Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Health Industry Profit Bonanza, or Bend Over or This'll Hurt Worse

US House Passes Health Care Bill- Stark analysis of the health care bill that passed congress.
Despite the ravings of the ultra-right Republicans, the healthcare restructuring bill is no more a “government takeover” of healthcare than the Wall Street bailout was a takeover of the financial system. The legislation will channel billions of dollars into the pockets of the giant insurers and pharmaceuticals, through a mandate requiring individuals and families to obtain insurance or face a penalty of up to 2.5 percent of income.http://www.countercurrents.org/randall091109.htm

Here's what Lloyd Doggett said about it at St. Mark's in San Marcos: "There are only two or three companies in every market and so this will provide competition by, erm, federal competition."

I asked Lloyd Dogget afterward "Why not just ammend the McCarran-Ferguson Act of 1954." He said this bill did. I just searched the document. No mention of McCarran-Ferguson. Subtitle D — Additional Consumer Protections it lists a bunch of things that don't have anything to do with interstate policy purchasing provisions.

Here's a link to the pdf.

Sec. 101 is illuminatingly full of doublespeak, an ominous definition of "enrollment" which says if uninsured this is your option once implemented, and in another section you must have it within a year, and another about penalty wavier later which allows two years. 2.5 percent of income is correct and an additional surcharge for large incomes.

Private providers must participate in some government regulated exchange which fixes the prices, but that's okay, the same people govern how much they are allowed hike up the rates and will surely be fair to them. It's any company trying to give coverage to the small businesses and groups with less than a few billion dollar market capitalization that I worry about.

So with regard to Mr. Doggett's statement regarding McCarran-Fergusson I suppose he meant this just supercedes all other legislation inherently. Or he lied to my face, that sack of you-know-what.

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