cuz there is in increased chance that your horse, no matter how 'bomb proof' may spook at an unexpected noise, horn, and all of a sudden you will find yourself dumped on hard pavement in front of oncoming traffic.

              I speak as someone who once had to cross a state highway all the time to take my horse on a trail ride, and it was damn dangerous at times.

              •  another curious question (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                xysea

                Can the cops pull you over for riding your horse drunk?  I mean technically the horse isn't drunk (hopefully) and it's not a machine that has no mind of its own.

                You are entitled to express your opinion. But you are NOT entitled to agreement.

                by DawnG on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:14:15 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  This thread could not get more off topic, but--:) (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  DawnG

                  Most localities have statutes prohibiting public drunkenness, so while "operating a horse under the influence" probably can't get you thrown into the pokey, they'd get you on another charge.

                  Turns out that talking about abstinence is a lot easier than practicing it.

                  by kayebee on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:44:04 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

              •  No. (0+ / 0-)

                You will need health CARE. Nobody needs health insurance, we need health CARE.

                All the real Christians have already been raptured.

                by Audri on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:05:17 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

          •  Even so, driving is a privilege. (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Prognosticator, Audri, xysea

            Breathing is not.

        •  You can walk. Ride a bike. (4+ / 0-)

          Hitch with a friend.  Carpool.  Take a taxi.  Or get a job near your house.  Loads of options.  Most of them...uh....'public'.

          I'm sick of GOP SOP!

          by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:09:56 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Where do you live? (9+ / 0-)

            I used to live in a small town in Kansas.  I now live in Chicago.  In Chicago I don't have to drive.

            In Kansas, the grocery store was 5 miles away, and the school I went to was almost 10.  That's a hell of a lot of bike riding, or titanic bills for taxis that you have to call and then wait a half an hour or more for.

            Switching jobs is an unrealistic option - it's just a dodge.  Especially in this economy.

            •  I live in N Florida. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Neon Mama

              And if I had to, I could get to work.  People do what they have to do.  In my old neighborhood (ghetto) most people didn't have cars.

              They used the bus system, walked or got a ride.

              I'm sick of GOP SOP!

              by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:13:52 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  The part where you said (10+ / 0-)

                to take the bus system is where you lost me.  There are huge sections of the country with no regular public transit option.  Cabs are incredibly expensive where I grew up, so much so that I had never been in one until I moved.  Dirt highways are not particularly bike friendly.

                Cars are a necessity for many Americans, like it or not.

                •  Necessity? (0+ / 0-)

                  I'd argue that cars make their lives easier, but they wouldn't die without them.

                  I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                  by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:21:06 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Bike riders (5+ / 0-)

                  Dirt highways are not particularly bike friendly.

                  Narrow, rural two lane highways are downright deadly dangerous for bike riders.

                  •  And factor in several inches of snow (4+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Jagger, trinityfly, Unduna, MRA NY

                    and a bike is just not going to be a rational choice. Even the Swedish ones with a ski instead of one of the wheels.

                    ATF Alcohol, Tobacco. Firearms. Add Burgers and Potato Salad and its a Southern Picnic.

                    by OHdog on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:38:20 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  95 degree temperature and high humidity (3+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      trinityfly, Unduna, MRA NY

                      a bike is just not going to be a rational choice.

                      Or throw in 95 degree temperature and high humidity.

                      Can't you see all the "over 40" set or those with handicaps biking 14 miles a day in rain, snow or broiling heat to get groceries???  Of course you can't carry a lot of groceries on a bike so you would make lots of these little 14 mile trips.

                      But some people just don't have the imagination to understand why a car can be an absolute necessity in many parts of the country.

                      •  Preferrable? Yes. (0+ / 0-)

                        Necessity?  No.

                        No imagination required.  People live without cars.  All the time.  Either they can't afford them, or the insurance.

                        Then, they move somewhere where there is public transport or they get rides from friends.  

                        I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                        by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:23:04 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Raving insanity n/m (5+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          trinityfly, Unduna, OHdog, MRA NY, Mortifyd
                          •  Yes, to think you need a car when most of the (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            wsexson

                            world doesn't have one.  Yes, it is. nt

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:44:02 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Everyone reading this thread except you (5+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Jagger, trinityfly, Unduna, OHdog, Mortifyd

                            realizes that the raving insanity refers to your comments, nothing else.

                            And, though you pretended not to get that, I will make it perfectly clear here:

                            your statements are without reason, they are illogical, they are unsupported, they have no relationship with reality - i.e. they are insane

                            "Don't Bet Against Us" - President Barack Obama

                            by MRA NY on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:01:34 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  No, they are not. (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Pebbles

                            Obviously you didn't read Meteor Blades' diary about personal attacks and name calling?

                            My statements have reason.  You just prefer your lifestyle.  That doesn't mean what I say is wrong, illogical or crazy.  It just means you prefer to live your life the way you live it and you don't like being challenged on your assumptions.

                            I lived for a long time in a semi rural area without a car.  I know it can be done because I have actually lived that way.  So, I know its not illogical, impossible or any of that.  

                            My experience is different than yours.  Live with it.

                            And since you have taken an increasingly nasty tone, I am content to let you continue to believe you need a vehicle to survive, like you need oxygen, food, water and shelter.  It's a necessity, after all.  

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:10:26 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I guess using public transport is just (0+ / 0-)

                            pushing the cost off onto others as well!!!  Damned public transport should be outlawed and the government should issue cars and pay for insurance since they are required to live!!!!!

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:15:58 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Don't you pay for public transportation? If you (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Jagger, Unduna

                            don't, must be some great place you live.

                            If you do, your disconnect from reality is showing again.

                            Yes, it might be subsidized by taxes, and yes, that means we all are paying for it.  One of those greater goods things.

                            Using your neighbors car means they are solely subsidizing you as opposed to spreading that cost around as with public transportation, for which YOU need to pay a fee on top of your taxes to keep others from having to totally pay for your ride.

                            "Don't Bet Against Us" - President Barack Obama

                            by MRA NY on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:25:32 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Yes and the lady that drove us to the doctor (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Pebbles

                            got gas money.  How is that any different?

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:49:09 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  1. I have called you no names , only your (4+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Jagger, Unduna, OHdog, Mortifyd

                            comments

                            1.  your statements have no reasoning.  you have taken your personal experience and juxtaposed it on every person in every situation as being comparably able to survive without a vehicle
                            1.  semi- rural don't cut it - as you have said, you had access to buses, and I am sure a greater population/pool of people to get rides from
                            1.  using someone else's car = needing a car, just not paying for your own
                            1.  you don't say how long you went without in that 'semi-rural' area nor why you found in NECESSARY to get a vehicle (and I would presume you are not just throwing money away on some unnecessary car purchase)
                            1.  Again, in your particular circumstance in your particular locale it was not illogical and impossible - but trying to say that it is not illogical or impossible for others is where the disconnection from reality comes in
                            1.  your tone throughout has been ridiculously insulting - and I am clearly not the only one that has felt that way,
                            1.  yes, I do need a vehicle to survive - since without working I would have no food or shelter, and without being able to get somewhere to buy food and other necessities, I would starve, and so on

                            I do not call people names, I actually often can be found trying to calm things down.  You are so out of line with your righteousness however that I cannot help but call you out on it.

                            "Don't Bet Against Us" - President Barack Obama

                            by MRA NY on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:21:16 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Righteousness? (0+ / 0-)

                            Living without a car is righteousness, now?

                            Semi-rural as in not within the city limits, more than 20miles to a town.  Really rural is even more than that.  

                            You said my comments were raving insanity.  Sounds like a bit of name calling going on there.

                            Do you consider giving someone gas money to take you into town any different than a bus fare?

                            I'm not into bandwagonesque arguments.  Or dogpiles. Either your argument stands up with just you making it or it does not.  I don't get intimidated because 'more than one' person doesn't like what I say.  More than one person disagrees with you but I felt no need to bring them into this.

                            I never said it was required for everyone, or that I was better than anyone.  That's your insecurity talking.  I just said it is possible.  I've lived it, so I know its possible.

                            If you feel differently fine. But the fact is, millions of people every day get up without owning a motorized vehicle of any kind, some even in rural areas, and they manage to conduct their lives.

                            Owning a car makes that easier.  But if you didn't own one, you'd find a way to survive.  Humans are funny that way; they'll adapt.

                            Go on owning your car; no one's stopping you.  But it is merely self-deluding to think that you can't get on without one.  

                            You do every time your car breaks down, don't you?  

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:30:36 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  So... (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Unduna

                            do you just enjoy completely missing other people's points - or just like to see your name come up?

                            Intimidation is not dialogue.

                            by Mortifyd on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 03:43:59 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  So, do you just like butting into (0+ / 0-)

                            convos that don't involve you, or do you just like to see your name come up?

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 05:14:14 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  well... (0+ / 0-)

                            Let me see.  public forum - check.  Registered member - check.  So it's not like you were having a private conversation and I most certainly can point out you're an idiot.

                            Intimidation is not dialogue.

                            by Mortifyd on Tue Sep 01, 2009 at 12:57:33 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                  •  I live on a dirt road (3+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Jagger, Unduna, MRA NY

                    which connects to a narrow two lane state highway which connects me with town 8 miles away.  In the winter we can have up to 5 feet of snow on the ground for weeks.

                    Not only is my four wheel drive car a necessity for health and safety, sometimes it is even difficult for a D9 tractor to get up into some of the homes in this area.

                    This is an argument that has no black or white answer to it...no absolutes.

                    Perhaps Americans should never live rurally so that the we must all have public transportation available to us in urban areas???

                    Perhaps we should all be prepared to walk if cars are verboten???

                    Thank you all very much for taking the intent of the diary wayyy off track into silly territory.

                    I'll spend my money however I damn well please...even for a car if I need it to insure that my family is safe and can get to medical care if necessary.  You cannot make me move...I like my trees, land and animals more than I like most of you :-)

                    Insurance is a racket...organized, government sanctioned, crime.

                    by trinityfly on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:10:59 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                •  If I took a bus to work (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Unduna, MRA NY

                  it would require two transfers and take nearly three hours.  To drive (in a car) takes 15 minutes.  My employer will provide me with a free bus pass, which I would gladly use if I didn't have to leave my house at 6:00 am and arrive home at 8:00 pm.  And I live in a state capital!

                  "We *can* go back to the Dark Ages! The crust of learning and good manners and tolerance is so thin!" -- Sinclair Lewis

                  by Nespolo on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:48:20 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  // 5 miles is NOT far on a bike (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              wsexson

              "I think a basic principle of our Constitution is nobody above the law" -Obama

              by heart of a quince on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:32:01 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Be fun taking my dog to the vet on that bike. (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Unduna, Focusmarker

                Or hauling home the groceries (especially on the uphill return 7 miles).

                And in the rain? Snow?  Oh, I know, just get my snowshoes out, right?

                And when my daughter is in her wheelchair or casts?

                Hell, even when she is not, she cannot be riding a bike.

                I could go on for pages and pages as to why it is ridiculous to think that people in rural areas can get by without a vehicle, but certainly will not waste my time.  But I must throw out there that it would sure be fun to see all my elderly neighbors pedaling their way to the doctor.  

                THIS NOTION OF RURAL RESIDENTS NOT NEEDING CARS IS JUST TOO RIDICULOUS.

                And, even in suburban areas, it is pretty far fetched - moms with young children, the elderly, the infirm of any age, anyone purchasing any appliances, tools, etc. - hell, anything more than a couple small grocery bags!  Another great sight - seeing Mom, with the kids in tow, balancing that birthday cake on her head (in the rain, of course)  JUST GIVE ME A BREAK, PLEASE!

                BTW, if your health goes, it is only you that suffers directly, if you cause an accident, others and their property suffer directly.  Not to mention that it is required to cover the interests of those providing loans.  Auto insurance and health insurance have VERY little in common.

                "Don't Bet Against Us" - President Barack Obama

                by MRA NY on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:46:03 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I have a tote thing on the back of my (0+ / 0-)

                  bike.

                  If I get groceries, or what have you, I put them in there.  It was a good investment.

                  A car is preferrable to you, but it is not a necessity like food or water or even shelter.  You will not die without a car.  You will just be very inconvenienced.

                  I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                  by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:24:06 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Basically you attacked about 12 statements (0+ / 0-)

                  that I didn't make.

                  "I think a basic principle of our Constitution is nobody above the law" -Obama

                  by heart of a quince on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:27:54 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  I live in northeastern Vermont (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Van Buren

              which is one of the most rural areas of the country. Lots of people don't have cars or can't drive for any number of reasons. It sucks, but they get by. When I lived in the city and in suburbia, I did not drive a car, and was happy to be free from the burden of car ownership.

              Will we have "freedom zones" in the USA where the insurance industry does not have the right to the contents of our bank accounts?

              The weak in courage is strong in cunning-William Blake

              by beltane on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:44:31 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  LARGE PARTS OF AMERICA ARE RURAL. (10+ / 0-)

            We seem to forget that with incredible speed and ease on this site.

            Sorry to holler, but this one-size-fits-all urbanism gets exhausting sometimes, with everything from bicycles to health care delivery and lots in between.

            Anyway, back to regularly scheduled programming...

            "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

            by Unduna on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:16:07 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I'm NOT IN AN URBAN AREA (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              beltane

              I'm in a suburban area.   On the edge of a rural area.  And my car has broken down before.  Many times.  And I had to get work work anyway.  Loads of times.

              I've used all the methods listed above.  

              I'm sick of GOP SOP!

              by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:18:32 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  If you don't know the difference between (6+ / 0-)

                a suburb in northern Florida and real rural America, then there's no hope for you. I've lived in places where the nearest town (i.e., place with a grocery store) is more than 40 minutes by car. Without traffic. Going more than 60 mph.

                Try biking that, walking it, or convincing anyone to setup a bus route.

                Now, is it requiring car insurance the same as requiring health insurance? No. The former is still a tax on rural Americans, though.

                •  I have lived in more rural places. (0+ / 0-)

                  You don't really know anything about me, do you?

                  I commute quite a bit, over 30 miles a day.  I do have a car and pay insurance.  The car is paid for and the insurance isn't so expensive.  And if I couldn't pay the insurance on the car, I wouldn't die as a result.

                  I think you guys need a better analogy.

                  I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                  by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:29:53 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  But you keep talking about busses as an option (4+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Unduna, Nespolo, MRA NY, Mortifyd

                    For many Americans, the nearest bus stop is 200 miles away.

                    todo lo que tienes que hacer es seguir a los gusanos

                    by VictorLaszlo on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:39:08 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  For me (4+ / 0-)

                      there's a bus stop right down the street from my house.

                      If I want to get to the mall? Great. If I want to get to the train station that goes into Boston? Great.

                      If I want to get anywhere near either my work or my school? Not so great.

                      DKos: The left's home for sanctimonious defeatism since 2008.
                      "The last time we broke a president, we got Reagan"--Bush Bites

                      by ChurchofBruce on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:40:43 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  How many Americans I wonder. (0+ / 0-)

                      Since most of us are centered in the NE and all the coasts.

                      I think you're trying to justify owning a vehicle ad as requirement and you're welcome to try, but people did live before the advent of cars.  They managed.  It took planning and they didn't travel as much or often, but they did manage to survive.

                      I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                      by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:43:46 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  When no one had cars, no one assumed that (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Unduna

                        you had a car. And cities and suburbs and towns weren't built for cars.

                        Since most of us are centered in the NE and all the coasts.

                        'Most of us,' sure. Does that mean the others don't exist?

                        It sounds to me like you've never been to a rural area.

                        todo lo que tienes que hacer es seguir a los gusanos

                        by VictorLaszlo on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:48:07 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Sounds to me like (0+ / 0-)

                          you'll do anything to defend having a car.

                          There are rural areas all around me.  What are you talking about?  You're making no sense.

                          I live in a small to mid size town in N Florida, where there are plenty of rural areas around me.  

                          I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                          by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:11:02 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                  •  Then you should know (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Unduna, MRA NY

                    there are only two options: a car with liability insurance and one without.

                    Excepting tractors, horses, helicopters, private airplanes, gliders, giant robots, and faeries.

                    Now, if you were suggesting that rural Americans use a public faerie transportation system you would have a much more substantive argument.

                    •  That's funny. (0+ / 0-)

                      A friend of mine commutes by bike.  Another car pools with someone else because she can't afford the insurance.  

                      The one who carpools, incidentally, is dropped off at a bus stop in town, where she takes public transport the rest of the way.

                      I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                      by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:44:57 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Yeah, and I would guess they don't have kids, esp (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        trinityfly, Unduna

                        young kids.  And pets. and elderly parents.  What do you suggest when these kids/pets/parents need to get to a doctor?

                        where does mom place the two or three kids on a bike?

                        And grandma in a sidecar?

                        And what happens in the rain (and up north here, in the snow?)

                        And when you do your grocery shopping? Other purchases?

                        Apparently, in your 'everyone on bikes' fairlyand, every single individual is fit to do 15 to 20 mile round trips on a regular basis with kids, groceries, all other purchases, pets balanced on their heads in rain, sleet or snow.

                        What are you smoking?

                        "Don't Bet Against Us" - President Barack Obama

                        by MRA NY on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:52:56 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Wrong. (0+ / 0-)

                          People live without cars.  Successfully.  

                          They shop on weekends, with friends.  Their kids take the bus to school and home again.

                          It is possible, just not preferrable.  That is the difference.

                          I don't smoke anything.  Gave up cigarettes five years ago, never was into the other.

                          I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                          by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:09:19 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

              •  "Rural" means (10+ / 0-)

                No buses.

                Dial-up internet, if there is internet at all.

                Likely no neighbors to just pop over and beg a lift from.

                Bumpy, ditchy and pot-holed (or just plain gravel, or dirt) roads without streetlights or right-of-ways that are traveled by large trucks going fast without lines of vision. On rural roads, bicyclists are treated like idiots who crave bloody death.

                That your "local" health clinic, school, social security office, welfare office, unemployment office, post office and hospital and emergency room are any where from 10 to 100 miles away.

                That emergency response, like firemen, police, ambulances, can be anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes away.

                RURAL. A LOT of us live here.

                "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

                by Unduna on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:34:54 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I understand what you're saying. (0+ / 0-)

                  What did people do before cars?

                  I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                  by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:41:12 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  geezus (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  wsexson, xysea

                  for all of you rural dwellers, isolated 20, 30, 60 miles from other humans with nothing better than mid-20th century technology(but at least able to post continuously  here)--and really, how can there be a LOT of you if you all claim to be in the middle of nowhere with nothing but dirt roads if anything surrounding you?--can you please get it through your heads that you're paying auto insurance for liability?  That is, you don't get the privilege of driving if you can't insure against possible damage or injury that you might cause to others?  
                  And if you can't pay for that type of insurance, then I don't care where you live, you shouldn't be driving.  
                  It's a "tax" on everyone, living anywhere, who needs their own automobile for whatever reasons.  
                  Now continue to complain about us ignorant elitists who don't know what it's like to live on a snow covered mountain with nothing but a ham radio for communication. What do I know?  I've only lived in Lancaster County, Pa. for most of my life, with horse and buggies all over the place(yeah, for real).
                  And I want to know, if you're not a farmer(and I don't even know any who are as isolated as some here claim to be), why the hell are you living so far from civilization in the first place?  Never mind, it's your business, just don't bitch about how you're being unfairly "taxed" because you have to cover your own liability.  

        •  Driving is a privilege, not a right (11+ / 0-)

          That's why you have to take a test to get a drivers license.

        •  Car insurance doesn't (20+ / 0-)

          cost half of your livelihood.  My monthly insurance would exceed my house payment.

          And now that you brought it up, it might be time to revisit that issue, too.

          The banks have a stranglehold on the political process. Mike Whitney

          by dfarrah on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:19:37 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Required auto insurance is Liability (22+ / 0-)

          State laws ONLY require liability auto insurance.   No state requires anybody to carry insurance to protect their own car.

          Thats a big difference.

          Religion gives men the strength to do what should not be done.

          by bobtmn on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:23:44 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  And even in metro areas, good public transpo (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Brooke In Seattle, Unduna, Nespolo

          isn't a given.  I'm in Dallas and we have a transit agency with buses and now a few trains.  Almost every bus and train is routed to come downtown and back out to the various stops or park 'n ride lots.  There are a few crosstown buses but not many.

          The Dallas area vet llbear is organizing Kos community assistance for lives in an immediate suburb west of downtown and goes to school in an immediate suburb just north of Dallas proper.  His roundtrip public transportation commute is approximately 45 miles roundtrip and over 6 hours total time.

          Don't be a dick; be a Weiner! Stand up for health insurance reform.

          by scarlet slipper on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:39:17 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  no choice about having a car. (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Chrisfs, Unduna, burlydee, MRA NY

        he can just choose not to drive a car,

        If I didn't have a car, I would have to walk seven miles to the nearest grocery store.  Nope, no choice about having a car.

        •  Would you die without a car? (3+ / 0-)

          You might really die without health insurance.

          I'm sick of GOP SOP!

          by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:30:28 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Walk seven miles (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            burlydee, MRA NY

            Would you die without a car?

            You walk seven miles to the grocery store and seven miles back and then tell me you don't need a car.  

            Ummm....nevermind...

            •  I'll tell you what. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              tmo

              When my car broke down I had to bike 7 miles to the nearest bus stop, catch the bus and go another 10 miles on that.  Then back again at the end of the day.  Sometimes I had to get off at an earlier stop, bike to the nearest grocery then get back on and go home.

              Sometimes I had to shop on the weekends.  

              Life wasn't easy but I didn't die.  I just had to plan accordingly.

              I'm sick of GOP SOP!

              by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:40:15 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  No snark meant but... (0+ / 0-)

          have you considered a garden?

          When I've lived way out there (in the innermost regions of Maui), I gardened extensively. Also, chickens. Very easy to raise and a lot of pleasure.

          ...on a good day I bowl a 19

          by mahakali overdrive on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:33:28 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  or.. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          xysea, Pebbles

          ...you could ride a bike.  They make them with those baskets or you can haul a tagalong behind it.

          just saying.  

          There are always options.  Just because you don't consider an option "acceptable" does not negate the fact that it is an option.

          You are entitled to express your opinion. But you are NOT entitled to agreement.

          by DawnG on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:36:08 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  'acceptable' how about 'feasible' or better (4+ / 0-)

            'REALISTIC' -  

            all those saying that a car is an 'option' for so many are either just having fun playing devil's advocate or have been reading and watching too many republicans explain their 'logic'

            "Don't Bet Against Us" - President Barack Obama

            by MRA NY on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:57:15 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  A car just makes life really convenient for you. (0+ / 0-)

              So convenient you can't imagine a world where having a car isn't a necessity.

              That's all.

              But there are many places, many countries in the world, where people live in rural areas, do not have cars and walk or bike or whatever to work.

              You've chosen not to.  But that's a choice.

              There are people for whom owning a car and paying insurance is too expensive.  Either they get along without one or they move.

              I'm sick of GOP SOP!

              by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:27:33 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  You are living in a fantasy world you have (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Jagger, Unduna, Mortifyd

                constructed.  What are you referring to - third world countries? yeah, that's how I want to live - shame on me for not making that choice.

                Answer me this: how do you propose I would get myself or my daughter to a doctor in the middle of winter?

                Better yet, tell me how I do it on a clear day in summer?  Only about 10 miles to the local hospital here, about 40 to the one we usually go to for specialists, 200 to where her vascular surgeon resides.

                Tell me how I do food shopping (7 miles away) and get back uphill 7 miles with those groceries - in all seasons?

                Tell me how I get my 5 gallon jug of chlorine home from 8 miles away?

                Oh, I have one farmer neighbor a couple thousand feet away - next neighbor is a 1/2 mile up the road.  They have 1/2 dozen young kids - don't think they are readily available in emergencies.

                I could list HUNDREDS of instances that I am sure you can not give me one feasible answer to, so knock off your childish comments, grow up and see reality.

                "Don't Bet Against Us" - President Barack Obama

                by MRA NY on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:44:19 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  How do people do it who can't afford cars (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Pebbles

                  or car insurance?  Surely they are out there.

                  I have a daughter.  For a long time, we didn't have a car.  When she got sick, my neighbor took us to the doctor, then to the pharmacy, then home.  She understood and was happy to help us.

                  It can be done.  You just prefer to have one.  There's no shame in that, but it does not make having one a necessity.

                  I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                  by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:50:43 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  So, a car WAS necessary - just you didn't want (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Jagger, Unduna

                    the expense of one, so you use your neighbors when you need to.  Bottom line is, the CAR WAS NECESSARY - and for those who can rely on neighbors on a regular basis for shopping, doctors, other needs - good on ya.

                    Fact is, you are not doing anything but avoiding the personal expense at the expense of others.  So stop trying to say cars aren't necessary - they are, and you have just admitted the same.

                    "Don't Bet Against Us" - President Barack Obama

                    by MRA NY on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:08:34 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Oh, I see now. (0+ / 0-)

                      You would die without a car, much like you would die without food, shelter, water, medical care and oxygen.

                      Got it!  Thanks for setting me straight!

                      I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                      by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:12:39 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  I wonder how all those people without cars (0+ / 0-)

                        are living right now.  Are they living?  Maybe they're all dead and they don't even know it!!!  Yikes!!!!  Maybe they're zombies.  

                        I had no idea a car was required to live!  All these years I just thought it was an inanimate object that moved you from place to place!

                        It all makes sense to me now!!!!!

                        I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                        by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:14:38 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Okay, your childish statements (yes, they sound (3+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          Jagger, Unduna, Mortifyd

                          like what I would hear from a 10 year old) have gotten out of hand.

                          Done now - go have your cookies and milk.

                          "Don't Bet Against Us" - President Barack Obama

                          by MRA NY on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:27:36 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Again with the insults. (0+ / 0-)

                            You must be a pleasant person to live with.  Or have you intimidated everyone around you against holding a different opinion than yours?

                            lol

                            I am allergic to milk and I don't eat cookies, but have a nice day, y'hear?  Don't let the door hit ya where the Good Lord split ya!

                            I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                            by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:50:36 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                •  My comments are not childish (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Pebbles

                  just because they differ from yours.  My experience is different.  I've lived life without a car in a semi-rural place.  I biked. I put groceries in the basket.  I did a lot of things.

                  What's childish is assuming your point of view is the only one that's legit, when provided with a perfectly sound option.

                  I'm not the one who needs to grow up. I didn't tell you you couldn't do it, I said it wasn't a necessity.  Big difference.

                  I'm sick of GOP SOP!

                  by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:52:37 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

          •  tell me my car is optional (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            jabney, Unduna, burlydee, MRA NY

            you don't consider an option "acceptable"

            You come out here for a year and try living without a car.  You can even have a bike if you want.  You may be younger than me and have better health but I still doubt you will consider a car "optional" after a year.

            But after a year, you can tell me my car is optional and I will listen.  Otherwise, I don't need someone telling me what is optional or not.

            •  I'm not saying it would be easy. (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Van Buren, xysea, Pebbles

              And I'm not even saying you SHOULD go without a car in your circumstance.

              I'm just saying there are ways around not having a car.  Just because you've ruled them out, doesn't mean they don't exist.

              The same cannot be said about healthcare.  If you contract an aggressive cancer or heart disease or diabetes, there is no going around it. You get treatment or you will die.

              People are being left to suffer and die for want of health coverage.  The same cannot be said for want of car coverage.  That is why the two are incomparable.

              You are entitled to express your opinion. But you are NOT entitled to agreement.

              by DawnG on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:12:12 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  lot of nerve (4+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Unduna, burlydee, MRA NY, Mortifyd

                You have a lot of nerve, judging people and telling them how they can live when you know jack shit what you are talking about.

                •  Please don't presume to talk for me. (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Pebbles

                  The whole point of my comment was to say that I am not judging YOU or telling YOU how to live.  You are getting all pissed off over something I never said.

                  The entire point of my comment was to point out that there is no comparison between health insurance and car insurance.

                  THAT IS IT!

                  Jesus Christ.  I have no problem taking flack for something I said, but I will sit here and not take flack for what you THINK I said, but didn't.

                  You are entitled to express your opinion. But you are NOT entitled to agreement.

                  by DawnG on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:45:40 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

              •  Furthermore (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Unduna, burlydee, MRA NY

                The same cannot be said about healthcare.  If you contract an aggressive cancer or heart disease or diabetes, there is no going around it. You get treatment or you will die.

                You are going to die whether you have health insurance or not.  Lots and lots of people in this world live and die without health insurance.  No one is going to live forever with or without health insurance.

                So health insurance is optional...yes? There is no darwinian law of the jungle rule that states health insurance is a right.  So it is optional.

                Just as logical as you telling me I can go without a car in my rural location when you know nothing about where I live.

                •  No shit sherlock. (0+ / 0-)

                  You've discovered the secret of mortality:  everyone's going to die.  Bravo!  Good for you!

                  But no one should have to die a slow and painful death from a treatable illness in the "richest nation on earth".  But that is exactly what is happening to people every day who are denied life saving and life sustaining treatments from health insurance companies.

                  The same cannot be said for FUCKING AUTO INSURANCE!  The two are not COMPARABLE.

                  You are entitled to express your opinion. But you are NOT entitled to agreement.

                  by DawnG on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:54:34 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

      •  Totally wrong. (0+ / 0-)

        I assume that comment was a (bad) joke.

      •  or to rent, or to borrow a car, or to use zipcars (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        The Silent Consensus

        car owners buy auto insurance, not drivers.

        It's to protect the persons OUTSIDE the car from the harm that is often caused by your very dangerous weapon.

    •  There is competition with car insurance... (16+ / 0-)

      ...for my money and business.

      "Don't bet against us" -President Barack Obama

      by 2questions on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:07:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Auto insurance will cover me. (55+ / 0-)

      End of story.  I get in an accident, it will pay for it.  Even if I'm at fault.  The rates might go up, but I'm still covered.

      So it's not the same comparison, because if I'm forced to buy health insurance that won't cover me, it's not the same.

      Not to mention...the auto insurance industry? It regulated much, much better than the health insurance industry.

      If I see some regulations and true health insurance industry controls, I might be interested in this plan.

      Until then...public option is the only way to keep the companies honest.

    •  Automobile insurance is optional (21+ / 0-)

      Whether or not to drive is a choice, it's not a basic human right, and you can survive without owning a car.

      Health care is a basic human right and everyone has to have it at some point or another. When something is an absolute necessity and it's mandated that you must have insurance simply because you're breathing, without strong regulation (which the insurers are also fighting against) there's nothing keeping them from taking your money and providing little or nothing in return.

      When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace. -Jimi Hendrix -6.0 -5.33

      by Cali Techie on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:08:07 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I can afford my (22+ / 0-)

      car insurance. It costs about the same as cable does and fixing a car does not ruin you.

      "And if my thought-dreams could be seen They'd probably put my head in a guillotine" Bob Dylan

      by shaharazade on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:11:12 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I agree (7+ / 0-)

        Part of the problem is the ridiculous cost of medical procedures in this country versus the coverage that insurance will give you.  If someone runs into you, you can generally fix the car with the insurance money or take the insurance money and invest in an equivalent automobile if your ride is totalled.

        Many American's insurance won't even cover a routine hospital visit in the event of a bad flu.

        I got a parasite in a third world country last fall.  At the end of the day I spent over $30K worth of medical bills in four months.  Luckily, I had good insurance and just paid small copays.  Not everyone is so lucky.

        I think there is a real discussion that needs to be had about whether or not the public option will fix this problem.

      •  Worst analogy ever. (11+ / 0-)

        The difference between car and health insurance is MASSIVE.   First off, if your call is totalled, you can always go out and get a new one.  You only have on life, one heart, one brain, etc.   If these things go, you are screwed.   A car is a priveledge...an option that most people take part in.  However, life is NOT an option...it is a right.  As such, car insurance doesn't have the same ability as the health insurers to essentially hold you hostage for more money/profits.

        Second, car costs are generally one time expenses.  Even buying a new car if you old one is written off, is a limited expense.  However, health costs is you are really sick, keep going and going and going.  Car insurance pays out and they are done with you.  Health insurance is meant to STAY THERE and keep paying out as long as necessary.  

        The only way car insurance would be comparable was if car companies could drop good drivers from their roles the second they got into an accident, then refuse to pay out.  Or if car companies could refuse converage if you went to repair shops that were outside their system.  Or if car insurance employees called up the repair shop and told them what was REALLY wrong and how to fix it, instead of listening to the mechanics.  Or if car insurance employees investigate your driving and car history and then blame the current claim on a "pre-existing driving/car condition" and then refuse to pay.

        Whomever started this debate is clearly clueless.  Comparing health care to car insurance is ridiculous.

      •  Another really important point (6+ / 0-)

        My auto insurance is 50-100 per month (depending on if I take the personal liability option).

        My health insurance is just under 700 per month.

        At one point, when I was broke, I lived in my insured car and maintained my health insurance because I had to decide between that and rent :/

        ...on a good day I bowl a 19

        by mahakali overdrive on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:36:10 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  ...and if your car dies, (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tmo, shaharazade, Pebbles

        you can get a replacement for $500. POS, sure, but it will get you there.

        todo lo que tienes que hacer es seguir a los gusanos

        by VictorLaszlo on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:41:52 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I can't buy a new me if insurance blocks repair (6+ / 0-)

        Car insurance repairs/replaces manufactured product.

        If I die because health insurance denies me preventive care, I can't be "replaced" with lawsuit money.

        Auto insurance doesn't prevent damage.
        Health insurance can.

        Bad drivers can pay more & still be insured.
        Sick people (or potentially sick) cannot now force coverage.

        Auto insurance can't refuse to cover me for months or years when I buy a new car. Health insurance can currently nail me with such canards. I'm a pre-existing human.

        Taxpayers are not forced to buy my car emergency "treatment."

        De fund + de bunk = de EXIT--->>>>>

        by Neon Mama on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:46:04 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  As noted, there is competition (21+ / 0-)

      There are nearly 1,000 companies currently actively selling automobile insurance in the US. Some are very local, some sell to limited markets, but you have many, many choices, no matter where you live.

      And the primary reason automobile insurance is mandatory if you have a car is not to protect you, or the car, but to protect others. It's the "liability" component that is the real mandatory nut. I want you to be required to buy insurance so that if you're taking on your cell phone and crash into me, my property and health interests are covered.

    •  asdf (20+ / 0-)

      Driving is a privilege, not a right.

      Health care is a right, not a privilege. Or that's how it should be, anyway.

      If I wrecked my car today, the insurance company would foot the bill. I would pay my deductible and that would be the end of it.

      Health insurers would find a way to get rid of my policy if I suddenly developed cancer.

      No, I don't feel the same way about auto insurance, though I understand the question wasn't directed at me. I would say the major difference between the two is that if I got into an accident that totaled my car, State Farm wouldn't investigate to see if I'd dented the fender previously to rescind my policy. Because that's what health insurance companies do, they see a wreck and try to find a dent, in the guise of a pre-existing condition.

      Vast difference between the two. One gives me what I pay for, and insures me based on proven risk factors, and charges me based on my own experience behind the wheel. One does everything it can to rip me off.

    •  One can choose to not drive... (13+ / 0-)

      What is the alternative choice to living?

      [Journalism] is media agnostic. - Kos

      by RichM on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:13:34 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I wish auto insurance was like the old days (9+ / 0-)

      where you insured your own vehicle, for the amount you wanted to.  

      Also, driving is a privilege.  One's health should be a right.

    •  Hell yes, I do (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      importer, Jagger, Front Toward Enemy

      Since they made it mandatory the cost of no fault has skyrocketed. The government has no damned buisness forcing people to buy any sort of insurance from private insurance corporations.

      I though that sort of government coercion went out with Kings and Barons...oh wait we have a new economic royalty don't we. I wonder when Congress is going to get around to issuing the CEO class royal titles and other appertaining rights?

      We need a damned revolution of the 1776 sort our so called elected representatives and executive officers work for corporate America not the citizens who vote them into office we are being taxed without representation and turned into slaves of the CEO class...screw that and them! ...Soonest.

      The young man who has not wept is a savage, and the old man who will not laugh is a fool. George Santayana

      by Bobjack23 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:18:35 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  in your world view (0+ / 0-)

        who pays for your car to get fixed when someone rear ends you?

        •  That gets to be my buissness and none of... (0+ / 0-)

          ...yours. Is that too complicated for you to understand?

          Trust me there are all sorts of ways to handle that just as there was before mandatory no fault. I drove safely and insured many years before mandatory no fault and bought liability and collision for a lot less than no fault sells for today. Mandatory no fault was a money making scheme hatched and bribed from state legislators by the insurance industry.

          Are you by chance tied in the insurance industry?

          The young man who has not wept is a savage, and the old man who will not laugh is a fool. George Santayana

          by Bobjack23 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:39:49 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  The Roads Are Crowded - It's a Shared Risk (0+ / 0-)

          If I could afford to drive a classic 1940's V-12 Packard, fully restored, then it would behoove me to insure it fully - at my expense. It wouldn't be fair for me to expect any old hoopdy driver to pay out hundreds extra a year just so I could show-off my wealth and good taste on the road.

          Worried about being rear-ended? Drive a beater. It'll get you where you want to go about as fast as a lux-mobile costing more than most people make in a year.

          best,

          john

          I support socialized water

          by jabney on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:27:15 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Uninsured motorist has gone from a couple bucks (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ChurchofBruce

        years ago to $180.00 to cover my two vehicles this year.  Common sense would dictate that, if EVERYONE bought auto insurance, there would hardly be a need for UI. It is costing almost as much as my collision coverage.  The message being that there a lot of people out there ignoring the mandatory insurance requirements.

        In this state getting out of the vehicle and running is a form of insurance.  

        •  Cost less if they didn't fix bodies too (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          jabney

          If doctors fixed injured bodies paid by Medicare Early, instead of Geico making those decisions and paying those bills - Geico would be happier too.

          Lou Dobbs is asking someone to assassinate Howard Dean with a stake to the heart. How can this be legal?

          by mrobinson on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:45:23 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  No, because my car's not being denied coverage (14+ / 0-)

      for "pre-existing conditions."  

      My Karma just ran over your Dogma

      by FoundingFatherDAR on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:19:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  For the last time. (8+ / 0-)

      Health insurance is not, never will be and never has been equitable to automobile insurance.

      My being forced to pay for junk insurance that does not cover wellness check, routine screenings and preventative measures does nothing to lower the cost of public insurance once (if?) I make it to an age where I am on Medicare.  As far as I know, liability insurance is all the insurance that is mandatory in any state in which insurance is necessary. When the state makes certain liability coverage necessary, that state is literally saying: "Before you get on the road, you must have a minimal ability to pay for X amount of damage done to other cars through your own actions."

      That is not even close to what mandatory junk insurance with high premiums and deductibles represents.  The two forms of insurance, mandates aside, are not at all comparable.

      I am not a freaking car.

      "We know now that Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob."-FDR

      by electricgrendel on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:23:01 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The difference (7+ / 0-)

      is that mandatory auto ins. is mainly about protecting other drivers and pedestrians from the negligence of the insured.

      That said, I for one have always believed that state gov'ts should offer or mandate non-profit car insurance. Nobody should be forced to purchase anything that someone else is making fat profits from.

      Al Qeada is a faith-based initiative.

      by drewfromct on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:23:05 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  excellent question (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tmo

      this may turn out to be a magnificent thread. in fact, i wish it was the rhetorical underpinnings to a diary.

    •  I didn't drive until I was 32 (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tmo, Audri, Pebbles

      and grew up in a carless household. Very few of my friends' parents had cars either. We lived full and complete lives.

      The only way to preserve true freedom in the event of a health insurance mandate is to commit suicide in all its myriad forms.

      The comparison with car insurance mandates is a pitifully weak one that is trotted out again and again, most likely because there is no legitimate argument that can be made.

      The weak in courage is strong in cunning-William Blake

      by beltane on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:38:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Two points... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tmo, The Walrus, Audri
      (1) You don't need to own a car. Lots of people managed to live in both urban and rural locations before Henry Ford arrived on the scene. Lots of people still do.

      OTOH, having a body is still a requirement.

      (2) If you want to characterize it as a tax, however, it's important to remember that it's not a tax on owning a car: It's a tax on driving your car on public streets. It's a giant public option.

      So, in reality, the comparison between auto insurance and health insurance is not apt.

    •  There's a fundamental difference (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tmo, SoCaliana

      Aside from what slinkerwink notes about the fact that in most parts of the country one can choose not to pay insurance by not driving.

      Auto insurance premiums are generally low and affordable because most people never use their insurance.

      However, most people will use their health insurance. In fact, that's the entire point of health insurance. It exists to be used.

      Finally, auto insurance mandates are far from successful at covering the entire driving population. At least 20% of California drivers are uninsured, which is a far larger percentage than the amount of undocumented immigrant drivers.

      I'm not part of a redneck agenda - Green Day

      by eugene on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:44:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I do feel that way about auto insurance (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Audri

      but I know the mandate for it will never go away.

      It even makes sense (despite it offending my sorta libertarian-ish temperament)because it will provide a way to purchase a different vehicle or repair the current one in case of accident. Denying a claim on car insurance generally won't kill anybody.

      What some people don't seem to get is that health care is not a commodity. It really can come down to life or death for human beings.  There should not be a price tag on that - people should just have access to it if and when they need it.  Anything else is barbaric.

      If people don't have insurance, it is generally because they can't afford it. What the hell good is mandating they buy it if they don't have the money?

      Jesus Christ! We could have just expanded Medicare to cover everybody, but the damn Congress is so corrupt and feckless they have to do it the hard way.  What the people need and what it says in the Preamble and Article One about the general welfare of the USA is not on their radar. Of course, I shouldn't be surprised. Most of them don't give a crap about the rest of the Constitution (except for some wingnuts and their obsession with the Second).

      •  That's it right there. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Audri

        We could have just expanded Medicare to cover everybody

        And that's what a lot of people were trying to do, but as you said the bums in congress (with their health care that expands to cover practically everyone they breathe on) just will not do it, unless we somehow force them to.

      •  Food is essential to life (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        The Silent Consensus

        and it is a commodity.

        If you cannot buy food, you'll starve. Yes, we have government food programs, but nobody is seriously arguing that they're a right. It's something we've collectively decided to do, both because it's the compassionate course, and because hungry people rebel... but we don't have to.

        Of course, moving health care to a cash-n-carry model like food (the true big-L Libertarian position, IMHO) would drive down prices to what the buyers could afford, and would therefore make doctors much, much poorer... and we can't have that, now can we?

        Middlemen drive up prices, always.

        So, if we're going to have them in an arena that has life and death impacts, it makes sense for the middleman to be publicly owned.

        The health insurance model is not "free market economics". It's monopoly / scarcity economics. They're different.

        --Shannon

        "It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees." -- Emiliano Zapata Salazar
        "Dissent is patriotic. Blind obedience is treason." --me

        by Leftie Gunner on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:44:15 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Scarcity (0+ / 0-)

        What some people don't seem to get is that health care is not a commodity. It really can come down to life or death for human beings.  There should not be a price tag on that - people should just have access to it if and when they need it.  Anything else is barbaric.

        If you figure out how to get infinite resources (doctors and medical technology), I'm on board with that.

        From a moral perspective, need is not a claim. I agree with Leftie Gunner on that. No one has a right to other people's services and products, period

    •  I don't want health insurance provided, (0+ / 0-)

      I want health CARE.

      All the real Christians have already been raptured.

      by Audri on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:02:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Auto insurance (0+ / 0-)

      insures the damage you may do to other people. You're not required to insure damage to your own car

  •  Worst of both worlds (9+ / 0-)

    Hey, just like the Holder investigation!

  •  A hearty HUZZZAH! (15+ / 0-)

    I completely agree.  They can pry money from my cold dead hands before I'm forced to buy some crappy private plan that is a siphon to my wallet.

  •  It becomes a tax payer (63+ / 0-)

    subsidized insurance company profit mazimizing program without a public option.

    That's why the DLCers love meaningless coops.

    If the public option were not important, why do they care so much?  Their oppositions shows the public option is key.

    They "prefer an America where parents will lie awake at night worried if they can afford health care their children need."

    by TomP on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:03:39 AM PDT

  •  Excellent story, KagroX! (18+ / 0-)

    Glad to read some of the FPers pushing back on this incrementalist shit.

    I'm on Twitter. I'm also a part of the FDL team on health reform.

    by slinkerwink on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:03:45 AM PDT

  •  What (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Geekesque, Populista

    if what is passed isn't "crappy"?

    •  If it isn't crappy, then I'll take it. (22+ / 0-)

      But if what's passed is, "You have to buy what's already out there that you didn't like enough to buy last time," then fuck it.

      If you're going to take my money, take my money. But I'm not going along with a plan where you only force me to give money to someone else.

      Come and get it if you want it. I'm OK with the government taking it and using it for something. I'm not OK with the government pretending they're not really doing anything, but really forcing me to pay a private company for a private product that I don't want and that I don't believe will help me.

      •  fair enough (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lesley, ChurchofBruce

        I'll be exceedingly pissed if we don't have a public option, but really, what I see a lot of people saying around here is that "no public option" = worse than the status quo. I'm not sure that's accurate.  For example, if the bill included the following:

        - subsidies for people up to 400% of the poverty line

        - expansion of medicaid

        - caps on costs / out-of pocket expenses

        - caps on co-pays

        - caps on premiums

        - ban on precluding coverage for pre-existing conditions

        - national exchange

        Things like that are very important.

        •  Those are all good things. (6+ / 0-)

          But combined with straight-up mandate, they don't outweigh the problem. At least not until I'm positive that paying money for premiums will mean getting my health care paid for, as agreed, every time.

          Not me paying my premiums, then getting denied in creative ways, and having to wait for Congress to gather up the gumption to start having hearings and dumping Sternly Worded Letters left and right, threatening to assemble Blue Ribbon Panels to study the long-term feasibility of assembling an even Bluer Ribbon Panel to look into whether or not someone ought to look into it.

          I want someplace to go where my money will pay for medicine. Right now, this bill says I'm on the hook for paying a private insurer 30 points, on a deal to finance my future health care costs, and that if they decide to screw around and hold onto my cash a little longer and earn more dividends on it while I'm in the hospital, my remedy is... binding arbitration.

          From my hospital bed.

          Oh, they can't drop me. And they won't. But they won't pay me, either. What do we have in the bill as regards a, "No fucking around, either! We mean it!" clause?

          •  Totally agree (0+ / 0-)

            One of the unspoken benefits of the public option is the opposite of what the teabaggers would have you think.  And that is that if people start getting shit denied that really should be covered, the media will be all over it and pressure will immediately be on elected officials to fix it.  After all, it's a government program.  But almost no matter what you put in the bill, private companies will drag their feet and the timeframe between the problem and the recourse will likely be huge.

            I mean, that is what private companies do - make a profit.

            Want a progressive global warming novel, not a right wing rant? Go to www.edwardgtalbot.com for a free audio thriller.

            by eparrot on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:40:16 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  No (0+ / 0-)
          - subsidies for people up to 400% of the poverty line

          awesome!!! ... IF and only IF there is a 4% overhead public option.

          If there is just private insurance company products like there are now, no. In fact, HELL NO. It's just another tax payer subsidy to the already wildly wealthy private insurance executives and Congress can stick that where the sun don't shine, too, along with the mandate + no public option plan that sounds like it was thunk up by some Winger who REALLY wants health reform to do a big fat belly flop.

          You think there's opposition now? huh. Give us a mandate with tax payer subsidies for poor folks but no public option and you will see opposition grow exponentially.

          If you don't know history, you don't know anything. You're a leaf that doesn't know it is part of a tree. ~Michael Crichton, Timeline

          by Leslie H on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:32:47 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  correct me if I'm wrong (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        taylormattd

        but don't all the proposals require insurance to stop making coverage decisions based on pre-existing conditions?

        Personally, I won't support a bill that doesn't include a public option, because I think it's a gigantic sell-out to the insurance companies, but the plans I've seen talked about all make even private insurance a good deal less crappy.

        So David, I'm curious would you support a bill without a public option that requires private insurers to accept all callers, and won't be allowed to drop you if you had acne when you were 14, and might even be subsidized by the government if you make below 3x the federal poverty limit?

        We have always known that heedless self interest was bad morals; we know now that it is bad economics. - FDR 1936

        by AndersOSU on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:39:39 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I might have to. (3+ / 0-)

          My serious gripe is that if you pass such a bill and I find that my alternatives suck and I prefer to remain uninsured, you can't just say, "Well, you have to finance these guys bonuses whether you like it or not, use it or not."

          If you're going to mandate that I finance universal coverage -- to include private coverage -- as a matter of law, then I want to see the margins and overhead on those private plans crammed down to public option levels.

          •  cram down? congress does not have to d cram down (0+ / 0-)

            waxman and rockefeller both have asked for health insurance company records. let's see if they both keep at it.

            what was henry's nickname? the mustache of justice. when jay was out in 2006, for back surgery at hopkins, we over at wvablue opined that maybe he had the right kind of spine reinforcement done.

            Anyone who has the power to make you believe absurdities has the power to make you commit injustices--François-Marie Arouet

            by CA Berkeley WV on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:50:08 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Waxman couldn't even pull the trigger on Rove. (0+ / 0-)

              Frankly, in my book, Henry's overrated when it comes to making shit happen.

              Had Karl friggin' Rove dead to rights. And no contempt citation.

              Booooo.

              •  ok. got me. (0+ / 0-)

                and we watched issa and feith play nadler.

                you have talked about the slide to 1600 and how the election of one guy will undo all the scrambling to keep the house and senate. cw and i have written about bills in the hopper. the real deal is that every committee has an oversight function. and the knock after 2006 was that the dems were just going to waste time doing hearings. so like hunter said yesterday, we kept our powder dry.

                i got an email for the conn dem internet director. it made me take a look at the banking website and they had a field hearing on Stanford Securities "alleged fraud". i wonder how many other recess field hearings we missed in the town hall teabag fog.

                Anyone who has the power to make you believe absurdities has the power to make you commit injustices--François-Marie Arouet

                by CA Berkeley WV on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:59:21 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  With You. Totally (24+ / 0-)

    Hello, fellow future lawbreaker.  What a pile of crap that is.

    You can't always tell the truth because you don't always know the truth - but you can always be honest.

    by mattman on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:04:05 AM PDT

  •  We should make it hard on the collection service. (7+ / 0-)

    We can boycott the mandate.  What are they going to do, drag us off to prison?  That would sink the whole idea in a public uproar.

    Nothing is true; everything is permitted.

    by jumpjet on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:04:34 AM PDT

  •  This is exactly what we have in Massachusetts (34+ / 0-)

    A mandate; no public option.  Some assistance if you are very very poor.  But for the average working person without employer paid for insurance, you're screwed.  You either buy the expensive, but crappy insurance that is available to indivuals(Massachusetts now has the highest family premiums in the nation, according to a recent Boston Globe article) or you pay your fine when you file your income tax.  It stinks.

    •  Yep. Almost as if the intent was ... (31+ / 0-)

      ...to sour people on the whole idea of universal coverage by making sure the program sucked.

      Some people would be better off not reading diaries they comment on, since they already have all the answers.

      by Meteor Blades on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:10:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  But but but (0+ / 0-)

        why do so many people laud that terrible program? And why did the liberal Kennedy ever think it was a good plan to begin with?

        To have such a sucky plan be associated with Sen. Kennedy, who by most accounts is supposed to be super concerned about making sure everyone has health coverage, doesn't make sense.

        If that's an example of Kennedy's idea of a good solution to the healthcare crisis, well, I don't miss him in the national debate at this point.

        Help thy brother's boat across the stream, and Lo! Thine own has reached the shore. --Hindu proverb

        by CMYK on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:48:04 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  it's extortion period.... (10+ / 0-)

      "And if my thought-dreams could be seen They'd probably put my head in a guillotine" Bob Dylan

      by shaharazade on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:15:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  We should (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ChurchofBruce, shaharazade, CMYK

        go "Galt". LOL

        •  Yeah. (0+ / 0-)

          It's funny but during Shrub's reign of error, I might have thought once or twice about going "galt," but not too seriously. Now I do. Now that I see that even with all the right ingredients in place for a progressive agenda, it cannot ever happen, I wonder what's the point of being here. American values have been stained by corrupt and rabid capitalism over a long period of time and I just can't relate to it. At all. And there doesn't seem to be any way of changing it appreciably.

          So, yeah. Maybe we should go "galt."

          Help thy brother's boat across the stream, and Lo! Thine own has reached the shore. --Hindu proverb

          by CMYK on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:55:47 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  I would add (3+ / 0-)

      that the hoops to be jumped through just to get Masshealth are not easy either. If it weren't for my kids I wouldn't bother,and I have a couple of pre-existing conditions.In addition to long term unemployment.

      Peace

    •  See (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mary Mike

      "Auto insurance", "California".

      Are you on the Wreck List? Horde on Garrosh.

      by Moody Loner on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:18:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  We have seen the future and it doesn't work (5+ / 0-)

      here in Massachusetts.

    •  If this takes place nationwide (6+ / 0-)

      under the guise of healthcare "reform" those in our caucus so protective of this poorly run private industry just handed some seats to the GOP, guaranteed, and soured a generation on healthcare reform.  As MeteorBlades suggests, wonder if that's not the point...

      "My favorite is van Susteren"--Kirsten Gillibrand, FoxNews 'Progressive'

      by GN1927 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:32:34 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Didn't we always (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      CMYK

      have the highest premiums? We've got the highest everything else! :)

      The good thing is that MA absolutely does have more stringent controls on the insurance industry than anywhere else. Recission is against the law, pre existing coverage exclusions are limited to 6 months or one year, etc.

      DKos: The left's home for sanctimonious defeatism since 2008.
      "The last time we broke a president, we got Reagan"--Bush Bites

      by ChurchofBruce on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:48:19 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  What good is that if people can't afford it? (0+ / 0-)

        The middle and marginal classes are falling through the cracks and many go without health care. That's pretty much the opposite of the stated intent.

        Help thy brother's boat across the stream, and Lo! Thine own has reached the shore. --Hindu proverb

        by CMYK on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:03:26 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I'm in the marginal classes (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          CMYK

          I had health insurance long before MA required it. Now, I get it through my employer (MA hammered employers that didn't offer it to some degree, but probably needed to do it more).

          The individual plans in MA start at 250 a month. However, if you're an individual, you'd only pay that 250 a month if you made more than 34K a year and if you don't have insurance through your employer and if you're over 26 years of age.

          There are a lot of people here, and I've read their diaries, that are paying a lot more than that for coverage that can get cut off at any time through insurer capriciousness. MA is not perfect, but it is better.

          DKos: The left's home for sanctimonious defeatism since 2008.
          "The last time we broke a president, we got Reagan"--Bush Bites

          by ChurchofBruce on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 03:42:46 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'm glad you can afford it and it's (0+ / 0-)

            working for you. What happens if you get laid off, who pays for your insurance then? I get confused about the individual mandate vs. the employer mandate. At the national level, there is talk of unhitching healthcare coverage from employment so that people don't lose insurance between jobs and aren't shackled to a bad job for the health insurance coverage. How does an employer mandate fit into that, at either the national level or in MA, do you know?

            Help thy brother's boat across the stream, and Lo! Thine own has reached the shore. --Hindu proverb

            by CMYK on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 04:46:05 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I dunno (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              CMYK

              It's not an issue at the moment in MA, because, at this time, it hasn't been unhitched from employment. So, yes, employers who employ over a certain amount of people in MA who don't provide it pay a subsidy. Remember, MA designed this plan a few years ago, when "going after WalMart because they don't have insurance for their employees!" was all the rage (even here!).

              I make 18K a year and I have both my kids on my insurance; if I should ever lose my insurance, I qualify for MassHealth. I'd be better off if I got laid off, actually :) but only in terms of health insurance.

              DKos: The left's home for sanctimonious defeatism since 2008.
              "The last time we broke a president, we got Reagan"--Bush Bites

              by ChurchofBruce on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 06:01:16 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  So there's a safety net in place. (0+ / 0-)

                That's promising. One more question: are small businesses exempt from providing health insurance in MA, and if so what do those employees do for coverage, and who pays for it?

                As a side note, I hear a lot about employer mandates but usually there's an exemption for small businesses and it tends to create a lot of murkiness where people fall through the cracks.

                Help thy brother's boat across the stream, and Lo! Thine own has reached the shore. --Hindu proverb

                by CMYK on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:56:51 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  I wrote about mandates and the Ins. Jackals... (21+ / 0-)

    .
     . . . last week, to wit:  It's Run By Evil People.  This was written in the wake of NPR's giving a more-or-less unchallenged "interview" (promo spot) to one of the Insurance Jackals Spokeswine.

      Enjoy, grimace, whatever.

    bg
    _________________

    "I have to be going now. I feel... sticky." Anthony Bourdain

    by BenGoshi on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:05:44 AM PDT

  •  The "free market" ain't free if consumers aren't (23+ / 0-)

    free to choose among options.  Adam Smith's "invisible hand" requires both producers and consumers to move as free agents.  You put the anti-capitalist, un-American essence of the problem at hand wonderfully:  "You're going to force me to pay an insurance company for shit insurance that as a free market actor I decided not to even try to buy?"  Exactly.  This is about enslaving consumers and taking away freedoms in the marketplace.  

  •  Exactly, David. But let me make a bet ... (55+ / 0-)

    ...that we will soon be hearing "this is better than nothing" commentary from various capitulators.

    Some people would be better off not reading diaries they comment on, since they already have all the answers.

    by Meteor Blades on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:06:21 AM PDT

  •  Mandates.... (23+ / 0-)

    ....without a public option are a sure way to lose badly in 2010. That's why DLC stands for Democrats Losing Consistently.

  •  Yes its the worst of all worlds, (19+ / 0-)

    including the one we have now.  

    Terrible, terrible idea.   Make us buy something that's unregulated and unprotected, even if we can't afford it.  Yeah, that's the ticket.

    Not!

    I'm sick of GOP SOP!

    by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:07:28 AM PDT

  •  Barack Obama campaigned vigorously (33+ / 0-)

    on "Public option, no mandates." This was one of his decisive differences from HRC. We cannot end up with the precise opposite, but it sometimes looks like we are headed that way: no public option, yes mandates. Bleh. bleh and unacceptable. keep up the fight!

  •  Why is the DLC protecting insurance company (17+ / 0-)

    profits and not the consumer?

    The government continues to burden the regular people with profit-making schemes from big industries.

  •  With you on this one. (10+ / 0-)

    I'm not going to do it either.

  •  Fifth columnists (7+ / 0-)

    We have fifth columnists in our party, in congress and out, that seek to derail the progressive agenda.  This is why Democrats always have problems governing.

    "And the biggest self of self is, indeed, self." Mark Sanford

    by Paleo on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:09:16 AM PDT

  •  Amen, brother Dave. /nt (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    shaharazade, iran 4 president

    Excessive literary production is a social offense. - George Eliot

    by pyramus on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:09:28 AM PDT

  •  I may cancel my junk insurance to make the point. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    shaharazade, iran 4 president

    Hell, I'm tempted to do it anyway, pre-existing condition and all.

    One nation, indivisible.

    by Doctor Frog on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:09:32 AM PDT

  •  We're all teabaggers now... if this passes... (26+ / 0-)

    Yes- I agree-

    If there is a mandate with NO PUBLIC OPTION, I'll become a teabagger.

    I'm already suspicious of the "bailout" $$$.  But I'll let my higher reasoning take over, barely.  

    I have insurance through my employer, so it won't impact me personally- but if they pass this, I can't defend 'em, I'd probably protest, and you know what-- at that point I'd conceded the libertarians have a point and I might even vote for a third party in 2010, depending on how my beloved bluedog Congressman Dennis Moore votes (I'm not hopeful).  

  •  Mandates without a PO... WTF!! (23+ / 0-)

    They might as well call this bill The Health Ins.Industry Relief act of 2009 if they remove the PO and leave a Mandate to buy Private Health Ins. or else. This sucks and if the Dems. can't see it's political poison WTF is that all about?

    "It's better to die on your feet then live on your knees" E. Zapata

    by Blutodog on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:10:41 AM PDT

  •  There I was, looking into Budget Function 920 (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AllisonInSeattle, sandblaster

    and you hit us with the big picture, right in the face.

    It's like the more energy or clean water question we get stuck with here. You still have to hydrate in the dark.

    Anyone who has the power to make you believe absurdities has the power to make you commit injustices--François-Marie Arouet

    by CA Berkeley WV on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:10:45 AM PDT

  •  You know. (18+ / 0-)

    If the Democrats want Obama to be a 1 term president, and to lose their fake 60 vote majority in 2010, this is how it'll be done.  

    "Give me a water board, Dick Cheney, and one hour, and I'll have him confess to the Sharon Tate murders." -Jesse Ventura

    by Beelzebud on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:10:47 AM PDT

  •  But what about the insurance companies? (13+ / 0-)

    Won't somebody please think of the insurance companies?

    For great justice.

    by phenry on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:10:49 AM PDT

  •  Yup... (9+ / 0-)

    I give it a 70% chance that this is what will 'pass' as reform.  A mandate to buy crappy insurance with a government subsidy for those making some multiplier or less of the 'poverty' line with some progression in the supplement.  Oh sure, they will probably add some sweeteners like pre-existing condition or 'portability', but in order to get those concessions, they will water down the 'employer mandate'.  That means everybody, except for the elderly and the super-rich will have the same fucking crappy health-insurance that they will be paying way too much for.

    [Journalism] is media agnostic. - Kos

    by RichM on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:10:55 AM PDT

    •  I think there's something else (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      zett, wsexson, Prognosticator

      coming down the pike:

      **mandates plus a Public Option in Name Only, designed to be "fair" to private insurers, so it will be chronically underfunded with high premiums and not immediately available to anyone who wants to enroll in it.  Most people will thus either choose or be forced to purchase private insurance rather than this program.

      So they get the same result (most people are forced to buy shitty private insurance policies), yet certain media whores who have made careers out of managing media perceptions get to run up and down claiming "I supported a public option!  I fought for you!"

      That's what's coming down the pike in my opinion, and I'd give the odds of this a strong 75% or more.  A Public Option In Name Only is what we need to watch out for.

      "My favorite is van Susteren"--Kirsten Gillibrand, FoxNews 'Progressive'

      by GN1927 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:46:59 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  i will NEVER purchase private insurance (14+ / 0-)

    fuck their mandate.  

  •  Romneycare? (5+ / 0-)

    No thanks.

    Try force feeding us a shit sandwich - see what happens.

    Let the great world spin for ever down the ringing grooves of change. - Tennyson

    by bumblebums on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:11:00 AM PDT

  •  Individual mandates are not ideal. (10+ / 0-)

    Regardless of public option or not.

  •  No public option = bohica. (3+ / 0-)

    President Bush has left the building. And it's in terrible shape.

    by perro amarillo on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:11:15 AM PDT

  •  Is the Democratic party our party? Who are these (11+ / 0-)

    supposed Democrats who support our enemies?  This is totally messed up.  The DLC might as well get out there with their Obama-Joker, anti-socialism posters and their tea bags hanging from their baseball caps.

  •  No shit (18+ / 0-)

    You want your money, you can come and find me and try to take it.

    The idea is so ridiculous I’m amazed that anyone is even proposing it.

    What are they going to do? Set up prisons to house the people who refuse to send money to private companies?

  •  Thank you for taking on the fight. . . (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, SoCaliana, iran 4 president

    for ALL of us!  Great Diary!!!  And thank you Slink (too) and everyone at FDL for having the guts to stand up to the Lobbyists/Corporations/Banksters for the rest of us folks!

  •  Excellent conclusion! (9+ / 0-)

    This is, in fact, the "core" of the healthcare dilemma - if this bill is split into two parts with the reform on one bill and the public option on the other, it truly becomes impossible for most middle class families in the market.

    To mandate that everyone be insured when that's precisely WHY they are not insured right now (vulgar premiums to the tune of $700+ per person/per month - and that's with a $5,000 deductible and a 20% co-pay), we're right back at square one....essentially doing nothing, zippo, nada.

    Healthcare reform sans public option is NO reform at all and, in fact, will force people to buy health insurance and not be able to pay for food and mortgages...essentially driving the working class into the ground and into bankruptcy.

    If this occurs, the bankruptcy numbers will soar through the roof in this country...taking us back down the tubes toward another Great Depression.

  •  I am totsally with you on this one. Unfunded (7+ / 0-)

    mandates I mean. Athough it doesn't personally affect me as I am on Medicare, basically I have to carry supplemental insurance if i wish to protect my family from a catastropic expense stemming from having to cover what is not covered by Medicare should i have a catastrophe.

    But that is my CHOICE.  No one forces me to carry a supplemental policy.

    Forcing people to carry private health insurance in no way can be enforced, what are you going to do?  put them all in prison? where they would get health care anyway.

    Forcing the tax paying public to pay the insurance through subsidies for those who refuse or cannot pay them is also anathmea to the American way and I would imagine un-constitutional.

    This entire dilemma brings us right back to why the only fair and equitable way to get everyone covered, maybe not equally, is a socialist national health system or a Single Payor system.

    It boggles my tiny mind why those who so against it cannot see that it is the only way to cover everyone. But then i suppose the 30$ or so who don't want it don't want everyone covered.

    This is why this debate is so crucial and needs to continue until everyone gets it.

  •  Yup. Worst of both worlds nt (7+ / 0-)

    Free speech? Yeah, I've heard of that. Have you?

    by dinotrac on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:12:46 AM PDT

  •  Don't forget that the government is going to (10+ / 0-)

    subsidise the crappy insurance with our tax dollars. It's just another wind fall for private corporations using tax dollars and mandating individuals.

    Blue cross of NJ just went for profit a few months ago. Do you think thye did that because they thought real reform was going to pass?

    To sin by silence when they should protest makes cowards of men~~ Abraham Lincoln

    by Tanya on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:13:17 AM PDT

  •  The progressive caucus has firmly stated that (6+ / 0-)

    they will not vote for a bill that doesn't contain a robust public option.  Republicans will not vote for any bill, period.  Sounds like the DLC proposal has no chance of passing, unless somebody arm-twists the progessive caucus to go along.

    Barack Obama in the Oval Office. There's a black man who knows his place.

    by Greasy Grant on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:13:45 AM PDT

  •  You are paying for it either way.... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Audri, dark daze, dotalbon, SoCaliana

    Go look at all the E.R. Visits by the population who does NOT have insurance, and it's the taxpayers picking that one up....NOT the insurance companies.

  •  I definitely want a public option (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    taylormattd, PsychoSavannah

    However, that said, if you're going to require insurance companies to accept all patients regardless of pre-existing conditions, then there has to be some kind of mandate system in place requiring people to buy insurance. Otherwise, people will just opt out until they start having medical problems, then buy insurance and get all the tests and treatments they need. I'm sure you can see the problems this would cause, no?

    •  Which is why you have to have a public option (7+ / 0-)

      YOU CANNOT FORCE PEOPLE TO PAY PRIVATE CORPORATIONS.

      Has this ever been done in our history?

      •  What is the matter with you people? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        dark daze

        You're forced to pay private corporations all the time.  

        Al que no le guste el caldo, le dan dos tazas.

        by Rich in PA on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:24:48 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  But it goes through the state and (0+ / 0-)

          federal gov't "clearinghouses" - to the likes of Halliburton, Blackwater, Banksters, sorry carmakers who don't keep up with modern demand, etc.

          And since these interests OBVIOUSLY control our public officials more than WE do, we are, for all practical purposes, being forced to pay them, because no one would give away such sums as We have lately, without getting something of value in RETURN!

          This "Just give it DIRECTLY to them!" way is actually more honest... sad to say.  Brazen, of course, but more honest.

    •  Yes. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wsexson, Audri, sweeper, SoCaliana

      The problem it creates is that in gives the royal charter to print money to private corporations, so that they can stay in a business that shouldn't be a business.

      •  I agree that it shouldn't be a business (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Audri

        Which is why I want a public option. Hell, I want single-payer, but that's obviously not happening.

        But the fact is, insurance is a system of distributed risks, and it works better the more the risks are distributed. That's true regardless of whether the public or private sector is paying for health care.

        •  So what's the "risk" for insurers? (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Brooke In Seattle, sweeper, SoCaliana

          What are they risking in this guaranteed, 50 million customer expansion?

          •  Very little (0+ / 0-)

            But the point is, without the mandates, they wouldn't be risking anything either. It'd just be a government-mandated bankruptcy for them.

            Now, I have very little sympathy for the insurance companies, but if you want to move to a single-payer system, that's not the way to do it.

            •  Well... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              wsexson

              Frankly, you can't sell me on a regulatory scheme that doesn't actually have serious criminal penalties attached.

              If you think I'm going to buy into a mandate in exchange for a regulatory scheme that depends on Blue Ribbon Panels, Congressional investigations and Sternly Worded Letters to get me my coverage on time, when I need it, you can go fuck yourself.

              Not you, personally -- although I won't stand in the way if you were going to go fuck yourself on your own accord -- but you get the idea.

    •  Difference in who you're forced to buy from. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Audri

      Having a mandate to buy insurance via the government "exchange" at a reasonable rate is one thing.  
      A mandate to buy it directly from the scum who will charge excessive premiums for nil coverage is quite unacceptable.

      My Karma just ran over your Dogma

      by FoundingFatherDAR on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:33:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I wanna know what the rules are for the companies (0+ / 0-)

        being on the exchange?

        What has congress demanded of them?  I know it's been said they cannot deny coverage because of preexisting conditions--but what else?

        The basis for being considered part of the exchange needs to be transparent.

        I thought the whole point for the public option was to exemplify what the other insurance companies were supposed to do in order to get on the exchange list.

    •  There are alternatives (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Audri

      Because there are alternative ways of controlling for adverse selection.  Here are a few:

      1.  You can have an open enrollment period so that if someone fails to enroll by the end of the period they have to wait one or even two years to enroll again.  So there is a clear risk that they will be uninsured if they get sick.
      1.  You can require someone enrolling late to pay a surcharge so that they have to pay over time what they would have paid if they had enrolled on time. (Like reverse early Social Security payments, which are lower to make up for the fact that you start payouts earlier)
      1.  You can allow limited underwriting for late enrollees so that their cost will more properly reflect their health, which would be a penalty for not having enrolled earlier when no health status was required.
      1.  You can require the uninsured to pay the equivalent of a "tax" which will be used to reimburse hospitals that are required to pay emergency services.  

      I  just thought of four alternatives to individual mandates off the top of my head.  Mandated purchase of insurance is draconian, especially without competition.

  •  If Obama and Co. kill health insurance reform (10+ / 0-)

    this session by going on the warpath against mandates, he'll have my support and the support of many Americans.  

    The conventional wisdom says any bill is better than no bill, blah blah blah.  What a load of crap.  If Obama shifts gears and puts Congress on the defensive -- either give Americans fair insurance or don't, but you are not going to force mandates on citizens while I'm in office -- just watch his approval ratings shoot up.  

    Then we can re-visit the issue in 2010 with (I hope) a better Congress.  

    It is scarcely possible to conceive of the laws of motion if one looks at them from a tennis ball's point of view. (Brecht)

    by dotalbon on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:15:04 AM PDT

  •  My money's going to Sierra Club, PBS, NRDC first. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sweeper, dotalbon
    Before the scam artists at the big insurance companies get one cent of my $, they'll have to pry it out of my cold dead hands.

    My Karma just ran over your Dogma

    by FoundingFatherDAR on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:15:19 AM PDT

  •  Finally, a FP diary that hits on what (5+ / 0-)

    I've been saying for the past week.  

    Even WITH the public Option - it'd have to be a hell of a lot nicer of an option than what anyone has seriously proposed, before it'd be worth taking the step of mandating americans pay private corps.

    It's fucking ridiculous how many Dems on this site.  THIS SITE. who have been starry eye'd throughout this process.  Fucking idiots.

    Flowers Bloom for my Ex - though Honeybees are pretty cool too.

    by Yoshi En Son on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:15:45 AM PDT

    •  Oh, please..... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      GlowNZ, SoCaliana

      "fucking idiots".....you can do better than that, hopefully.

      •  Guess I touched a nerve, eh? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Prognosticator

        How about YOU do better about supporting real fucking health care reform, or are you too enamored by the Insurance industry that you'll just pretend to support reform because you can hope it'll benefit the industry to the tune of 10's of millions of new customers who have little or no say in the matter?

        Flowers Bloom for my Ex - though Honeybees are pretty cool too.

        by Yoshi En Son on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:45:53 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I've been thinking lately (0+ / 0-)

          of all the things that the left and right have in common, because we really must find and unite over them, to fight the government/corporate juggernaut we're faced with.

          I can now add "fucking idiots" to the list! (scribble scribble...)

          Ha.

          •  In reality (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Prognosticator

            Our country is probably in a lot of trouble. While we (myself included) press for health care reform... We have problems that are going to sink us. Primarily Fiscal Discipline, but it's far from the only one. Education, Health Care, Income Distribution...  really there are plenty of areas where the challenges are snowballing and the odds of getting fixed are basically nil.

            Flowers Bloom for my Ex - though Honeybees are pretty cool too.

            by Yoshi En Son on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 02:50:21 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Congress has bi-partisaned (4+ / 0-)

    this legislation into a trojan horse that will destroy democratic propects for the rest of Obama's term.  And Obama is a party to his own destruction.  

  •  It doesn't surprise me... (7+ / 0-)

    ... that this is what is being talked about. This would be an unmitigated disaster, a complete and total boondoggle and a raw transfer of public wealth to private hands. It wouldn't lower the cost of health care, it wouldn't control costs, it wouldn't take care of those in need, and it wouldn't keep insurance companies honest.

    Of course, what is Congress good at doing nowadays except boondoggle transfers of wealth to private companies?

    If this sort of crap passes, mark my words, things will get a lot worse very quickly. And in 5 or 10 years, Republicans will rightly swoop in with a bunch of "I told ya so" comments, and offer "market based reform" which would get rid of the "mandate" and gut the subsidies to lower income people. In effect, restoring the system to what we have now. And, honestly, there's a good chance it'll work, because this sure as shit won't.

    Without a public option or single payer (enrolled at birth, really), there is no such thing as a workable mandate.

  •  Mnadates without a public option is (8+ / 0-)

    unfair.  That locks us into the death by spreadsheet industry.  We must have a public option BUT I would rather have a single payer system (with private insurance as a legal option).

    Kent Conrad is chasing a white rabbit named Harvey (don't let him co-opt real reform).

    by noofsh on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:16:09 AM PDT

  •  There is no way (8+ / 0-)

    that I will buy unregulated health insurance. No chance.

    I haven't had health insurance for 11 years now, and paid cash for the few times I've needed a doctor. My doctor is very helpful in keeping the cost down, going over my options and the dollar implications versus potential information from tests.

    I was looking forward to the public option, but not fully aware of how it would look.

    If they think I'm going to start paying through the nose for an HMO policy, they are mistaken.

    Never. No f-ing way . . .

  •  And guess who will ride this mandate to victory? (19+ / 0-)

    The Republicans, in 2012, if a mandate without a public option is passed. Everybody will hate it, it will be pegged on Obama as "see what happens when we let Democrats control things?"

    And I'm not sure they'll be wrong.

  •  Watch Rep. Moran's town hall tonight (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, metal prophet, CA Berkeley WV

    in VA, on C-Span, 7 pm Eastern. Howard Dean will be there too, for those who feel buoyed by a dose of Vitamin Dean.  Is there anyone more unequivocal?

    Let the great world spin for ever down the ringing grooves of change. - Tennyson

    by bumblebums on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:16:25 AM PDT

  •  It is a huge give away to the insurance companies (7+ / 0-)

    Government just handed them 47 million 'new' premium paying customers to profit from. Even if the premiums come in the form of subsidies for lower-to mid income citizens. This is a HUGE profit for the insurers.

    I understand the need for mandated insurance for everyone if the insurance companies are going to be required to accept everyone with no pre-existing conditions or 'caps' on lifetime benefits and not quibble about every claim turned in.
    Without the requirement many citizens would just wait until they ARE sick and then purchase insurance. As much as I detest these for-profit companies that isn't fair to them.

    BUT-if we are required to purchase insurance we should also have a NOT FOR PROFIT PUBLIC OPTION to choose from.

    The idea that billions of dollars are going to fatten the already obese wallets of the insurance companies is just obscene.

    YES WE DID! November 4th, 2008

    by Esjaydee on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:16:31 AM PDT

  •  Fucking hell (4+ / 0-)

    Just, fucking hell.

    Are you on the Wreck List? Horde on Garrosh.

    by Moody Loner on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:17:15 AM PDT

  •  Oh, boo-hoo-hoo! I'm so upset! david used naughty (5+ / 0-)

    words! I'm wounded!

    Fucking great piece, David! Talk some fucking sense to these people!

  •  Nixon had it right (5+ / 0-)

    EMPLOYER mandates, not personal mandates.  Now I don't suppose you'd ever get employer mandates through today's Congress (and he couldn't get it through then, either).  But it proves to me again what I've long said...today's Democratic party is to the right of Richard Nixon.  

    •  Employer mandates are the wrong idea (0+ / 0-)

      What if you're not employed, or you're self-employed, or you're hidgepodge-employed like an adjunct professor at 3 or 4 different colleges?

      My sense is that the diarist would not consent to pay any non-trivial amount for health insurance.  And that, my friends, is why we need an individual mandate.  You shouldn't have the right to go without health insurance, because you're fobbing off your health care on others, starting with me.

      Al que no le guste el caldo, le dan dos tazas.

      by Rich in PA on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:23:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Single payer is the answer (6+ / 0-)

        And, no, I'm not fobbing off anything.  I've been unemployed for four years.  That isn't by choice.

        So here's my situation.  The government institutes an individual mandate, requiring me to buy insurance with money I don't have or pay them a fine (for no insurance) with money I don't have.  People who have never been in the situation always believe that people without income receive medicaid.  But, more often then not, they don't.  Medicaid has many thresholds and income is just one.  I own a home.  As such, I do not qualify for medicaid because I do not meet the "assets" threshold.  Now I worked my whole life for my gd house.  It's all I have, really.  And I'll be damned if I'm going to be made to sell it to qualify for medicaid.  All the extensions of medicaid discussed so far deal only with the income threshold.  And, while Obama threw the idea of waivers for folks in my position out there, Congress pretty much killed that baby in the crib.

        So, you see, it's actually the opposite of what you describe.  You're demanding that the guy with zero income and zero resources kick in to cover your bony ass.  Teabaggers sign me up!

        Obama ran opposing mandates.  Remember that.

        Every one of these problems that come up in crafting a bill prove beyond any doubt that Single Payer is the only workable answer and anything less is likely going to do more harm than good.

      •  Oh and, by the way, (3+ / 0-)

        People also think people in my situation can "just go to the emergency room" and the government picks up the tab which means the taxpayers pick up the tab.

        Bullfuckingshit!  So long as I have an asset they can take, the hospital and its collection agencies would work to take it.  So that ridiculously high bill for the most fiscally inefficient of care?  That's on me.  At least until they get my house.  And they ain't gettin' my house.

        As a person without any income, I am paying my own way, thank you very much.  I don't need to be paying for you as well.

  •  You're conflating.... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Geekesque, not2plato

    Two related but distinct issues. On the one hand, we have the "public option" debate. In other words, should the Exchange contain this alternative to the existing insurance market.

    Then comes the second issue: universal coverage.

    There can not be universal coverage without a "madate" that everyone be covered.

    The rub, and where your problem stems from, is your unwillingness to have universal coverage if/when the only coverage available comes from the existing cast of characters with their for-profit format.

    Now, this reaction could be somewhat mitigated  if the kinds of excesses and abuses that make it a "crappy policy" were eliminated. There are firm steps to do that in every Bill.

    But the for-profit will continue to exist. As will, though, the fact that we can't even come close to insuring the current uninsured if these latter are allowed to opt out....

    •  how old are you? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tmo, wsexson, Prognosticator

      But the for-profit will continue to exist.

      this is an invention that has happened in th health care in my life time. you are caving to the pigs at the trough if you assume it must always be that way.

      Anyone who has the power to make you believe absurdities has the power to make you commit injustices--François-Marie Arouet

      by CA Berkeley WV on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:21:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I don't care if the for-profit continues. (8+ / 0-)

      But profit comes from people making the choice to purchase your product.

      The proceeds of a mandate are not profits. That's a tax.

    •  You are right (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      chrississippi, tmo, zett

      Germany has a universal mandate.  As does France.  

      Neither has universal single payer, like Canada.  Neither has a national health system, like Britain.  

      Instead, both are public option plans.  

      In Germany, the bulk of the population are on basic plans that are a mix of private for profit, non-profit, or public plans.  France has a similar system, with a larger public option.  

      But both have universal mandates.  

      As to your point, that we are dissatisfied with being forced to choose between the existing cast of characters, and your claim that existing efforts aim to control their abusive and wasteful practices... to these I say, so what?

      Numerous issues remain.  And there is a fundamental problem with this arrangement.  

      The issues include the fact that insurance reform may or may not be sufficient to make the industry's products worth having.  Currently, they sell bad promises.  If reform turns all of these into good promises, that will be one thing.  And a good one.  but it will not be enough to justify a universal mandate without a public option.  

      To justify that requires justifying a law that forces the public to deal with a particular sort of private entity.  You mention auto insurance.  Very wise.  But that one is more easily justified -- we are talking about the value of vehicles and passengers, for the most part, and, most importantly, about LIABILITY.  

      Requiring us to insure our liability before we exercise the PRIVILEGE of driving a vehicle on public roads is easy to justify.  It is an effective means of protecting the commons.  

      In the case of forcing persons to buy health care insurance from private entities, it is difficult to make the liability argument because there is no general notion of liability that makes persons or societies liable for such things as childhood cancers, bones broken by slipping on ice, and Parkinson's disease.  

      So, since there is no notion of liability to employ, there is no way to justify this kind of law as a means of protecting the commons.  

      Instead of rational grounds, the law probably relies on nostalgia and convenience and tradition.  It is mere precedent, rather than rational problem solving, which leads to the decision to require a law that forces all of us into a market, and forces us to spend in a market, that enriches the few, impoverishes the many, and delivers next to no value.  

      Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might. Ecclesiastes 9:10

      by not2plato on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:37:04 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  and in germany, since medical education is also (0+ / 0-)

        public and spread across don't the doctors work on salary, similar to mayo and cleveland clinic except without the crushing debt?

        Anyone who has the power to make you believe absurdities has the power to make you commit injustices--François-Marie Arouet

        by CA Berkeley WV on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:00:56 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Damn Straight! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    slatsg, iran 4 president

    I am a big supporter of health-care reform. Donating money. Talking to my friends.

    My friends don't believe it when I tell them that they will be forced to buy crappy health insurance. Buy they will be very angry when it happens. It doesn't make sense. Its going to drive some of these people into the anti-Democrat camp.

    And I might go with them.

  •  How will costs be kept down and care (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    iran 4 president

    increased without a public option? What is the point of health care reform if we don't cut waste and increase coverage? If no public option, than what? What will have the same outcome as the public option?

  •  It does make sense, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Geekesque

    but only if the insurance companies are so tightly regulated that they might as well be public institutions: The minimal coverage they have to provide, premiums, and so on.

    Iuris praecepta sunt haec: Honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere. - Ulpian, Digestae 1, 3

    by Dauphin on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:18:15 AM PDT

    •  No.....it doesn't make sense. (6+ / 0-)

      Regulations are just something that corporations skirt.

      The public option is the only way to create real competition.  I won't be at all sorry if it drives the insurance companies out of business.  That would be a big bonus.

      •  asdf (0+ / 0-)

        Everyone tries to skirt regulation. And some succeed. That's not the issue - the issue with regulation is how to ensure that breaking it stays within acceptable levels.

        Consider: Criminal law is a regulation, basically. And we wouldn't call for abolishment of criminal law since people still rape and murder, now, would we? Because we know that as long as a phenomenon stays marginal we've achieved our goal.

        But it does depend on the quality of regulation: If it states that the maximum premium for basic coverage is $100/month, and it has to include ------, then there isn't much room for avoiding it, now, does it?

        Iuris praecepta sunt haec: Honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere. - Ulpian, Digestae 1, 3

        by Dauphin on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:25:10 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  If, if, if.....that's music to the insurance (0+ / 0-)

          industry's ears.

          Let's just do it RIGHT.  For the American people, for the taxpayers, for the consumer.

          NOT for the f-ing insurance companies.

          •  That's simply a populist (0+ / 0-)

            slogan. You can say precisely the same thing about hte public option: If it is done right, it will be a boon. If not, it will simply cost a lot of money.

            Iuris praecepta sunt haec: Honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere. - Ulpian, Digestae 1, 3

            by Dauphin on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:46:45 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  I went off the deep end on this, too (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    figbash, iran 4 president

    I was dropped when my self employed group pool was purged over ten years ago.  I did look for a replacement but the premiums were higher than the already criminal ones I was paying along with stratospheric deductibles.  And this was for crap coverage.

    I've been without insurance and I'm just fine with that.

    What I don't understand is how the insurance companies would benefit from insuring everyone which would include high risk and those with pre-existing conditions.  These would be the same people insurance companies drop like rocks or don't allow to buy in the first place.

    Since there is no actual bill in place, it's hard to determine what all the criteria are for private companies to cover individuals, but it appears as if there would be regulation on premiums and deductibles as well as the companys' not being permitted to terminate insurance for anyone.

    Insurance companies spend big bucks and bonuses to get expensive customers removed from their plans.

    I really think this is a Be Careful What You Wish For scenario.

    An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does truth become error because nobody sees it. Mohandas Gandhi

    by msmacgyver on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:18:20 AM PDT

  •  The DLC tears the party asunder...... (4+ / 0-)

    buncha losers.

  •  I've been saying this all along (6+ / 0-)

    Individual mandate with no public option.

    If this piece-of-shit idea comes to fruition, I'm joining the teabaggers.

    I'm also going to seriously consider moving to another country, one that's run by people instead of corrupt oligarchs -- Albania, maybe.

    "I must create a system or be enslaved by another man's." - William Blake

    by Tod Westlake on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:19:00 AM PDT

  •  So, say I make $40k/yr (6+ / 0-)

    with a couple of kids. I'm uninsured. A mandate without a public option would force me to spend some amount per month, let's say $100, for a plan. What is this plan going to cover, when my hypothetical sister's plan costing five times as much covers nothing?

    The only way this would work is if there were strong regulations in place setting the minimum standards of coverage an insurer would have to provide, and then either the $100 plan isn't going to be $100.  The economics just don't work.

    Preaching to the choir, I know.

    Anyhoo, good rant.

    Someone is wrong on the Internet! To the Kosmobile!

    by socratic on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:19:10 AM PDT

    •  Read the Bill (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      taylormattd, Populista

      The "one Bill" that's available, the House Bill, does require that Exchange participants have what you are asking for in respect to regulations and minimum standards. That's part of what the "Health Commission" will, I think, be charged with establishing.

      There will also be a tiered structure, with insurers being able to offer various
      plans beyond the "minimum plan". This is what's done in several European countries.

      •  The problem with that (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RichM, wsexson, SoCaliana

        is that there's (apparently, if we believe the insurers) no way to make the economics work, unless we're all subsidizing the low-income options. I don't have a problem doing that, but I'd rather my money go into a government plan to do that to maximize the negotiating leverage of the pool.

        Someone is wrong on the Internet! To the Kosmobile!

        by socratic on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:24:23 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  And would expanding Medicare be cheaper? /nt (0+ / 0-)
          •  Given that Medicare (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            SoCaliana

            doesn't have to make a profit, doesn't have to pay marketing expenses, and doesn't have to pay an army of people to review and deny claims, it seems likely that expanding Medicare would be cheaper than offering comparable low-margin basic care (low-margin if the insurers actually provided coverage) through the private system.

            I'm not an expert in the field, but my own experience in other countries that have this type of system supports the idea.

            Someone is wrong on the Internet! To the Kosmobile!

            by socratic on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:00:11 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  I was actually considering a diary about this. (4+ / 0-)

    I will not only not pay for mandated coverage, I will make a big stink about it with civil disobedience, including fighting tooth and nail in court, even if it ruins me. Hell, I'd go to jail for this cause, if I must.

  •  Civil Disobedience (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, figbash

    would be fraking huge. No one would go along with that, not even the stupidist wingnut or the most rabid liberal. The only reason to talk about this would be as a scare tactic for our side.

    You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough. -Mae West

    by COwoman on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:19:28 AM PDT

  •  One bit of fallout from this ... (15+ / 0-)

    ...is that it may tend to make us grateful for even the tiniest sliver of a public option. Some of us started out behind single payer, then accepted the idea of the half-a-loaf public option, then the half-slice of a weak public option. Yet here we are, months later, being told we should be happy with crumbs dusted from the table, and then only if we're willing to shackle ourselves before eating them.

    Some people would be better off not reading diaries they comment on, since they already have all the answers.

    by Meteor Blades on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:20:00 AM PDT

  •  If they want to cause a revolution, this is one (4+ / 0-)

    way to do it.  When people have to start paying for the opportunity to have junk insurance and guaranteed claim rejections, anger will breaking out all over.

  •  Not Third Way... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SoCaliana, iran 4 president

    ...Turd Way!

    Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

    by JeffW on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:20:39 AM PDT

  •  It's in part 59b of H.R.3200 (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    iran 4 president

    about the 2.9% penalty. We should have been aware of this, no? I don't like it, but we should have been on top of it from the time the H.R.3200 text was released. I've heard about the "Penalty Option" for some time but never realized it was in H.R. 3200 - I feel so dumb ...  and used...

    WAR IS PEACE FREEDOM IS SLAVERY FOX NEWS IS JOURNALISM

    by FakeNews on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:20:45 AM PDT

  •  HC Insurance is not worth the money (5+ / 0-)

    Look at it this way: either you go broke with them paying some of the bills, or you go broke without them.  Either way, you end up in bankruptcy.  So, why go there while paying premiums.  Bet on the kindness of strangers -- and just expect to be in an emergency room uninsured and sure to face bankruptcy if you break a leg.  At least you didn't throw your money down a hole before you went bankrupt.

    Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might. Ecclesiastes 9:10

    by not2plato on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:20:49 AM PDT

  •  Can Fed Gov even impose a mandate? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Kickemout

    I generally take a pretty expansive view of the federal government's powers under the Constitution, but I'm starting to wonder if it would go beyond even the strong commerce clause precedents for the Federal Government to force an individual to purchase a product or service from a private company.  If they can do this, why couldn't Congress just pass a law forcing everyone to buy a new car, in order to alleviate the recession?  

    "[W]e shall see the reign of witches pass over . . . and the people, recovering their true spirit, restore their government to its true principles." Jefferson

    by RenMin on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:20:53 AM PDT

    •  WIthin the commerce clause power. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      taylormattd, Populista

      Regulation scheme for 1/6 of our national economy counts.

      "[R]ather high-minded, if not a bit self-referential"--The Washington Post.

      by Geekesque on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:25:29 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Depends on how you interpret it. (0+ / 0-)

        A strict reading would say that only commerce that is truly inter-state, i.e., a buyer in state A and a seller in state B, can be regulated by the Feds.

        There's a Supreme Court decision that basically says that anything that might conceivably affect interstate commerce can be Federally regulated, but that decision is one of the top legal targets for the Right.

        The interpretation of the Commerce Clause will be one of the biggest legal fights of our time. Most of the "Sate Sovereignty" laws that have been passed in the last year are directly aimed at triggering litigation that will put the Commerce Clause before SCOTUS... and there's a lot of support for restricting its scope.

        I'd also note that there is room for a liberal "State's Rights" position on this... "liberal" does not equal "anti-federalist" in all cases.

        --Shannon

        "It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees." -- Emiliano Zapata Salazar
        "Dissent is patriotic. Blind obedience is treason." --me

        by Leftie Gunner on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:26:58 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Not even close w/r/t HCR, however. eom (0+ / 0-)

          "[R]ather high-minded, if not a bit self-referential"--The Washington Post.

          by Geekesque on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:38:04 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  How not so? (0+ / 0-)

            Like it or not, health care is a commercial enterprise.

            Therefore, the ability of the Federal government to regulate it depends critically on the scope of interpretation given to the Commerce Clause.

            I don't see how this is not relevant.

            --Shannon

            "It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees." -- Emiliano Zapata Salazar
            "Dissent is patriotic. Blind obedience is treason." --me

            by Leftie Gunner on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:47:13 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  How on earth does health care not affect (0+ / 0-)

              interstate commerce?

              There's a stronger argument for striking down every single federal anti-discrimination law than there is to rule that health care reform doesn't sufficiently implicate interstate commerce.

              "[R]ather high-minded, if not a bit self-referential"--The Washington Post.

              by Geekesque on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:32:02 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  But how widely you interpret (0+ / 0-)

                the Commerce Clause will define the limits of Federal authority in this area.

                If I, my provider, and my insurance company are all in the same state, does that transaction still fall under the Commerce Clause?

                That's why interpretation matters.

                --Shannon

                "It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees." -- Emiliano Zapata Salazar
                "Dissent is patriotic. Blind obedience is treason." --me

                by Leftie Gunner on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:58:14 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Doesn't matter. Your hospital will buy drugs and (0+ / 0-)

                  medical devices and use vendors from out of state.  

                  "[R]ather high-minded, if not a bit self-referential"--The Washington Post.

                  by Geekesque on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:41:16 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  True, but... (0+ / 0-)

                    A strict reading will lead to the conclusion that the hospital's relationship with it's suppliers is subject to Federal regulation, as it's clearly inter-state, but your relationship with the hospital (and how it's paid for) is not, as you are both within the same state.

                    I think you're either assuming the correctness of the existing interpretation of the Commerce Clause (which, as I said, is one of the primary focuses of the intellectual Right, and is subject to judicial change), or you're not seeing the implications.

                    --Shannon

                    "It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees." -- Emiliano Zapata Salazar
                    "Dissent is patriotic. Blind obedience is treason." --me

                    by Leftie Gunner on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:57:17 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

    •  They've done it before (0+ / 0-)

      Think car insurance. It's illegal to drive without it and it must be purchased from a private company. It's not necessarily a federal law, but the feds threatened to remove federal funding from states if they didn't pass the law.

      It would be the same thing in this instance. Just another windfall for the corrupt, greedy, immoral insurance industry.

      •  Car Insurance... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tmo

        Is a state issue, since the state issues the license.  But since health insurance is a national issue, I think this would pass a constitutionality test.

        [Journalism] is media agnostic. - Kos

        by RichM on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:31:38 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I agree (0+ / 0-)

          But if need be, they could bypass that by issuing ultimatums to the states. I understand what you're saying of course. I'm just saying that there are ways to force us to buy the health insurance without doing it on a straight-forward federal level and, sadly, without offering us the public option.

          I'm wholeheartedly against the mandate for auto-insurance  as I would be for health insurance-- unless there's a public option. I think the insurance industry as a whole is out-of-control and needs to be reined in. There are too many normally law-abiding citizens who are criminals as they break the law every day because they can't afford to insure their cars. But the federal government said to the states "You have to do this" and it was done-- to the benefit of the auto insurance industry. Not apples to apples, of course, but an illustration of what  more can go wrong with these mandates. I guess I'm saying I'm worried that we're going to be forced to pay these clowns more money with very little benefit to us and there's a history of that happening.

          I said some place else that I'm becoming disillusioned and need talked down. :) I think that applies here too.

          •  Actually, in many (if not all) states (0+ / 0-)

            there is a "public option" for auto insurance -- there's a state pool for motorists who can't otherwise get insurance.

            "[W]e shall see the reign of witches pass over . . . and the people, recovering their true spirit, restore their government to its true principles." Jefferson

            by RenMin on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:13:32 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Really? (0+ / 0-)

              I live in Ohio and I've never heard of this. Of course, that doesn't surprise me. I've only just learned that some states have programs that help the 'uninsurable' with their medical needs. None of that here either.

        •  We don't need insurance. We need health CARE (0+ / 0-)

          for pity's sake.

          More insurance is not a solution.

          It's a bigger problem:

             Percentage change since 2002 in average premiums paid to large US health-insurance companies: +87%

             Percentage change in the profits of the top ten insurance companies: +428%

             Chances that an American bankrupted by medical bills has health insurance: 7 in 10

          —Harper’s Index, September 2009

          from:
          http://www.commondreams.org/...

          This health care system is a moral atrocity. Dr. Ralphdog

          by AllisonInSeattle on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 02:15:55 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Not that easy (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wsexson

        Setting aside the state versus federal distinction, the government does not require anyone to purchase auto insurance.  It merely makes auto insurance a condition of driving.  It is well established that there is no "right to drive" and the government has the power to prevent individuals from driving on public roads for any number of reasons, including but not limited to lack of insurance.

        That's different from saying that everyone, no matter what, has to purchase health insurance.

        "[W]e shall see the reign of witches pass over . . . and the people, recovering their true spirit, restore their government to its true principles." Jefferson

        by RenMin on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:11:14 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  If You Don't Want to Buy Insurance (0+ / 0-)

          You pay the tax (which would be based on a percentage of gross income).  That's only fair, because as the system currently works, the cost of providing healthcare to the uninsured (i.e. through emergency rooms) gets passed on in the form of higher premiums paid by the insured.

          •  Fairness is not a Constitutional concept. (0+ / 0-)

            What matters, in terms of this discussion, is not what is fair, but what the Constitution allows (and prohibits... there's quite a few "thou shalt not"s in there) the Federal government from doing.

            --Shannon

            "It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees." -- Emiliano Zapata Salazar
            "Dissent is patriotic. Blind obedience is treason." --me

            by Leftie Gunner on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:59:41 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  No Constitutional Prohibition On This (0+ / 0-)

              The healthcare industry represents 1/6 of the economy.  If Congress doesn't have plenary power to regulate that under the Commerce clause, I'm at a loss to understand what Congress can regulate.  Efficient provision of healthcare services requires universal coverage, which can only be accomplished with single payer or mandates.  Since we're not doing single payer, you have to have mandates.  If someone doesn't have coverage, then they have to pay a tax, which defrays the cost that is imposed on everyone else who does have insurance.  There is no constitutional problem here.  This is just insurance industry and/or right-wing propaganda trying to throw up road blocks to reform.

              •  No, it's not propaganda. (0+ / 0-)

                There is a legitimate Constitutional question here.

                Article I, Section 8, Paragraph 3 (powers of Congress):

                To regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states, and with the Indian tribes

                It is not at all clear that this allows Congress to regulate transactions that occur strictly within the boundaries of a State, even if that transaction could have crossed State borders.

                This is a fundamental question of Constitutional interpretation, and it's by no means clear-cut.

                --Shannon

                "It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees." -- Emiliano Zapata Salazar
                "Dissent is patriotic. Blind obedience is treason." --me

                by Leftie Gunner on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 01:48:02 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  It Has Been Clear-Cut Since 1824 (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  RenMin

                  In Gibbons v. Ogden Chief Justice Marshall made it clear that Congress has power to regulate intrastate activities that necessarily have interstate effects.  On this basis, the Supreme Court has consistently upheld expansive use of the Commerce Clause, particularly since the shift of the Court in 1936.  The Supreme Court upheld the 1964 Civil Rights laws banning discrimination in housing, employment, public accomodation, etc., under the Commerce Clause.  The two recent 10th Amendment cases by the Supreme Court have been in situations where Congress attempted to enact criminal legislation without a specific interstate nexus, an area traditionally left to state regulation.  None of these issues arise here.

    •  Minimum Wages (0+ / 0-)

      Congress forces employers to pay a minimum wage to their employees, regardless of what they think they are worth.  In other words, Congress is forcing private parties to make certain payments to other private parties.  Clearly constitutional, and clearly good policy, IMO.

  •  it's worse than that: don't forget, (6+ / 0-)

    that "crappy product" that is "too expensive" for you will become even crappier and even more expensive at the retail level if you are both forced to buy it AND the government gives you a subsidy to do so. there are incentives at work now that are having some effect- there are not enough people who can afford the premiums, so that is having a minor effect holding premiums down. many doctors offices are half-empty and are now offering patients deals on copayments. we're even seeing some fee-for-service medicine return; in ethnic ghettos, doctors are forced to treat patients for what are in fact very reasonable cash payments. all of this disappears under the heinous "compromise" being bandied about.

  •  It is a well-worn Republican trick to (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mrblifil

    legislate the impossible.  It insures failure and the opportunity to try and try again next term.  

    Promising to fight for their constituents relentlessly has proved the key to longevity.  It doesn't occur to most Americans that someone would prefer failure to success.  But, if longevity is the issue, that's how it works.

    Death and success have one thing in common--finality.

    I think when Obama signaled he'd be willing to be a one-term President, he was telling Congress that electoral concerns are not going to merit his concern--neither his nor theirs.

    We are either going to do this in his first two years or in the second, with a new team of progressives.

    How do you tell a predator from a protector? The predator will eat you sooner rather than later.

    by hannah on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:22:30 AM PDT

    •  Well... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      costello7

      I think when Obama signaled he'd be willing to be a one-term President, he was telling Congress that electoral concerns are not going to merit his concern--neither his nor theirs.

      A) I don't think the WH ever confirmed this.
      B) The WH sure isn't acting like they don't care about a second term.

      [Journalism] is media agnostic. - Kos

      by RichM on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:30:35 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  ding ding ding.... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    slatsg

    This is Obama's doing.  He needs to veto a bill that has mandates but no public option.  Otherwise, he will forever be remembered as the guy who gave the Insurance companies a handout.  And please don't tell me that he will subsidize the poor folks who cannot afor to pay for mandated coverage:  that is simply taking taxpayer money and giving it to the insurance companies.

    Three things have to be non-negotiable:

    1. No public option? no mandated insurance
    1. Insurance company profits must be regulated (like utilities used to be)
    1. Insurance companies are not allowed to deny care for anyone based on anything.

    Anything else is a travesty visited upon the american people by the former community organizer.

  •  Isn't this just brinksmanship (0+ / 0-)

    from the Finance Committee who are bridling at Obama telling them what to do? There's no way the Senate would pass a bill that would raise health expenses on the middle class. That would be political suicide. Republicans and "moderates" may dream of Obama signing such a bill into law, as the basis for some kind of return to glory, but they can't possibly believe such a scheme would work.

    It's just late August maneuvering, the kind of shit we can thank Harry Reid for for refusing to bring the issue to a vote prior to recess.

    •  Um... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      raboof, ferg, wsexson

      They don't give a shit about the middle class.  At least Rahm doesn't.  What they see is a crass political opportunity: Insurance dollars into their election coffers for decades to come.  If they really gave a shit about the middle class, they wouldn't even entertain this idea.

      [Journalism] is media agnostic. - Kos

      by RichM on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:28:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  David, you're understating i! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RichM, AllisonInSeattle

    Not only is this bad, it's perpetuating the worst bad of the bad.

    And yes, I am a wonk.  (gotta get back to my spreadsheet work)

  •  Insurance mandate. (8+ / 0-)
    Lol.  That would be the single worst solution EVER specifically for the reasons you are discussing. This bill is supposed to reform health care...not find ways to funnel tax dollars to private industry.  Why not just privitaize social security while they are at it.

    The only POSSIBLE way for mandates insurance to work is if the gov't has the balls to FORCE health insurance companies to become non-profit.  That is literally the only way, and we all know the gov't doesn't have the guts to do any such thing.   So all we are left with is crappy reform that won't work because the flaw in the whole system is the need to profit.  Even if you mandate people to buy insurance, health insurers are still mandatated to increase profits every quarter.  This means they either have to cut people from roles, deny care, or raises premiums indefinitely.  NONE of these things are compatible with sustainable reform and that is why NONE of them will work.

    Without a public option, or a gov't willing to shut down for-profit health insurance, there is no reform.  Just another excuse to screw over the public by giving their hard earned money to corporations and the super-rich.

    •  Exactly (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      chrississippi, JuliaAnn

      Once you open the door to profits on people's health, it's ludicrous to try and regulate the profit-makers by regulating risk pools, etc.  The businesses will rightly claim that they exist to maximize profits and benefit their shareholders.  Why should they care about the health of the people they're insuring?

      The worst delusion being sold to the American people is that healthcare insurers are a kind of benevolent doctor substitute.  But then, Americans are well-conditioned to believe corporations.  That's what the billion-dollar ad campaigns are for.

      It is scarcely possible to conceive of the laws of motion if one looks at them from a tennis ball's point of view. (Brecht)

      by dotalbon on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:38:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  It is theoretically possible (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, mrblifil, Stroszek, dotalbon, Jyrinx

    to use rate caps and coverage regulation to make mandates acceptable without a public option. But Congress doesn't have the stomach for that kind of regulation.

    Ok, so I read the polls.

    by andgarden on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:24:23 AM PDT

  •  Medicare -mandatory at 65 (6+ / 0-)

    I had never given it a thought. I guess Medicare must be a mandatory sign-up. The paycheck deduction was mandatory, along with FICA [Social Security] during my work years. At 65 they sent the papers - by the time I had read them I was already signed up. They deducted $98 from my SS check. Then they signed me up for Medicare Rx. Then wrote to announce I qualified for help paying the deductions for both of these plans. I'm Ok with all of that.

    My only wish for Medicare is that everyone could signup for it, mandatory or not. You young workers are already paying for it in deductions. Where do Blue Dogs get off challenging with, "Who is going to pay for it?" You already pay for it every month, and your taxes help pay for my $98 deduction. Thank you very much.

    Lou Dobbs is asking someone to assassinate Howard Dean with a stake to the heart. How can this be legal?

    by mrobinson on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:24:27 AM PDT

  •  I swear a lot also (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Rich in PA, Populista

    but i don't get my posts on the front page of a well known blog site.

    http://politicz.wordpress.com/

    by GlowNZ on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:25:09 AM PDT

  •  I'll go further: I will not support any mandate. (8+ / 0-)

    Period.

    Absolutely no mandate to buy coverage. The only "mandates" I care to see associated with this "debate" are:

    1. a mandate for the insurance companies to honor the spirit (and in many cases the letter) of their contracts
    1. a mandate that the government provide health care for people who cannot afford coverage on their own at discounted rates (or without charge)
    1. a mandate that allows the government run "public option" insurance plan to negotiate fiercely for prices
    1. a mandate that requires the government run "public option" to be absolutely, 100% non-profit.

    If all these "mandates" exist, then a "mandate" to force people to pay private murder-by-spreadsheet ghouls at private insurances companies is not only moot, but laughable.

  •  diversionary attack (5+ / 0-)

    Nothing is as it seems in DC.  Health care reform is super important--but--the wars and the economy are rarely discussed anymore.  Why aren't we saving $10 billion a month by being out of Iraq?  Why are we banging our heads against the wall to fight in Afghanistan?  Why are we thinking of rehiring BB after he was a Greenspan clone and claimed there was no problem in early 2008?  Why are we allowing Goldman/Sachs to rape and control us?

    Health care is giving cover to these bigger problems.  We're going bankrupt and won't be able to afford medical care if we don't stop wasting away in Iraqastan or continue to allow GS free reign.  Wanna bet GS is making a bundle bidding up the price of oil again?

  •  Bruce Webb at the Angry Bear suggests... (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bink, tmo, Femlaw, Rich in PA, dotalbon

    ...we look again:

    In the bluntest terms Sec 116 [of HR 3200, ed.] imposes profit controls on the insurance companies and would do so even in the absence of the Public Option. Its existence explains why Republican leadership are signaling, nay shouting, that they will not accept Health Care reform period even if reformers surrendered the Public Option, even if they abandoned the very weak beer that is Co-Ops. The Left by and large is convinced that giving up the PO simply hands the keys to the castle over to the insurance companies with the rest of us tied up in chains at their mercy, that they can just merrily raise rates at their whim. Well, no -- and that control is hidden in plain view in the first two sentences of the Section.

    More follows, and there's a link to an earlier piece on the same theme...

    "The country we carry in our hearts is waiting." Bruce Springsteen

    by Davis X Machina on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:28:20 AM PDT

    •  There is NO enforcement mechanism (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tmo, jerseyite

      what? a $1,000 fine?

      hahahahahahahhahhahahahaha

      The day the government makes me pay for some shoddy shit is the day I stop paying anything to the government.

      "Much law, but little justice": Proverb

      by Dave925 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:50:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not exactly, no. Webb is misreading the bill... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tmo, wsexson, Prognosticator

      Basically Webb is violating the cardinal rule of analytical reporting: Follow the Money.  

      He's treating this particular clause as a limit on insurance company profits, when in fact it's designed to be a concession to PhRMA and the AMA.  What Section 116 does is describe a regulatory environment where an easy way for insurance providers to increase their own profits is to increase what they pay out to healthcare providers.

      It does not say that the insurance companies "can't just merrily raise rates at their whim."  All it says is that they can't exceed the loss ratio set by the insurance czar (meaning they can raise rates, but cannot retain the marginal excess in the form of profit).  This couples the net profit of the insurance companies to the amount that they pay out.  Problems with this approach include (among others):

      1. That the insurance commissioner can effectively "just merrily raise rates" by changing the loss ratio.  And if you don't expect regulatory capture to lead to rates that maximize vendor profits rather than consumer value, then perhaps you would be interested in this slightly-used Securities and Exchange Commission that I would be willing to let you have, cheap.  Low low mileage, only driven on Sundays, by a little old Quaker lady with no upper arm strength.
      1. That fixing loss ratios gives each individual QHBP an incentive to maintain or increase the cost of the health care of its own customers, whether or not the extra cost actually leads to better health outcomes.  If you think that having health care represent 16% of GDP is A Bad Thing, then telling the insurance companies that they can make more money by making health care as expensive as possible is A Very Bad Thing.  Again, if you're okay with health care costs remaining high or continuing to rise, then this is great.

      So this is a good deal if you're a healthcare provider, and a lot better than the alternatives if you're an insurance provider.  It's just not so hot if you're a healthcare consumer.

  •  I think this would finally (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dave925, dotalbon

    force me to move to Canada.

  •  I'm with you. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AllisonInSeattle, dotalbon

    It would be the government giving big corporations the right to tax us. That is unacceptable.

    Democrats are the sleeping giant.

    by GMFORD on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:28:29 AM PDT

  •  Huge boon for private insurers, eh? (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, JuliaAnn, Dave925, wsexson, KozmoD, dotalbon

    Can't pay for it? No problem. The tax payers will be happy to continue shoveling their hard-earned cash into industry profits. Look, if this passes this way...mandates with no PO?...I'm calling it a heist...just like TARP was.

    "This kind of mania can't be co-opted: it can only be overruled." - Johann Hari

    by nehark on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:28:52 AM PDT

  •  This is nothing new (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, FreeStateDem

    Welcome to reality. Some of us have smelled this rat for a long time (Matt Taibi has written on it)....Why do you think the insurance companies were going along with Obama at the outset?

    They wanted the mandate. And were confident that they could kill any effective competition (public option) behind the scences. And they loved the idea of government subsidies.

    Wendell Potter has said it all along too.

    We can not afford, morally or economically, universal coverage without having some way of leveraging premium increases.

    Just as we can not let a public option ,if adopted, be just a "dumping ground" for the poor and the sick.

    We means you healthy young people will not be able to opt out of having insurance either.

    But the bottom line is that we can not spread coverage if it is just going to just get more people and more profits into the private sector.

  •  The Turd Way is more like it. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, Dave925, Patricia Bruner
  •  i'll do you one better.... (6+ / 0-)

    i've already picked out my apartment on Toronto and spoken with immigration and the film office about moving my production company there. Just gt back yesterday. Worse, while there my 81 year old dad calls to tell me his wife (my step mom) wh is no;y 62 and not on medicare but on Boeing's heath plan has been admitted to the hospital on the advice of her physician to fix a problem taht has been deteriorating for over a year but has no known cause. The insurance company denied the treatment saying it wasnt proven. The doctor is appealing but my dad could be stuck with 10s of thousands in health care costs and could end up mortgaging his home (and only asset) to pay for it (unless i'm able to pay it myself, which i may be able to with the new contract coming up).

    Still, This is bullshit.  It only solidified my personal PLAN B and i'm angry as hell about the ignorance and foolishness in this country. I;m sad about it, embarrassed about it, angry, hurt. deeply hurt and feeling betrayed. I thought this was a democracy.

    So, i say to the DLC-types, not only fuck no i'm not paying for junk shit, but fuck you altogther.  I'll generate income and hire teh required number of folks in Canada and take as many americans who can relocate to go with me. fuck it and fuck america if they want to fuck around with bullshit like this. fuck it. I deserve to live in a civilized democracy (one i THOUGHT i was lucky enough to be born into - and we shall yet see, won't we?). Teabagger indeed...only 'll follow the true form of the founders and just leave a system i think is to corrupt to fix. Fortunately i wont need to create my own new system in a 'new world' - there are actually civilized countries that will still be around in 50 years.

    /end of rant

    sorry i needed to get that off my chest. mostly i'm feeling deeply betrayed and hurt by my government and my fellow countrymen. Sometimes it comes out as anger. In the end i will fight for real reform. If it fails, i'm out.

  •  I would rather... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dave925, dotalbon

    ...not have a mandate and have a public option, then have a mandate with no public option.

    Removing the public option is cutting out your heart for your "pound of flesh".  Yah it's probably a pound in weight, but you can't exactly live without it.

    You are entitled to express your opinion. But you are NOT entitled to agreement.

    by DawnG on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:31:24 AM PDT

  •  In theory it's possible (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, bwren, Dave925, zett, Audri, Skeptical Bastard

    This would be similar to some of the European systems.
    Mandated, subsidized highly regulated private insurance can work. It's not even a bad system. Much better than we have now.

    The problem is two-fold. One is that many of us have had (or know of) such bad experiences with insurance companies that we're opposed to anything that relies on them. More practically, the real issue is with that "highly regulated." With the insurance companies lobbying the regulation writers so heavily and the anti-regulation fever that's common in American politics, we simply can't trust that the regulation will be sufficient.

    The Empire never ended.

    by thejeff on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:34:57 AM PDT

    •  But the government covers catastrophic (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Audri

      illnesses..

      I looked at the Dutch model, about which I diaried here.

      That is all private coverage, but, as you say, highly regulated.  The Dutch system has a feature called "risk equalization" though that limits risk for insurers if any one of them has a disproportionate number of chronically ill patients and covers some of the costs of catastrophic illnesses.

      I could live with such a system..

      "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others." - G. Marx

      by Skeptical Bastard on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:46:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I have lived with such a system (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tmo, Audri

        The Dutch pharmacists used to look at me funny when I'd get out my wallet to pay for prescriptions. It took me a year before I stopped doing that. I was just so used to it.

        Glenn Beck seems the very essence of a one-clown pie fight. His brain wears gigantic puffy shoes and comes with a bicycle horn. -- Hunter

        by Page van der Linden on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:49:08 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  It works. (0+ / 0-)

        But it needs strict government regulation, and you also need to take in to account the situation that it came from.

        The Dutch system came out of a system that already worked well: it did not have high premiums, and coverage was good. Also, healthcare costs weren't high. It was based on a system that had a long history, a mix of private insurers and co-ops (ironically, the latter were made mandatory by the Nazis).

        It wasn't a big step to convert this to private insurance only with strict regulations.

        However, in the US, it would be much harder to switch to that system. Premiums are sky-high. The costs in general are very high. Health care insurance companies have much more power.

        The only way for a switchover to that system to work would probably mean having a price control system in place that actually fixes the upper limit in insurance premiums. But that probably has less of a chance to pass than the public option.

        •  Or.. (0+ / 0-)

          I have argued for some time now, that if the fed government provided catastrophic health coverage, then insurance to cover the gap would be damned cheap.  Especially if all health insurance were available for a national market.  The gap insurance would, of course, have to have mandated minimum services.

          I would love to present this to Repubs as a free market solution and see if they could find flaws in it!

          "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others." - G. Marx

          by Skeptical Bastard on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:02:29 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Third way = Clinton-speak for "corporate welfare" (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, SneakySnu, Dave925, sweeper

    it was somewhat more reasonably then for two reasons (both still inadequate):

    1. Clinton had an insane republican-controlled congress. There were only so many times he felt he could break out his veto pen. When the third way included loosening up the banking rules to set up the embezzlement scheme we're paying for now, he should have woken up. But he didn't. Water Under Bridge.
    1. Even as recently as 1992, when Clinton was elected as the third way candidate, corporations had yet to implement true murder by spreadsheet. Yes, they were already probably planning it, but it took some doing to actually make it happen. Remember at that time, television advertising for prescription drugs was still illegal.

    Joe Lieberman is a Chode.

    by dnamj on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:35:31 AM PDT

  •  On the Government Making You Buy Stupid Things (6+ / 0-)
    1. Let'say you pay 25% of your earnings in federal taxes.
    1. They spend about a quarter of that on military expenditures.
    1. A significant chunk of that goes to wage war on underdeveloped hell-holes, which are then made even worse by our actions.
    1. A fair piece of that war money goes to evil mercenaries like Blackwater, who murder innocents in our name, or KBR, who electrocutes our soldiers in showers and then gets even more no-bid contracts.
    1. At least when you are forced to give your money to corrupt health insurers, they use it to buy luxury yachts or to roll on the craps table in Monte Carlo.

    The moral arc of the universe is long, but it bends towards justice. - Martin Luther King, Jr.

    by easong on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:35:50 AM PDT

  •  word! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AllisonInSeattle

    simplicity is the most difficult of all things

    by RichardWoodcockII on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:36:49 AM PDT

  •  i agree but right below (0+ / 0-)

    Support President Obama so that his coattails can carry progressives into Congress in 2010. Build on all success.

    by Plain Speaking on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:36:56 AM PDT

  •  Kagro channels Hunter (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wsexson

    I like it!

    BHO and BHO: Blue Hussein Orb and that one

    by Blue Orb on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:37:17 AM PDT

  •  But these are new and improved private plans! (0+ / 0-)

    But seriously.. supposedly all private plans now are not necessarily "crappy" plans because they have government minimums on services and payments and maximums on co-pays and out of pockets.

    Additionally, a diary I read the other day puts the costs (premiums) of a public plan at only about 10% less than the private ones..

    But still.. 10% is a lot!

    "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others." - G. Marx

    by Skeptical Bastard on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:37:49 AM PDT

  •  Is this seriously a possibility? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dave925, dotalbon

    No public option, but a requirement that everyone buy insurance? How the heck is that supposed to work? And yes, this would be a big boost to Republicans. Even as a barely-political-aware type, I can see that... the thought of it swings me back from my newly minted Dem-leanings towards Ind.

    And no, it's not the same as the required auto liability insurance.  

    1.  Required liability insurance doesn't pay for damage to my car, or for care for my injuries. It isn't about protecting ME at all... but it guarantees that if I damage someone else's property or injure them with vehicle, I'll have some way of paying at least partial damages.  
    1.  I always have an option not to drive. (I don't, actually - vision issues. My husband does. It is a hardship, but our insurance IS cheaper because of that. And no, we don't have public transportation here.) Choosing not to drive in an urban OR rural area requires adaptations, but it's possible.  The Amish manage,  you know.
    •  You also have access to a robust (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tmo, Dave925, Brooke In Seattle, SpamNunn

      competitive auto insurance pool wherever you live.  Most American markets have only one or two healthcare companies offering coverage.  That's more akin to the government-allowed monopoly for cable companies.  

      It is scarcely possible to conceive of the laws of motion if one looks at them from a tennis ball's point of view. (Brecht)

      by dotalbon on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:41:07 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Time to press the reset button. (n/t) (5+ / 0-)
  •  Righteous rant - and 100% accurate (7+ / 0-)

    No mandates without a public option.  Period.

    •  I came to the same conclusion (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tmo

      a long time ago.  Civil disobedience in the face of collective stupidity.  Although I could afford health insurance, I became "self-insured" when Blue Cross raised my rates twice in one month.  Once because I was about to have a birthday, and once for reasons known only to the corporate I AM, or the keepers of the Matrix, or whoever.   I'd never used the policy; in fact I hadn't even seen a doctor or bought a prescription in seven years.  Send me to jail.  I'm not buying health insurance from any company who, necessarily, puts profits above all else.    

  •  They think selling a punlic option is hard? (5+ / 0-)
    Try selling massive premium increases on the middle class -- and taxing people's health care benefits. The Democrats would lose 100 seats in the house.
  •  The key difference... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, Dave925, zett, dotalbon
    Paying the government against my will I can understand. It's the government, and it takes things. I might not like it, but I get it. Now, "libertarians" will no doubt scoff haughtily at that, but look, we differ on how much intrusion we'll tolerate.

    The key difference is that, when it comes to the government, you still have some input and influence on what the public option looks like: You have a vote. You have the capability to take greater political action.

    When it comes to a private insurance company, OTOH, the only influence you have is your decision to spend money or not to spend money on their product. If the government mandates that you give the private insurance companies your money, however, you have NO influence.

    Giving the government the ability to control your personal budget is madness. It's totalitarianism of the worst kind.

    And I would like to think it would be ruled unconstitutional. But since the courts just recently got done concluding that the government has the right to take away your personal property in order to allow private companies to build retail outlets, I don't have much confidence in that. (I mean, it's clearly unconstitutional. I just don't trust the courts to actually do their job.)

    •  what if you are covered by your partner's (0+ / 0-)

      insurance? Does that mean you are covered and don't have to get any other insurance - or does it mean there will no longer be any family policies?

      This is something I hadn't thought about.

      If I like my current insurance from my employer that covers me and my family, will the other members of my family have to get separate insurance or can they stay on my employer's plan?

  •  why not drop the individual mandate? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dotalbon

    Keeping the public option in play so that prices go down across the board, but dropping the requirement for individuals to buy insurance seems ideal to me.

    I'm uninsured. Like David, I don't want to be forced to buy some crappy insurance that right now I'm choosing not to buy. But, if there was a better, cheaper option, I would love to buy it. Getting rid of the individual mandate would help calm rhetoric about a government take-over and government forcing people to do something.

  •  What if we get a fig leaf public option? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    figbash, wsexson, Prognosticator, dotalbon

    That is an outcome I fear.  A public option so hobbled that it is no better than private insurance.  Prices still spiral through the roof and we are forced to buy horrible policies.  People still go bankrupt because they cannot pay their medical bills and the insurance companies get even more obscene profits.

    •  That's what I'm afraid will be in the bill (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      figbash, cetylovx, Prognosticator

      because it's the only bill insurance companies will allow out of Congress.    

      If that happens, I hope Obama has the stones to veto it, and use the veto message as an opportunity to re-assert himself on this issue.  

      It is scarcely possible to conceive of the laws of motion if one looks at them from a tennis ball's point of view. (Brecht)

      by dotalbon on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:43:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Amen, David, Amen (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dotalbon

    The fuckers will have to come get me too. If they do, I will refer them to my lawyer - name's Mossberg.

  •  I have no 'option' (5+ / 0-)

    but not buying. I'm a sole proprietor business to business owner with no insurance and if I am forced to pay I will not have enough to live on let alone stay in business. Insult to injury to call the health care. Nothing healthy about being so poor you can't afford to eat let alone going to the doctor. The government won't help me as I'm not totally poor just so called middle class. What a time economically to pull this crap on struggling people and call it 'reform' and worse health care. Fuck em, I won't be alone not paying the vig as you can't get blood out of a turnip. What they deem affordable is as insane as Marie Antoinette's famous and callous reply to those who could not afford bread.    

    "And if my thought-dreams could be seen They'd probably put my head in a guillotine" Bob Dylan

    by shaharazade on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:41:48 AM PDT

    •  if your income is that low, you will (0+ / 0-)

      receive a subsidy, won't you?

      Sliding scale for people with incomes to 400% of poverty - $88,000 /year net income for a family of 4 - I think it is.

      •  I'm a family of two (0+ / 0-)

        and am probably over the line, taxes on small businesses cuts my gross income by 30%, but our net while over this line is not easy to live on, in the real world. My income fluctuates yearly and I pay quarterlies, estimated income, then there is cash flow. This last year was a bad one. Even in a good year it's not easy to live at a decent level on what they calculate as middle class, whats left after they tax the holy hell out of us and we pay the mortgage etc. Sounds like I'm doing good on paper but every year it costs more to live and it's harder to increase your income.

        We also are bootstrapping it, and in order to grow our business put money into it. Why should I have to pay what equals a extra mortgage for a product I don't want. This would stop all growth for our business. We live modestly and have no debt other then our mortgage. What kind of thing is it to give me a subsidy, that's an incentive to keep my income low? Even with a subsidy I would end up below what is needed to sustain my life as it is, let alone cope with inflation.

        I have also found that tax rebates and subsidy's are another scam that always end up somehow cutting into usable income. Income that I would need to say actually go to a doctor. I do not trust their subsidy's any more then I trust this mandated 'reform'.                

        "And if my thought-dreams could be seen They'd probably put my head in a guillotine" Bob Dylan

        by shaharazade on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 10:05:08 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Mandate w/o public option = scam (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, wsexson, kaolin, dotalbon

    Insurance company bailout

    At some point we are going to have to admit the Blue Norwegian parrot isn't just resting or pinning for the fjords. It is a dead parrot.

    by lostmypassword on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:43:03 AM PDT

  •  The public option IS ALREADY a compromise (7+ / 0-)

    for single payer. Isn't it?

    (someone may have pointed this out above, I haven't read all 300+ comments)

    Why should we compromise the compromise?

    •  I Think That's The Wrong Way To Look At It (0+ / 0-)

      Obama has set out certain goals for healthcare reform:

      1. Control costs, including insurance premiums;
      1. Get universal (or virtually universal) coverage;
      1. Don't disturb coverage for people who like what they have now.

      Obama took single payer off the table not as a compromise, but because it would be inconsistent with goal no. 3.  Sure it may be possible to have a perfectly great single payer system, but if you instituted it right now, a lot of private insurance companies would disappear and lots of people would be forced to change their coverage.  At the very least it would be disruptive, and almost certainly, it would make a lot of people dissatisfied with their coverage.

      If you look around the world, lots of countries achieve the first two goals without single payer.  Switzerland and Germany are the examples most often cited, and they don't even have a "public option."  The Netherlands recently went to an all-private system.  All of these countries generally have healthcare systems that are as good or better than some single payer systems, such as Canada.  However, they also have far more extensive regulation of private insurance companies than the US does.  That's why the "public option" makes so much sense, and it is essential to making this work here.  You keep as much of the private system intact as possible, you get to universal coverage through mandates, and you make sure that consumers have meaningful choice in buying insurance by making available a "public option."

      The insurance lobbyists are saying that the public option is just a Trojan horse for single payer, and that it is going to drive all of the private insurers out of business.  Many on the left think that way too.  I think it is just as plausible that healthcare reform could be sufficiently successful at driving down costs that people will actually prefer private insurance, and the public option will become unnecessary and we will follow in the path of the Dutch.  But we're not there now, and we have to have the public option to provide meaningful choice.

  •  don't let bipartisanship be the enemy of the good (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, skywriter, kaolin

    strong public option for everybody up to 400% of poverty level, as a bare minimum. I'm with you 400% Señor Waldman

    All currency is neurotic currency. --Norman O. Brown

    by MikeRayinBerkeley on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:48:21 AM PDT

  •  What Cavuto thinks Obama's moral obligation is... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AllisonInSeattle, kaolin

    Have you all seen this video of Neil Cavuto saying that it is not Obama's moral obligation to make sure Americans have health care, but it is his moral obligation to protect the American dollar?

    This is unbelievable! Here is the clip.

    http://progressnotcongress.org/...

  •  Well, It Works in Switzerland and Germany (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, Chrisfs, Prognosticator, kaolin, Pebbles

    They have universal healthcare with individual mandates operating through private insurance.  I'm not advocating that for the US because those countries have comprehensive insurance regulation that we don't have here - indeed, insurance regulation is largely done here at the state level so individual mandates without a public option would force people to buy insurance that, depending upon the effectiveness of the insurance regulators in their state, can be a pretty dicey proposition.

    Actually, I think that the so-called "public option on a level playing field" approach can be a good way of tightening up insurance regulation in this country.  The "level playing field" can be a two-way street.  The insurance companies are arguing that the public option has to operate just like a private insurance company (no government subsidies, no legal power to regulate fees for services).  Fine, but a "level playing field" also ought to mean that the private insurance companies ought to act more like a government agency - reasonable salaries for its executives and no price gouging of its consumers.

    •  Unlike here, they have competition. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Prognosticator

      At least they do in Germany, where an individual has some 200 private plans to choose from. In my state the market is dominated by two (2), count 'em, two, by the way, did I say "two"? insurance companies.

      No Welfare for Insurance CompaniesMonopolies

      Having abandoned my search for truth, I am now looking for a good sig line.

      by kaolin on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:29:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  That's What I Said (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        firant, kaolin

        That's why we need the public option.

      •  That's because we can't buy insurance across (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kaolin

        state borders and take advantage of being in larger risk pools.  

        Having credibility when making an argument is the straightest path to persuasion.

        by SpamNunn on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:00:26 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Very Very Bad Idea (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tmo, wsexson, kaolin

          As I said in one of my posts, insurance companies are largely regulated at the state level, not the federal level.  If you could buy insurance across state lines, you would effectively be buying insurance from an unregulated insurance company.  Now, I will tell you exactly what would happen if that took place.  You would hear a flood of horror stories about how somebody bought health insurance and it turned out the company didn't have sufficient capital reserves to pay the promised coverage, so people got stuck with enormous medical bills and no insurance, and meanwhile the head of this insurance company got on a plane to Tahiti with all of the money leaving the company in bankruptcy with inadequate funds to pay off on the policies.  Then somebody would yell, "Hey how come nobody was regulating companies like this?"  Then we'd find out that it was all because the Republicans pushed through legislation to let you buy insurance across state lines without imposing kind of federal regulation.

          If this all has a familiar ring to it, let me refer you to the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act and the elimination of regulation of financial institutions.  The Republicans keep pulling off the same scam.

          •  Then set Federal standards for reserves, and stop (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            kaolin

            letting each State impose mandates.  Agree upon one set of mandates, nationwide, and trim non-essential programs, like more than one smoking cessation program or acupuncture.

            Having credibility when making an argument is the straightest path to persuasion.

            by SpamNunn on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:49:55 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  That's Fine, But (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              wsexson, kaolin

              What do you think is the likelihood of passing comprehensive Federal regulation of health insurance companies?  How many Republicans are going to sign on for that?  That's much more of a "big government" project than anything that is currently on the table.

            •  The profit motive (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Prince Nekhlyudov

              Do you really believe that insurance companies would willingly trim their profits just to get "more customers"? I doubt it.

              Finally, it you have a complaint with your insurance company, you can take that complaint to the state regulatory board. But if you are purchasing a policy that
              has been written in another state (and that's what you're talking about), if you have a complaint you'll have the hurdle of dealing with a board in another state.
              Good luck!

              This is a smokescreen....it's just something Repubicans throw out there because it "sounds good". Even they know it meaningless in the overall issue of health care costs.

        •  A talking point (0+ / 0-)

          This is one of two bogus Republican "solutions" they bring up. The other being "tort reform". There's a reason state's have the power to regulate the health insurance companies. Furthermore, this would require either eliminating that or
          establishing a national network of regulations.

          Furthermore, the cost of premiums varies within a company from one state to another for one basic reason: the COST of doing business in that state.

  •  Pithy - above (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AllisonInSeattle

    It becomes a tax payer subsidized insurance company profit mazimizing program without a public option.

    Lou Dobbs is asking someone to assassinate Howard Dean with a stake to the heart. How can this be legal?

    by mrobinson on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:50:09 AM PDT

  •  Apologies if this has been posted above... (0+ / 0-)
  •  In this case the 'third way' is (3+ / 0-)

    actively worse than the first two. If I was a single young adult living in America without a dime to may name but a reasonable though not by any means high income and I did not have a car or a house yet, I would opt to skip overpriced semi-fraud health insurance or at least have it as a very, very low priority.

    If the government came along and told me I had to spend the money I wanted to hold for a downpayment on a house instead of waiting until I was 30 or so for health insurance (which I did, and at the time I did not even know it was a scam and it may not have been as bad back in the 1960s for all I know) I would be seriously angry.

    That outcome would be a complete and utter political disaster for Democrats.

    We have only just begun and none too soon.

    by global citizen on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:53:09 AM PDT

  •  "Force" Us? (0+ / 0-)

    >But I don't get how you can possibly hand me a health care bill with an individual mandate and no public option. ... You're going to force me to pay an insurance company for shit insurance that as a free market actor I decided not to even try to buy?<</p>

    Ok, question:

    How can the federal government "FORCE" anyone to do that? I mean 'how' practically would they go about doing that?

    •  The House Bill (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tmo, kaolin, Irixsh

      Would have a tax based on a percentage of gross income, and if you have health insurance, either individually or through your employer, you don't have to pay the tax.  Conceptually, the public option is not essential to having a mandate (the point Sebelius and Obama were recently making).  However, in practical terms it is necessary, because in many states there is little or no competition among health insurance companies, so the public option is essential to giving consumers meaningful choice.

    •  If you don't (6+ / 0-)

      have proof of insurance at tax time they will collect it then.There will be no bill,no recourse,no choice.That's what happens here in MA.

      •  Shocking no one has sued yet (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tmo, Brooke In Seattle, kaolin

        see below comment from me.

        •  I Don't Know What The Grounds For A Suit Are (0+ / 0-)

          Universal coverage is, IMO, a good idea.  Indeed, we have it now anyway, we just provide it in an incredibly inefficient half-assed way, i.e., emergency rooms; this system just imposes costs on everybody else, primarily on people who pay high insurance premiums.  There are only two rational ways of getting universal coverage: single payer or mandates.  I don't see anything illegal or unconstitutional about mandates.  Now, as a practical matter, mandates only work if consumers have a meaningful choice in buying insurance.  However, if we had a robust competitive market for private insurance - which we don't have, but some other countries do - I would not see anything wrong with having mandates without a public option.

    •  taxes (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Prognosticator

      you'll just have to pay a tax penalty if you don't have insurance.

  •  How is Third Way still in Business? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    slinkerwink
    Yea, Im calling out all the "tough guys" and "drive by bloggers"

    Seriously, Obama won the primary, and our battle with the DLC and Third Way went away?

    What we thought that Obama hiring Rahm (DLC Goldenboy), Salazar (Blue Senate leader with most credibility) and Hillary and others would end it?
    That they would put down their guns?

    I can list for you time after time where Third Way and the DLC are actively trying to torpedo Obama's agenda AND his presidency.

    I hope today, through the actions of Waldman and Adam Green we can get some semblance of focus in the base of our party back to cleaning out the rats and shit bags that live in the bottom troughs.

    Third Way just hired CNN's Bill Schneider to shill for them:
    http://www.thirdway.org/...

    None of you found it cute that Rahm and Sebelius had a sit down panel with the DLC, but sent Valerie Jaret as WH commissary to the most active base's convention?
    http://www.dlc.org/...

    Al From is retiring from the DLC, leaving a vacum.

    Third Way, only 5 years old, wow they are a hard group to take down.
    They weren't just started by Evan Bayh, Mark Penn and his crook of a wife Nancy Jacobson
    http://www.theatlantic.com/...
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

    Oh yea, and here is a nice last one that this site COMPLETELY missed:
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

    I am not saying stop their messaging, stop these groups completly.

    They are dead set against unseating Obama, the DLC and Third Way will go out of business unless Democrats are in the minority.

    PCCC: http://boldprogressives.org
    TYT: http://www.theyoungturks.com

    by George Pirpiris on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:56:12 AM PDT

  •  Not pithy enough (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kaolin

    Their signs at the next protest.

    No Gov. Take Over!
    No Taxes!

    Our signs:

    No Taxes to Insurance Companies!
    No tax payer subsidized insurance company profit mazimizing program
    without a public option

    Lou Dobbs is asking someone to assassinate Howard Dean with a stake to the heart. How can this be legal?

    by mrobinson on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:57:12 AM PDT

  •  Exquisite rant, David (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Balam, kaolin

    I wrote to Obama asking if he would sign a bill with a mandate forcing me to buy insurance from private carriers when there is no public option.

    This LATimes story tells it all. What the lobbyists and the politicians they pay are proposing is a bonanza for the dying health insurance industry that everyone hates. This is the same as the bailout of the banking industry.

    latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/healthcare/la-na-healthcare-insurers24-2009aug24,0,6925890.story

    Healthcare insurers get upper hand
    Obama's overhaul fight is being won by the industry, experts say. The end result may be a financial 'bonanza.'

    By Tom Hamburger and Kim Geiger

    August 24, 2009

    No Public Option? Then NO Mandate -buhdydharma & skywriter

    by skywriter on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:01:01 AM PDT

  •  The only mandate should be on the gov't... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kaolin

    ...to insure anyone who can't afford to pay for the public coverage.  Give all Americans public coverage on day-1 and let people either opt out because they're already insured or agree to pay a cost+3% premium. Or they can apply for a subsidy. No taxpayer funds should be used to subsidize private insurance. None. That is unAmerican.

    Come on. There have to be a hundred ways to design a fair citizen-friendly system. Pick one.

    Otherwise, go ahead and tempt Americans to demand defeat/veto and the Democrats will die a death of suicidal simpishness and corporate-puppetry.

    HR 676 - Health care reform we can believe in - national single-payer NOW.

    by kck on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:02:26 AM PDT

  •  Mandating that people purchase crap insurance (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, Brooke In Seattle, Balam, kaolin

    is a perfect formula for Dems to lose big in upcoming elections.

    -6.75,-3.85 Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck.

    by Sagebrush Bob on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:02:41 AM PDT

    •  Which is, hopefully, why it won't happen. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tmo

      I think Obama's smart enough to realize that this would destroy their majority and likely doom his chances at re-election.  So, there'll be a public option.  That's really the linchpin of the entire reform bill, because without a public option, you can't have an individual mandate, and without an individual mandate, you can't get the insurers to submit to key regulations like guaranteed issue.  

      So basically, no public option = no mandate = no insurance regulation = no reform.

  •  Exactly, mandated private insurance is a loser (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Balam, kaolin

    and good luck trying to get that money out of the underground economy, which increasingly I, and many of my friends, are participating in.  

  •  Action item from those in the know requested (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, Brooke In Seattle, kaolin

    We can easily test this mandate. We have the exact mandate in MA right now, signed by Mittens. It's absolute garbage, and I'm sure you could find a contingent willing to sign on to something if someone has the training in how to challenge it!

  •  May I swipe this column? (0+ / 0-)

    Seriously - may I steal it? I've been thinking precisely the same thing, but you wrote it better than I ever could have.

    I'd like to swipe it and send it to my Senators (McConnell and Bunning. Heh.) and my Congressyoyo (Ben Chandler, Fence-Sitter, KY). They need to read it. Digest it. And if it gives them indigestion, they can get medical treatment without using their insurance. Y'know - kinda like taking one for the Gipper.

    In 1971, Don McLean wrote about the day the music died. On 17 July 2009, the news died. RIP Walter Cronkite.

    by SciMathGuy on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:15:03 AM PDT

  •  Amen, David! (0+ / 0-)

    I'm with you 100%. In fact, I think the public option is just a distraction, getting everyone focused on whether there will or won't be one.  But it's little better than what we have now.  The only real solution is single-payer.  Unless everyone needing health care is placed in the same pool, and the government, through whatever funding mechanism is established, can negotiate costs with providers and big pharma, then there will be no real reform.  We'll just be forced to pay more for the same right to be denied and crappy coverage we have now.  HR 676 is the way to go.  And we need to keep fighting for that.  

  •  David Waldman, do your homework (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chrisfs, Prognosticator

    Maybe Im just a partisan hack.

    Maybe it's because I know someone that got hired by this joke of a group.

    But Third Way is not about a "Third Way".

    They are a front group for Mark Penn, Evan Bayh and the DLC.

    How are Progressives taking this one on the chin.

    Third Way is the Blue Dog's think tank, their Lewin group where they can fabricate talking points and studies and then sell them as fact to people who listen to them.

    At the end of the day, its all about the media.
    Third Way JUST hired Bill Schneiderman to spit their talking points on CNN
    http://thirdway.org/...
    And what, you dont think Bill will refer to them as a "Progressive Think Tank".

    Man, I should get a job with the GOP, beating us is just too easy.

    You think that if the GOP had a think tank, who sole purpose was to reach out, compromise etc, but it was really a front group for progressives?  you think they would let that stand?

    PCCC: http://boldprogressives.org
    TYT: http://www.theyoungturks.com

    by George Pirpiris on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:21:15 AM PDT

      •  Didn't mean to come out harsh (0+ / 0-)

        I am more frustrated with the site as a whole as how invisible Third Way is, and even the DLC to our discussions.
        I was in the other thread, and some prolific bloggers in here thought Slinkerwink was referring to the DNC when she said DLC.   DLC and Third Way in the news in any form should set off alarm bells for everyone.
        They are a much bigger threat than the RNC could ever dream of.

        I am one of those folks who watches these clowns like a hawk.  I hope I turn out to be a tin foiler in the end, but I do know the power of the center righters to destroy our message and how the MSM gobbles it up.

        And as far as media, it's really time for us to focus hard on CNN, along with years of Lou Dobbs, now one of their senior reporters works for Third Way like I said, and John King's Sunday show seems like a festival for republicans and DLC dems.

        PCCC: http://boldprogressives.org
        TYT: http://www.theyoungturks.com

        by George Pirpiris on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 01:37:43 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  thank you (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Balam

    you expressed the attitude i have towards this as well. hopefully it will make a difference.

  •  The "public option" IS the "third way" (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Prognosticator, Balam

    The REAL answer is single-payer. The "public option" is just a phony scheme to funnel money to insurance companies who will be subcontracting the work of, or masquerading as, "coops" or "non-profits". This is just one of the reasons there's no groundswell of support for health care reform at the town hall meetings. Because the best that Obama is proposing, which may not even come to pass, sucks.

    Eli Stephens
    Left I on the News
    "If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor." - Desmond Tutu

    by elishastephens on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:29:21 AM PDT

  •  Took the words right out of my mouth. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AllisonInSeattle, Balam

    Glad I'm not the only one.

    If you don't know history, you don't know anything. You're a leaf that doesn't know it is part of a tree. ~Michael Crichton, Timeline

    by Leslie H on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:33:25 AM PDT

  •  Dems have to compromise with selves? (0+ / 0-)

    We must have public option!! Compromises are unnecessary.

    They say they can get competition without it? HA. They are not realizing then that they've had competition for decades and it's gotten worse.

    Does Glenn Greenwald have it right? That the WH and top Dems wanted it this way all along, without a public option?

    I really don't understand how bipartisanship is ever going to work when one of the parties is insane. - John Cole

    by Gorette on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:43:54 AM PDT

  •  This is sooo fucked (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Prognosticator, DaveVentura

    IF THE REPUBLICANS WERE THE MAJORITY AND CAME UP WITH THIS PLAN, THERE WOULD BE DEMOCRATS RIOTING IN THE STREETS!!

    Oh - yes there would be!!! This is nothing but a giveaway to corrupt insurance corporations! This is INSANE.

    So if your family makes over $66k a year, now you MUST pay $1000.00 per month to a private company who will take 30% of that in admin fees IF they ever do pay your claims? And you get no government subsidy?

    THE REPUBLICANS WOULD NOT DARE COME UP WITH THIS PLAN IF THEY WERE IN THE MAJORITY. THEY WOULD NOT DARE!!!!!!!!!!!

  •  Like car insurance, which is mandatory for (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cmkinchi

    car owners, health insurance should be mandatory for anyone that owns a body, so that they rest of us don't have to pay for you when you have to go into the shop for repairs.

    That's where the big money gets spent - hospitals passing the cost of indigent or uninsured care on to those who do have coverage.  

    If everyone had some skin in the game, that cost would virtually disappear.  Now if we could only figure out how to cover those uninsured patients who truly cannot afford any coverage at a reasonable price, we would have things knocked.  

    Having credibility when making an argument is the straightest path to persuasion.

    by SpamNunn on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:59:13 AM PDT

  •  Thank Rahmbama, Daschle and Baucus For This (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AllisonInSeattle, mr market

    How the final bill will look was decided months ago behind closed doors with the corporate lobbyists. The public option would be gutted, no drug importations and no government price negotiations as well as the mandates. Daschle is simultaneously the shadow HHS Secretary as well as a key [shadow] healthcare industry lobbyist - yet he's not even a registered lobbyist! - and he was the one who got the "co-op" ball rolling. If anything, I expect the co-ops to be used to inflate insurance companies profits by sending their most expensive clients there while they would roll in the dough with all the new clients who were ordered to sign up for them by threat of a taxation gun held to their head. What's so terrible is the WH is calling individual mandates part of the "goodybag" and the astroturf is already starting to come out.

    This would be severe as it would break Obama's promise not to raise taxes on those making less than $250K and it is precisely those people who are young and making less than that amount who would be hit by this gun placed to their head. Having someone making $52,000 per year having to pay over $1200 in additional taxes would not go do wn well. Then again this could have the upside of having their finally be a viable third party - or least have the politicians take their constintuents seriously knowing that non-corporatist primary challengers would result.

  •  Welcome to Massachusetts. Mandate w/no public (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AllisonInSeattle

    option.

    The future is what we decide it is going to be.

    by Ann T Bush on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:02:26 AM PDT

  •  Why is it crap insurance? (0+ / 0-)

    Even without a public option, the reform bills mandate that certain basic things must be covered. Preventative medicine, hospitalization, drugs and mental health care among them.
    Max out of pocket is $5000 per year, no lifetime limit on benefits. Premiums variation is 2:1.

    Now I think the public option is needed as an alternative to provide competition and help keep premiums down, but

    Unless you are making the statement that any insurance offered by a private company is crap insurance regardless of the coverage, then it's harder to say that the plan is crap insurance.

  •  No mandate, means pre existing conditions stay (0+ / 0-)

    If you don't want an individual mandate, then you can kiss goodbye a requirement for insurance companies to cover people with pre-existing conditions (guarenteed issue).
    One is the flip side of the other.
    Without an individual mandate, guarenteed issue becomes a very costly losing game for any insurance offerer private or public.
    The offerer has to pay for claims out of premiums.
    But if people aren't required to buy insurance, they won't, until they are sick, and when they are sick (and the insurance company can't turn them away and can't charge a huge premium), then their claims will be much higher than any premiums that can be charged while they are sick.  When they recover, the person can simply drop the insurance to save on the premiums until they are sick again.
    This leaves the offerer, private or public without enough income to pay for the claims.

    So you can be upset about mandates, but keep in mind what you are giving up if you refuse them.

    •  Don't need mandate if product is good (0+ / 0-)

      As I said above, there are OTHER ways to deal with adverse selection.  These are used all the time by entities such as the federal employees health benefit plan and other large employers -- federal employees aren't required to purchase insurance, but if they don't and they get sick, they have to wait a year to get coverage.  If you make the carrot sufficiently attractive, you don't need as many sticks. The reason why they need a stick is because the carrot tastes like vomit.

      •  coverage for everyone (0+ / 0-)

        so if a federal employee gets sick and doesn't have insurance,it's quite possible they may declare bankruptcy or lose their house, due to the illness.
        That's your way of dealing with it? I thought that was part of the problem we were trying to solve.

        As I pointed out in another comment, the mandated health coverage is quite good. It's a decent carrot, unless you have decided that all private insurance is bad simply because it's private.

        All the models that reformers use as examples,
        Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Japan. They all have an indiividual mandate on one form or another.

        •  Right, but they don't have out of control costs (0+ / 0-)

          Not like we do.  I am not opposed to mandates, just mandates where it is clear there is no likelihood that costs will be controlled.  I believe that private insurers would have controlled costs long ago if they could have because they are not benefited by high costs.

          What's your plan for controlling costs?

          •  mandates increase preventative care (0+ / 0-)

            If everyone is covered, more people will seek preventative care and catch conditions earlier. This by itself helps control costs. Avoiding one stroke or heart attack ER visit is worth more than even years of heart drugs.
            Hospitals won't have to figure in the cost of care for uninsured 'can't pay' cases into their costs.

            Disallowing pre-existing conditions as a denial forces plans to compete more on cost. If plan A and B offer the same coverage and plan A costs more, I'm jumping to plan B and the insurance company can't deny me. This will force insurance to keep costs low while covering mandated items.

            Those are in the current bill.

            If you want to get more regulatory, you can mandate loss ratios, stating that companies must pay out at least 90% of their premiums in care.

  •  I will not accept a mandate for pirate insurance (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    julifolo

    No. I will not pay. Sue me. Arrest me. Threaten me. I will NOT pay a pirate insurance company because the government says I must. No public option, I will not obey any mandate to buy pirate insurance. Period. Come and get me.

  •  I'm Not Really Worried About This (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Prognosticator, burlydee, tr GW

    Mandates without a public option doesn't have a chance of passing the House.  This is going to go through conference, and the conference bill will have a public option, but probably less "robust" than the left would like.

    •  I fully expect legislators to (0+ / 0-)

      cook up some smarmy, half-assed legislation that will do little to actually fix the nefarious practices that the health insurance engages in.

      They'll be able to get around the rules, or get wrist-slaps if they break them...

  •  Third way = third rail. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FakeNews

    No mandate unless you have a govt option, i.e., Medicare buy in.

    Settling for Health Insurance reform is OK for a first step.  So, insurers can't deny anyone, or drop anyone for any reason, no caps on payouts. That should be acceptable for the first step toward a public option and then on to single payer.    Every journey starts with a single step.

    A mandate is a financial windfall for the insurers. I don't see how the president would go for that.  Remember they made his mother's last days miserable.  I don't think he is in a generous mood when it comes to health insurers.  He wants everyone to be able to afford health care, not to have everyone have to buy into the insurers.

    To whom much is given, much is expected.

    by tellmenolies on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:27:12 AM PDT

  •  A-F*UCKING-MEN (0+ / 0-)

    All the real Christians have already been raptured.

    by Audri on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:54:18 AM PDT

  •  Why should I be forced to pay some guy's bonus? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wsexson

    Health care should not be a profit center!!!

    No public option, no mandate!!

    If we went all the way towrad universal single payer coverage we wouldn't be having these crappy debates.

  •  Is anyone just pissed off at this whole thing? (0+ / 0-)

    Ok I cant take it anymore. This thing has been mishandled misrepresented and just looks like an outright monkey fucking a football. First and foremost we need to tell Nancy thanks for the good times but you need to get the hell off the national stage. She is flip and even though I like her politics ,like most Americans I dont want to have to look at her. She and Harry Reid both have bungled this whole thing. It is close to football season so Im going to use a fotball analogy because well, I like football and most football fans are fanatical nuts, god love em. Why didnt we do this 15 yards at a time. First insurance reform! First down and nobody is arguing, even the fucking blue dogs are on the team. Then pharmaceutical reform. First down and everybody is cheering. Meds are affordable then we move to the next health care item until we are 5 yards out have the momentum and send the fullback up the middle for the public option score. Instead it feels like we are standing on our 10 yard line with our 11 and the opposing teams 40 extra players throwing hail marys at the goal. We have allowed ourselves to be made to look smarmy and underhanded by putting an enormous bill in front of a generally stupid population and said oh, "They'll get this." Ive tried to read it without a legal dicitoinary but I keep falling asleep. Im ranting but I'm pissed because whatever does pass is gonna look like swiss fucking cheese compared to what we could have passed one bill at a time. Nancy and Harry are both hanging to the POTUS coat tails but instead of him lifting them up they are pulling him under. We've got a new leader with a vision get rid of the old hacks and find someobody that can explain something without sounding like a shithead.

    Ok Ive ranted and I still dont feel better.

    •  Yeah, you did rant (0+ / 0-)

      Most of what you say strikes a responsive chord. Though I don't agree to the extent you do that Pelosi has been a bad player in this. If there's one body that
      has been largely consistent, it's been the House Dems. Reid? Well, that's Harry.
      Who ever knows what he's doing....

      I will say though that Pelosi has a herd of cats to keep corralled. She has to play "politics" and numbers with the Blue Dogs (we've seen it on numerous pieces of legislation so far). But she has rarely if ever wavered from hard core positions she's publicly taken.

      Reid has to deal with a reality: You can't pressure or bully or really even threaten Senators in your party. They're not a herd of cats, they're 58 self-perceived little Kings. Reid is no more or no less to blame for the overall tactical problems related to health care reform - but for this a greater blame goes to the White House for its strategy in this.And the horrible job of "messaging" the need for reform.

      As for the enormous Bill, I've read about 80% of it (some can easily be skipped). But all Bills are written in legalese....that's a necessity. And Bills aren't written for the public to "understand" as written. That's been the case forever....

      It might in retrospect been nice if there had been a "layman's version" of the Bill produced for reading (something only hundred pages of so... But that's never happened before. Something to consider...

      •  a) there are 60 dem senators, b) make them . . . (0+ / 0-)

        filibuster old school.

        If Reid made the republicans stand up and filibuster healthcare reform, this whole argument gets alot easier to explain to the public at large.

        "What's going on with healthcare?" "The Repugs are blocking reform, just turn on the TV, Grassley is reading the bible, I guess he skipped the gospels though, he seems to think God hates the poor. Republican bastard."

        Ah, sweet simplicity.

  •  Taking a stand... (0+ / 0-)

    This is a worthwhile discussion (even if the diary is hyperbolic)....because it does force a decision. Assuming there is no public option or effective counter-balance to the current industtry:

    Which is the greater priority:

    Following through on the desire to insure as many uninsured as possible. Or:
    Controlling overall health care costs

    I just love existential moments in politics, and this is shaping up to be one.

    This is not unlike a question I ask of my "screamer" friends:
    What's more important to you: Keeping government out of health care or
    controlling health care costs?

  •  No Public Option, No Mandate (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wsexson

    http://www.dailykos.com/...

    Let's take out the part of this bill that helps the insurance companies. Maybe then they'll order their senators to talk real compromise.

    •  Order? (0+ / 0-)

      How do you "order" Senators to do anything? Perhaps the word "presssure" might apply, but that's only on a good day in the caucus.

      What they needed to have done is to have convened the Democratic caucus last December for a 3 or 4 day retreat and actually have put on the table what was coming down the road under Obama and health care. And foreseen some of these "divisive" issues among Senate Dems, and tried to deal with them then and there (heck wouldn't even have needed to have the whole caucus, just a couple of key players from each of the critical committees).

      That's what Reid should have done....but that's also what the Obama team should have worked with him on. I'll bet they didn't.

      Let's hope they've learned a couple of lessons from this when it comes to immigration reform, for example.

  •  I won't pay a corporation for health care. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    CMYK

    Tried it once. Shitty system, rotten service. I will never again pay a corporation for health care. That is all. My health care system will be run by my government, not some vampire CEO feeding a hungry pack of howling investors.

    Hokey Pokey: n. Boring, conservative sex to make more boring conservatives.

    by jimbo92107 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:53:32 PM PDT

  •  Congress is mis-understimating us (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    CMYK

    They actually think they can push through this "mandate," minus any true public option, and the American public will simply lie down and take it.  They could not be more wrong, and speaking of Waterloos, this would be theirs.  The Republican party is already in its death throes.  If a majority of Democrats in both houses cannot pass meaningful and much needed health care reform, and instead shows that they work for the insurance industry and not the American people, that's going to be a blow against the party from which it will be hard to recover.

    This is a deal breaker for me.  If my elected representatives screw me (and you) on this issue, I will figure I'm gonna die anyway without health care, so why not spend the last of my time on earth making sure these guys get voted into obscurity.  I think we should also get rid of the gold-plated insurance Congress critters so enjoy, if they don't want to share that benefit with us peons!

    And as the diarist said, good luck getting that money out of me for mandated insurance.  Not.gonnna.happen.  

    We, as a nation, need to take a page from the civil rights movement, and peacefully break the law.  Everyone refuse to pay the premiums.  Simply opt out. You want us to pay the killer tax of mandated health insurance that won't cover our needs and will break our backs -- let's see if they'll pay attention to the sound of millions of Americans shouting "Hell no!"

  •  Mandate with out PO--bye bye Dems (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    CMYK

    If the Dems pass a mandate w/o a PO (aka gift to insurers), the potical backlash will be swift and decisive. I think most of them will figure this out. Without a PO, health care reform is effectively DOA.

    Live unity, celebrate diversity.

    by tjfxh on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 02:55:46 PM PDT

  •  How would you enforce an insurance mandate? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    CMYK

    Are we going to reinstitute debtors prisons?

    My name is Douglas Watts.

    by Pometacom on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 03:51:46 PM PDT

  •  When you think about it, idea is so stupid (0+ / 0-)

    The Insurance companies want to reach that final frontier of profits.

    So they are going to MANDATE that the gov't cause people who cannot afford insurance buy insurance.

    With what? With what exactly? The money they don't have?

    Not to mention -- did they consider that years of no insurance means that a HECK of a lot of these people have some untreated physical needs? That is, the uninsured are in many cases a walking menu of treatment needs.

    They have, in many cases, compromised health from doing without normal health care for years.

    See what I mean? Or am I seeing what you mean?

    At any rate, mandating that people who're living like those in Barbara Ehrenreich's book pay you for insurance? Hahaha. Mandating that small business people -- who look good on the surface, sure, but are right on the edge financially and scraping by -- pay you for insurance? Hahaha.

    It's really not a good business plan, not a way to make bucket loads of money. It's just plain stupid.

    This health care system is a moral atrocity. Dr. Ralphdog

    by AllisonInSeattle on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 02:11:11 AM PDT

  •  Medicare Equality (0+ / 0-)

    will do the trick.

    Expand the program that's already there to everyone who wants it.  Those who don't want it can just opt out and shut up. End of story.

    Reporter to Mahatma Gandhi: What do you think of Western Civilization? Gandhi to reporter: I think it would be a good idea.

    by tryptich2 on Sun Aug 30, 2009 at 09:49:57 AM PDT

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site