Friday-Sunday, February 18-20, 2005
We are all losing sight of what is really important and we are letting the Bush Administration and the corporate blood-suckers tell us what we think is important. So, in that spirit, here is:
A Health Insurance Idea
There has to be a way to cover those who are at most risk of not seeing a doctor when they are sick. One might think that those most at risk are the very poor, and they are at risk. But what is more alarming is the middle classí risk factor. There are 45 million Americans without health insurance, and over the last four years some 83 million Americans did without health care coverage. No one should have to go bankrupt to see a doctor.
Below is a simple plan. Itís an opt-in plan, with a backup. If you have good health insurance now, then keep it. If not, then this is a plan for you:
Every family, not presently covered by private health insurance would pay 10% of the familyís total yearly income, capped at $80,000, or $8,000 per year, per family. This premium will then be assigned to a health care company drawn from a pool of health care providers in their state (this is similar to being put in an assigned risk pool for auto insurance). Included in the fee will be a full physical examination for each family member once a year. Sick visits will have a co-pay of $25.
Generic drugs will have a co-pay of $15 per prescription; name brand drugs will have a co-pay of $30 per prescription; new drugs, as defined by the Federal Drug Administration will be priced on a drug-by-drug basis.
Weekly incomes would include salary, stock dividends, rental properties and various other sources of income
No income tax will be paid on the medical insurance premium In other words, the premiums would be subtracted before taxes.
The weekly salary will be configured on a 52 week average, or estimates, if necessary
Unemployment insurance will not be exempt
Adjustments will be made at yearís end for any discrepancies, payable quarterly the following year
If a family has health insurance that surpasses the above-mentioned coverage, no fee will be deducted from their wages
Medicare and Medicaid will be unaffected
Since this is an opt-on plan, no one would be forced to join. If a person becomes sick, they would have to pay 10 percent of their salary to pay for their health care. No one should go bankrupt to pay for catastrophic health coverage, even if they donít take advantage of this plan.
Imagine, if you will, the main wage-earner of a family loses his job, and as a result, the whole familyís health insurance. If there were some sort of national health care plan:
That person might be able to look for a better job rather than just settling in order to keep active his health care
That person might start his own, home-based business
Imagine that home-based business picking up, and that person hiring other people
Imagine the feelings of self-confidence if we were to truly make this an ownership society
Krugman Vs. Greenspan (Guess Who the Good Guy Is)
Paul Krugman pans
Alan Greenspan - "By repeatedly shilling for
whatever the Bush administration wants, he
has betrayed the trust placed in Fed chairmen, and deserves to
be treated as just another partisan hack." Indeed, "All The President's Shills" now playing at your local theatres.
Dr. Greenspan gives me a headache. Paul Krugman got so sick of him this week that he called him a "political hack". I am not sure he is a hack but he talks in circles and
For example, this week Greenspan called the low yields in 10 year treasury bonds a "conundrum" - meaning, exactly what? Well, he succeeded in creating such havoc that
both the bond and stock markets were trashed! Good move Dr Greenspan - isn't it time for you to collect social security?
I found it a "conundrum" that Greenspan favors private accounts but doesn't think it will effect social security's solvency. Reading the Greenspan "tea leaves", I suspect he is
mainly concerned about increasing national saving. Well, so am I. The way to do that is to create good paying jobs, provide affordable health care and education. Once
people have money to save, auto-enrollment in 401K plans will help.
Raising more boats will lead to more saving. Start at the bottom and trickle up. Forget about the trickle-down voodoo that didn't work for the Gipper and is even worst for the
Even though Greenspan said he favors private accounts, provoking Paul Krugman's wrath, his three day testimony amounted to a repudiation of the social security proposals
floated by Bush. Greenspan is clearly saying that the transition costs must be funded up-front, not borrowed, and that price indexing does result in large benefit cuts.
Perhaps, Greenspan did more good than we will ever know.
Alan Greenspan takes hours-long baths each and every morning, according to what his wife, NBC correspondent Andrea Mitchell said on Don Imus' program. I wonder if Karl Rove got pictures? -NG
The lock box idea is a very basic and important concept. All of us "workers" have paid into social security from the first dollar we earned, and assumed that the money would be there when we needed it. Instead, GWB and his cronies have had their hands in the cookie jar, and considered these funds surplus that should be returned to their big contributors. Al Gore said that those funds would be kept in the proverbial lockbox. He won the popular vote by 500,000 votes -- probably a lot more. It's just one more thing that George W. Bush will be charged with when we hold our "Nuremburg Trial" for war crimes and crimes against humanity.
In response to,
"I love my brother, but for a guy with a genius IQ, he certainly is an idiot.",
Pat Thompson writes:
I went through many years of this kind of discussion with my brother. He started out a pot smoking hippie type, but changed over the years. His "education" came from Bob Grant and Rush Limbaugh. We fought a lot during the first Bush administration. Then, my 51 year old brother died in Jan. 04. Believe me, I miss him, but was glad of one thing -- we didn't have to argue over the 04 election. My parents were true blue Democrats and couldn't understand his politics either, particularly during the Clinton administration. I was so proud of my mother, a lifelong Catholic, who could see through what the right wing was doing to Bill Clinton. Blue dress, or not, she thought Bill was a good man for America.
Jack & Bobby (OK - So I'm Fudging it a Bit)
Bush raise nonexistent taxes on people with
$90,000.00 + incomes?
These people should pay Social Security taxes on ALL of their earned income, like the rest of us peons. One of the primary reasons Social Security faces a possible shortfall in the distant future is because the Lipper (as in lip service), once again raided the Social Security Trust Funds to help support the tax giveaway to many of these same group of patriots.
Having their incomes increased at the expense of the Social Security Trust Funds, the least they could do would be to help the program out by paying SS taxes on ALL of their income, like the rest of us.
This will eliminate the Social Security problem completely.
The term "crises", thanks to your ongoing defense of Social Security has quietly been replaced, by the Rove machine, as "problem"
I suggest that we not allow them off the hook. We need to constantly throw THEIR term back at them at every chance.
Absolutely right. I use the word privatization (instead of personalization), "private accounts" instead of "personal accounts". I always say that the Repubs are attempting to create a "crisis" (but of course don't agree with them).
In short, don't use the language they want you to use.
Stupid Quote of the Day (Although its an oldie, it has just been released)
"Look, James, I got to tell you two things right off the bat. One, I'm not going
to kick gays, because I'm a sinner. How can I differentiate sin?"
-"G"lobal "W"arming Bush to James Robison, a prominent evangelical minister in Texas
You can't, Mr. Bush. But fear not, because Karl Rove can. He is without sin, right?
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