Tuesday, December 15, 2009

N-CHEAT* The CorpoRat Congress Would Fuck Us. Really.

At this moment in the kabuki/bukkake that is the ritual being played out in Congress over the fate of the health of, basically, ALL Americans, now and for all foreseeable time (cuz they NEVER "return" to "improve" anything, ever--witness the PATRIOT ACT) this seems to be a rough outline of the most salient points of the compromises and such labored over so extravagantly for the past year--but which would have been exactly the same in most particulars if it had been presented last February--if you are a citizen of average means:
1. A Legal Mandate upon every American buy insurance from private companies, at whatsoever price the supplier decides, without the choice of a public option;
2. Higher (even first-time) taxes on middle class health care plans--e.g., unions-- and a free ride for the wealthy;
3. Higher insurance premiums, which will INCREASE in cost by about/at least $1000 a year;
4. Increased O-o-P (out of pocket) health care costs in higher deductibles and co-pays;
5. Insurance companies will continue to be exempt from anti-trust laws, inhibiting competition;
6. A sweet, sweet deal for PhRMA preserving them from being required to negotiate prices for Medicare drug users;
7. Monopolies granted on new biologic drugs so they will never become generics
8. NO medicare expansion
9. Despite explicit declarations to the contrary, there will be annual and life-time limits on benefits and
10. And to top it all off, the IRS fines you if you won't shell out money to insurance companies!
Howzatt f' CHANGE, M'fu'er? You got a pro'lem widdat? Do you? Well, DO YOU??? Good...I didn't think so....
(BTW: N-CHEAT = "Noone Could Have Ever Anticipated That/This")

From Luke Mitchell's excellent essay in the Dec. # of Harper's:
"The private insurance industry, as currently constituted, would collapse if government allowed real competition. The companies offer no real value and so instead must create a regulatory system that virtually mandates their existence, and soon will actually do so."
With the "Lieberman" Bill, this will become a fait accomplis. Which was, of course, what was always the plan.

This whole "kabuki/bukkake-debate" was and is pre-emptive. The intention, expressed in the discourse, was never to reform health care, per se, but to enslave everyone to CorpoRat interests BEFORE momentum toward real (i.e., single-payer) reform--which peeked out provocatively, tantalizingly, and seemed ready to explode during the campaign--could have a chance to flower into REAL reform/movement.

That's a likely reason why Obamanable Sno-job jumped it to the head of the line, ahead of the economic crisis, and why single-payer was declared 'doa' from Day 1. Now, once the Health Insurance Parasites have EVERYONE in their toils, they reckon the inertia of complaisance will inevitably set in, and it will become more and more difficult to dislodge the parasites without damage to the hosts. Even acute displeasure may be mitigated by the perils of the "unknown."

To say nothing of socialism...

I continue to be astonished, and to a certain extent appalled, by the apparent naivete, or gullability, or credulousness, of blind faith, or whatever it is that makes anyone ever think that any "change" or "reform" would redound to the benefit, aid, or assistance of average people. Roosevelt did it, with the NRA; LBJ's civil rights and Medicare initiatives. I cannot think of ANY case since 1980, and damn few before it, when a major shake-up hasn't resulted in the people getting fucked.

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