Friday, February 26, 2010

NOT YET A SOPHOMORE

He is either stupid or dishonest. You just can't have it both ways.

I have often accused President BO of being sophomoric.

In case you don't know what that means, here is the definition:

Main Entry: soph·o·mor·ic

Function: adjective

1 : conceited and overconfident of knowledge but poorly informed and immature
2 : of, relating to, or characteristic of a sophomore

3 : juvenile, puerile, and base comedy that would normally be expected from an adolescent. It is used to refer to a type of comedy that often includes bathroom humor and gags that are based on and appeal to a silly sense of immaturity.

During that magnificent trap that the president set for Republicans, which to their discredit they bought into, President BO tried to use automobile insurance as an example of the short-falls of insurance in general. He tried to apply it to health insurance as follows:

"When I was young, just got out of college, I had to buy auto insurance. I had a beat-up old car. And I won't name the name of the insurance company, but there was a company -- let's call it Acme Insurance in Illinois. And I was paying my premiums every month.

"After about six months I got rear-ended and I called up Acme and said, I'd like to see if I can get my car repaired, and they laughed at me over the phone because really this was set up not to actually provide insurance; what it was set up was to meet the legal requirements.

"But it really wasn't serious insurance.

"Now, it's one thing if you've got an old beat-up car that you can't get fixed. It's another thing if your kid is sick, or you've got breast cancer. "

Either he knows that when you choose to buy only required liability insurance it does not cover collision, or he does not know that.

If he does not know that, he is unqualified to speak on the subject of insurance and thus not the one we want "fixing" America's imagined health insurance "problems."

If he does know that, then he deliberately used an illustration designed to mislead, misdirect and confuse the issue.

You just can't have it both ways. He did one or the other.

President BO is either a Tenderfoot (that's a brand new Boy Scout, who has not yet learned all that Scouting entails), or he is a consummate liar.

You just can't have it both ways.

In my humble, but correct, opinion, President BO has refined the art of lying to a fine point.

Now if he could only remember when he lied about what, so as to give the appearance of consistency, he might get past the scrutiny of people as intelligent as you and I are.

If he cannot do even that, then I have to admit, he is not sophomoric.

He has not yet made it half-way through being a Freshman.

29 comments:

ablur said...

The one size fits all regulated insurance really ticks me off.

Right now I am forced to buy -
Maternity - I'm Male in my 40s and don't see the need
stop Smoking coverage - I have never nor will I smoke.
Drug rehab - Not a problem I will be having either

Just those three add an additional $300 a year to my policy.

BO is attempting to do more of the same and worse to me and you. I am only paying an extra $25 a month for the above nonsense. The cost will only skyrocket under the Obamacare plan.

Joe said...

ablur: Currently my wife is not covered, by our choice. Under the president's "plan," we will HAVE to buy insurance for her.

The way I have it figured, going from $0.00 to ANY premium is an increase, and will decrease what I can spend on other parts of the economy.

It is a stupid plan, and will only increase the deficit, debt, national economic woes, burden our grandchildren, decrease quality of care, restrict who gets care, how long they get care and will cost individuals money and freedom.

Other than that, it is perfect.

Right.

Tom said...

I don't think Obama was trying to lie with this auto insurance analogy. I think he was trying to compare the minimum standard of liability insurance to a low quality health insurance plan.

For what it's worth, most Liberals are opposed to the "mandate" part of the plan, especially when there is no public option involved to help keep costs down.

I understand the logic behind it, though I disagree with the conclusion. The rationale goes; if we mitigate risk by spreading it across a large pool for car insurance, health insurance would gain the same benefit by increasing the pool size. In the same way we are compelled to be insured for our cars, we would be compelled to have health insurance because of the inherint risk in becoming sick.

I don't think it makes any sense for very low risk people (say under 30), who may not have much income to be forced to buy health insurance absent any reasonable public plans that are subsidized. Just trying to enforce it would be a nightmare. It's a bad idea in which Obama insists on as caving into the insurance companies desire to increase their member base, and generate more profits.

I'm curious, Joe, and feel free not to reply to a personal question. But, what if your wife had some urgent need for medical care. How are you going to handle that? Are you going to pay cash?

Joe said...

Tom: We have discussed the various options and possibilities and have set out a plan to handle each one as it comes.

So far, we have paid all of her expenses ourselves.

Doctors often offer a discount for cash and medical expenses do serve as a tax deduction after a certain point.

We paid the balance of one emergency room excursion over time, to everybody's satisfaction.

Joe said...

Tom: By the way, the payments we made to the hospital for ER treatment were smaller than payments to an insurance company would have been, probably smaller than payments to President BO's health plan will be (although that is an admitted assumption.)

lisa said...

If Obam is really concerned about covering those without insurance we could at a cost of about 18 billion but the big plan is for Universal Health care which will cost about 10X that or more.
Isn't it comforting to know that Union boss thug Andy Stern is set to make out like a millionaire off this expansion of government and union members?
Right now that thug is in the White house dictating US policy.

Yes we Can't!

Joe said...

lisa: You are absolutely correct. The amount we are being asked to subsidize in health care is enough to run most countries.

Leticia said...

His lying is not just an art form, it's a way of life for this guy. There is no known term to describe his behavior.

I do not want nor need his healthcare plan. It is not up to him to decide for me or my family.

Joe said...

Leticia: Sadly, it soon will be, unless we really bring him to his knees.

Anonymous said...

I cannot believe they are going to ram this through. I hope people will always remember what happened in 2009/10. And worst of all 2008.
I am more than beside myself over this total disregard for what people are saying and more what is good for the elitists in Washington who already get their health care via the taxpayer and making us have to pay for everyone else for less quality.
Durbin saying everyone will have what they have. How can anyone actually believe these thugs?
For the first time in my adult life I am ashamed of my country.

lisa said...

That anon comment was me.

Oso said...

Joe,
It's my observation the media and the public have worked together to make the office of president a personality cult; IMO this began to take root around the time of the Kennedy-Nixon debate when TV arguably swayed the outcome.

Ideally a president would be along the lines of an LBJ or GHWB, someone who has effectively worked his/her way up thru the political ranks;who knows how to get things done.Not necessarily someone who has occupied elected office since the Civil War ended though.

What I find very unfortunate is that a fully qualified candidate who has little stage presence or who has an unappealing speaking voice would quite likely lose an election to a far less qualified but more media savvy and photogenic candidate.

Joe said...

Oso: Undoubtedly, one of the things that attracted so many people to Obama is his almost boyish charisma. Unfortunately, that charisma was not accomanied by any significant leadership experience or knowledge of what America is or should be.

I agree that many have probably been passed over who were well qualified because they lacked that visceral appeal.

Z said...

I was kind of proud of the Republicans at the "summit", for a change.

Let's not be so involved in this that we don't notice that they're saying medicare will now pay 21% LESS Monday than it did today.
That's HUGE and so many oldsters are going to have their docs drop them.
Wait for a huge outcry.

Joe said...

Z: If I'm planning to get sick, I had better get it done today. Problem...I feel fine.

Rats!

The Rs did better than I thought they would, but they didn't really change much, if anything at all.

Silverfiddle said...

I share Oso's lament that the truly qualified (but boring) can't get elected in this country.

I think Obama is in way over his head. Sure, he's a liar as much as any politician is, but the key factor is is complete lack of real-world experience. Teaching school and shaking down companies as a community agitator just doesn't prepare you to be president.

His situation is exacerbated by having pointy-headed lefties around him instead of rational seasoned professionals.

Oso said...

Hi Silverfiddle,

I agree Obama's starting offense and defense suck. He had Stiglitz and Goolsbee hanging around before he got elected, both gentlemen highly critical of the bailouts;Then he got elected and plugged in Geithner and Summers,two of the economic disasters architects.

To clarify my understanding, when you say lefty do you mean essentially one who supports big vs small govt policy or do you mean someone who is generally left on individual issues? Probably the same thing in many or most issues but I feel there is a distinction.

Tom said...

Joe, it certainly is possible to pay some doctor bills, and even an ER visit out-of-pocket, and spend less money then paying insurance premiums. At a few points in my 20's, I went without insurance also and managed just fine because I was in very good health.

The point of insurance isn't to offset minor financial liabilities. It's there to mostly elminate catastrophic circumstances. My employer based insurance has a dedeuctable that's reasonable, but also has an out of pocket cap, so even if the bill is a half million dollars, I'm completely protected.

I suppose a person that goes without health care insurance in that situation could simply use a bankruptcy protection. However, the people who do not have proper health insurance and who rack up big bills that they cannot pay affect the rest of us by increasing our premiums.

This goes back to that seat belt analogy. I don't care if somebody goes without health insurance as long as they don't expect to receive any treatment that they won't pay for. When they do that, it costs me money. That's why it makes more sense just to make sure everyone has coverage, and why medicare is an effective program.

I think it's morally the right thing to do, but beyond any moral, it's the financially smart thing to do.. and it helps me keep more of my own money because the uninsured are not affecting the insured's premiums.

Joe said...

lisa: Haven't you heard? When the polls say that 64% of Americans don't want President BO's health care legislation, that means that most Americans want it. I actually heard Harry Reid say as much yesterday or the day before.

Silverfiddle: You'll get no argument from me on that one.

Tom: What was the morally right thing to do before there was any such thing as health insurance?

Oso said...

Joe,
There are a lot of polls out there, and it's difficult to really take the public pulse because so many firms have their own agenda.

Nonetheless the best I can determine is the majority of Americans want some sort of public option or Medicare for all to offset the health insurance industry.

Because the Obama plan includes neither but is simply the status quo writ large, it would explain the public's dissatisfaction with Obamacare. It specifically excludes what some polls indicate a majority favors.

I don't presume to speak for Tom, but my own two cents would be before the HMO's really took off medical care was much more affordable.

Jim O'Sullivan said...

Ther derivation of 'sophomore' - "the wise fool." Look it up.

Joe said...

JO'S: Is the emphasis on a fool becoming wise or a wise person acting the fool?

In common usage, at any rate, it is the latter.

Tom said...

Joe, you ask "What was the morally right thing to do before there was any such thing as health insurance?"

Prior to modern techniques that cost many thousands of dollars, people just died. My buddy had a heart attack a month ago. It was caught early, the treatment awesome, and he was out of the hospital 3 days later with 2 stents in his heart. Maybe 50 years ago, he would simply have died, thus had no hospital bill.

The bill for the facility (not including professional fees from doctors) totaled 68k. Insurance paid 32k on a contracted rate, and he paid I think 1k total out of pocket. Had he no insurance, he would have been billed for the entire 68K and the hospital would have expected that amount.

If he didn't pay that bill, the hospital would be forced to recoup it by increasing prices. If he could not write a check for 68k, eventually it would make it's way to increased premiums for everyone else.

The short answer is, prior to the existence of health insurance, the cost of health care was much lower because it wasn't much more than stiching people up when they get cut, or some herbal remedy for a head ache. There were no researchers designing equipment that can map out the inside of your body in 3D, nor any of the myriad of amazing advances we've seen in a short span of time.

In the last 100 years, the practice of medicine has seen exponential growth, dwarfing the thousands of years of voodoo witch doctor practices that had existed before it. It's very expensive stuff.

Okay.. I guess that wasn't a short answer, but I really don't understand what you're implying by your question. Are you saying we should go back to using leeches because they are cheaper and we wouldn't need insurance to pay the bill for something we caught in a swamp?

Joe said...

TOM: The first insurance plans began during the Civil War (1861-1865). The earliest ones only offered coverage against accidents related from travel by rail or steamboat. The plans did, however, pave the way more comprehensive plans covering all illnesses and injuries.

The first group policy giving comprehensive benefits was offered by Massachusetts Health Insurance of Boston in 1847. Insurance companies issued the first individual disability and illness policies in about 1890.

In 1929, the first modern group health insurance plan was formed.

A group of teachers in Dallas, Texas, contracted with Baylor Hospital for room, board, and medical services in exchange for a monthly fee.

Several large life insurance companies entered the health insurance field in the 1930’s and 1940’s as the popularity of health insurance increased.

In 1932 nonprofit organizations called Blue Cross or Blue Shield first offered group health plans. Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans were successful because they involved discounted contracts negotiated with doctors and hospitals. In return for promises of increased volume and prompt payment, providers gave discounts to the Blue Cross and Shield plans.

During these times, there were still more people without coverage than with.

Employee benefit plans emerged in the 1940s & 1950s, largely as an incentive to attract workers to a particular company.

Today, upwards of 83% of Americans are covered by some form of health insurance.

What is being proposed is a plan whereby people are taxed (charged a fee by the government) for a plan that is less than the best offered but "better than nothing."

In the process, they are proposing to reduce the benefits on existing plans, including Medicare and Medicaid, and/or taxing employers who fail to offer the plan, as well as penalizing those who don't want the plan.

BTW: As a matter of fact (a minor technicality in your response), more and more doctors are turning to leaches for treatment of certain blood disorders.

Most of us should probably stay out of swamps.

Oso said...

Joe,
"more and more doctors are turning to leaches for treatment of certain blood disorders"

Interesting.Just how are doctors using politicians,lawyers and bankers to treat blood disorders?

Joe said...

Oso: That's a good one! Haddn't thought of that.

Tom said...

I haven't seen anything releated to cuts in benefits for Medicare and Medicaid. Care to point me to where that's demonstrated?

Medicaid, of course, are state programs that are partially federally funded.. however, they are, indeed, state programs.

By the way.. are you aware that roughly half of all health care dollars spent in the US every year are via government programs?

Joe said...

Tom: Medicaid was created on July 30, 1965, through Title XIX of the Social Security Act. It is administered by states, but it is a federal program.

State participation in Medicaid is voluntary; however, all states have participated since 1982.

Beginning today, March 1, 2010, certain previously allowed services paid for by Medicare have been eliminated. Some of them have been moved to Medicaid, others just dropped.

A 21 percent reduction in Medicare Part B physician payments officially takes effect today after the Senate last week failed to follow in the House's footsteps and approve a measure to provide a temporary 30-day reprieve.

These are the guys we're going to trust with our health care.

You trust them. I don't want to.

Krystal said...

I vote that he's both.