[FoRK] Accidental theorist lost, wanted back

Stephen Williams sdw at lig.net
Thu Jul 16 10:12:39 PDT 2009

Jeff Bone wrote:
> On Jul 16, 2009, at 6:00 AM, Jeff Bone wrote:
>> This health care reform bill is a monstrosity;  almost everyone who 
>> has anything to do with the health care industry abhors it, almost 
>> everyone who pays for health care in one way or another abhors it, 
>> and almost everyone who uses health care recognizes that this is 
>> going to dramatically reduce quality of care and *raise* --- not 
>> reduce --- costs across the board to everyone involved.  It's a bad 
>> idea all around, from being a 1000+ page monstrosity that isn't even 
>> going to be read before a vote to the very idea that the entity that 
>> does such a good job w/ e.g. the USPS, Amtrak, Interstate road and 
>> bridge maintenance, Social Security, and Medicare should even be 
>> *allowed* anywhere near this critical industry.  In many cases the 
>> added tax burden involved is going to eliminate the ability for (up 
>> to 60% of) the current stay-at-home moms out there to continue doing 
>> so.  Not to mention the fact that this will kill most of the small 
>> rural providers and a large number of the smaller urban providers, 
>> private physicians and group practices, etc.  And then there's the 
>> massive chilling effect on job creation and maintenance, as noted 
>> above:  this will add several percentage points *permanently* to our 
>> baseline unemployment nation-wide, and slow new business creation 
>> while accelerating losses in small businesses.
> Do I need to point out that (ahem, Stephen) that (a) the "goals" that 
> I stated in Q3 last year were in fact the health care reform goals 
> based on Obama's comments, and that you dismissed as being a poor 
> interpretation of said comments, are *in fact* exactly the goals this 
> bill attempts to achieve, and that (b) the cost estimates that I 
> provided are *in fact* now in line with the more-realistic estimates 
> coming from e.g. the CBO and other entities, instead of the pollyanna 
> orders-magnitude-less estimates that you preferred?

If you remember, I simply clarified what the administration had planned 
as contrasted with estimates that made assumptions that may or may not 
turn out to be valid.  It seems that something similar is going on 
here.  The estimates are making assumptions that nothing will get more 
efficient.  If you are going to reform health care, it seems pretty 
crazy not to insist on significant efficiency increase.  As I've said 
before, there is plenty of low hanging fruit.  I'm personally aware of 
several very common medical situations that extract 3-20x as much money 
and services as is necessary.  This is in addition to inflated retail 
prices vs. negotiated insurance company prices.  The retail prices are, 
I'm sure, used to inflate costs of uninsured, medicare, etc.

> Anyone keeping score, here?  Bueller?
> jb

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