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California Universal Health Care Bill Passes

California 2006 Health Care Financial Ruin Democrats

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#1 CJ AEGIS

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Posted 02 September 2006 - 08:34 AM

When your state is on the verge of financial ruin and collapse what do the Democrats do?  Pass something that will cost millions for the state and send it into total collapse.  

Assembly approves universal health care

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On a largely party-line 43-30 vote, the Assembly approved a bill by state Sen. Sheila Kuehl, D-Santa Monica, that would eliminate private medical insurance plans and establish a statewide health insurance system that would provide coverage to all Californians. The state Senate has already approved the plan once and is expected this week to approve changes that the Assembly made to the bill.

Quote

If he vetoes SB840, the governor will be reminded of his decision come election day in November, Kuehl said.

"I hope that the people of California will hang the albatross of bad health care around the governor's neck," she said.

Quote

-- Eliminate private health insurance plans and create the California Health Insurance System.

I imagine this is just a political statement on the part of the Democrats in the legislature to try to get Schwarzenegger to veto it.  That way they can hammer on him for being the evil and cruel hearted governor who doesn’t want people to have health care.  I all most wish the Democrats had the votes to override a veto it would be an amusing though tragic circus to watch.  

First I fully expect the USSC to can this system in the blink of an eye once it the legal contest over it reaches them assuming it passed by some miracle.  Rather than following Massachusetts more logical lead in developing a system that expands both State Health Care and Private Health Care coverage for the people California has jumped the tracks by banning private health care.  I’m grateful that New York seems to be following more along the lines of Massachusetts on this path then California.  While I still have issues with Massachusetts plan it still makes a lot more sense than California.  The USSC is never going to allow that much of an interference with commerce to stand and that will be quickly overturned.  

Second reason for this to pass is that cost of this program driving California to its knees would be the death knell of this type of total universal health care in the United States.  The State is barely managing to stand on its own as is and this system would likely be the final kick to its knees.  On top of that a bigger economic calamity in California would likely make the Tech Valley Initiative in New York more attractive.  Though the sad thing is I have a feeling a lot of people would suffer in California as businesses move out and refuse to come in.  As a brain drain occurs because people want solid private health care that they get in other states rather than relying on the wobbly bureaucracy of a state that is slowly killing itself.

Edited by CJ AEGIS, 02 September 2006 - 08:39 AM.

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#2 Spectacles

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Posted 02 September 2006 - 09:41 AM

Fascinating....It'll be interesting to see how this plays out.

I'd think that businesses would be all for it, outside of the insurance and pharmaceutical industries. As insurance costs have gone through the roof, this has hurt businesses that provide healthcare benefits as much as it's hurt everyone else. The U.S. has actually lost businesses to Canada and Ireland, in large part because in those countries they don't have to shoulder the costs of providing their employees with insurance. And from the article, it appears that businesses in general are supportive of the plan.

Also, it sounds like they're going to take the time to study the best implementation of a single-payer plan and not rush into something, which is smart and may increase the likelihood of actually putting together something that works. I wish them luck. If CA succeeds, then the rest of the states will follow and maybe access to health care will improve in this country.
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#3 Cardie

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Posted 02 September 2006 - 10:08 AM

However this shakes out, it's interesting to see that the partisan morass and gridlock that are Congress are leading states to get things done on the pressing issues facing the country, from health care, to the illegal immigrant problem, to the minimus wage.

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#4 Rhea

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Posted 02 September 2006 - 02:06 PM

The hammering on Arnie would be richly deserved. He tried steathily to eliminate benefits for the disabled and their caregivers and got caught and deservedly raked over the coals.

Now let's see what the ever-political Terminator will do - to veto or not to veto. Hmmm......... if he vetos it, his party will be happy. If he doesn't it may cost him his job. Should be interesting. :D  :D

Having just had major back surgery - AGAIN - and now being caught in a struggle with my local IPA (it's not even my insurance company denying me, it's the IPA that acts as go-between) to get the care I need, I for one wouldn't be sorry to see it go through, provided it works. San Francisco just signed their own into law (designed, IIRC, to phase into the state's if it flies).

Non-Californians like CJ tend to underestimate our resiliancy, both as people and as a state.

Edited by Rhea, 02 September 2006 - 02:10 PM.

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#5 offworlder

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Posted 02 September 2006 - 02:17 PM

wow, I wonder if my state would be watching that to see how that thing plays out; we have our own problems with doctors moving out because the med suit tort stuff with tripling 'protection' premiums kills their bottom lines, makes them just not afford being able to do their health care here anymore ......................... seems quite hugely drastic though, I couldnt really comment unless I could read a nice summary; would take me six days just to try absorbing the real bill language, but if some pro could write a cogent concise 500 word summary deftly served up to us laity, carpet fuzz, then I could really see what it's about, but seems like banning any private health clinics, hmo, hospitals, services, does that include doctor groups too? and labs too? I think I don't really get it.

Now, how can California be in such an about to fold economic morass with so many rich and just wealthy people living there? I don't get that either. ................. but I don't see how any state, any province, could get along with only welfare healthcare and no private, banned private; maybe like Sweden who always had that, but for a place that didn't build that up gradually?? how?
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#6 Rhea

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Posted 02 September 2006 - 07:38 PM

View Postoffworlder, on Sep 2 2006, 12:17 PM, said:

Now, how can California be in such an about to fold economic morass with so many rich and just wealthy people living there? I don't get that either. ................. but I don't see how any state, any province, could get along with only welfare healthcare and no private, banned private; maybe like Sweden who always had that, but for a place that didn't build that up gradually?? how?

Really easily - the rich don't want to pay any more taxes - most Californians don't, but it's one of those "the rich get richer, the poor get shafted" situations. Part of what is needed to get California out of hock is to raise income taxes, which nobody will talk about because it's political suicide.

Should be interesting. Arnie thought he could just "restructure" and cut out a few things here and there (like, oh, money for the schools, money for nurses, money for the disabled and the folks that care for them, and he found out that the people involved were vocal and powerful).

I have absolutely no idea how this will play out. None.

Edited by Rhea, 02 September 2006 - 07:40 PM.

The future is better than the past. Despite the crepehangers, romanticists, and anti-intellectuals, the world steadily grows better because the human mind, applying itself to environment, makes it better. With hands...with tools...with horse sense and science and engineering.
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When I don’t understand, I have an unbearable itch to know why. - RAH


Everything is theoretically impossible, until it is done. One could write a history of science in reverse by assembling the solemn pronouncements of highest authority about what could not be done and could never happen.  - RAH

#7 Spectacles

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Posted 02 September 2006 - 08:29 PM

Quote

offworlder: but seems like banning any private health clinics, hmo, hospitals, services, does that include doctor groups too? and labs too? I think I don't really get it.

What's being considered, if I understand the article correctly, is that private health insurance be phased out and replaced with a state run insurance program. The article says that the citizens would still have their choice of care providers. The difference would be that instead of several different (and expensive) insurers, the state-provided, single insurance would cover all. Healthcare would be the same, but the current system of myriad employer-provided insurance plans would be replaced by a state-run, single-payer system.
Life would be simpler for the healthcare providers and all who go to the doctor/hospital. Paperwork would be substantially reduced at the provider-level, which would translate, I'd think, into saving of time and money. And if the main criticism is that state managed plans would mean "bureaucracy." then I wonder what people think the current private insurers have?

Apparently, even though the CA legislature is moving on this particular plan, there are competing plans in play, even within the two parties. I notice that the Democratic candidate for governor said in the article that he isn't in favor of this plan but prefers another approach. So this is hardly a done deal.

What needs to happen is that several plans should be evaluated by cost-benefit analysis, compared, and the best plan selected. This is what should have happened with the Medicare prescription plan that was railroaded through the federal, Republican-led Congress and had proved to be more costly and more beneficial to pharmaceutical companies and insurers than to most healthcare consumers and taxpayers.

Like most problems we face, to solve them effectively, we should remove partisan politics and the interests of lobbyists from the picture, look at facts and figures, and make reasonable decisions. Too often neither party does so. I hope that California can because, like the U.S. in general these days, there isn't a lot of fiscal room for error.
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"Although health care enrollment is actually going pretty well at this point, thousands and maybe millions of Americans have failed to sign up for coverage because they believe the false horror stories they keep hearing." -- Paul Krugman

#8 Rhea

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Posted 04 September 2006 - 12:20 PM

Quote

This is what should have happened with the Medicare prescription plan that was railroaded through the federal, Republican-led Congress and had proved to be more costly and more beneficial to pharmaceutical companies and insurers than to most healthcare consumers and taxpayers.

No sh*t. My mom is caught even as we speak in the so-called "donut hole," along with many of her peers, where she is expected to spend thousands of dollars she friggin' doesn't have till she reaches the magic moment when, thanks to the Republican Congress and their idiocy, she's finally covered again.  :glare:  :angry: Gee, how many seniors on a fixed income do you suppose have $2500 or more to spare in a year just to get past the donut hole? Answer is, the rich, who are the only people the Republicans give a sh*t about.

It's turned into one of the biggest disasters in American history. And as far as I can see, no Republican has stirred a finger to do a damn thing about it. How about "gee, we f*ck*d up and we really didn't think this through? Let's amend it." Nooooo. Just let the seniors suffer.

Edited by Rhea, 04 September 2006 - 12:23 PM.

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When I don’t understand, I have an unbearable itch to know why. - RAH


Everything is theoretically impossible, until it is done. One could write a history of science in reverse by assembling the solemn pronouncements of highest authority about what could not be done and could never happen.  - RAH

#9 Lin731

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Posted 04 September 2006 - 07:16 PM

Well love the idea or hate the idea, I think the country as a whole is heading in the direction of Universal healthcare. We have far too many (more every year) with no coverage at all, many with very poor to moderate coverage. I'm sorry but there's no excuse for having a growing percentage of working Americans with no coverage at all. We pay more for healthcare than any other industrialised nation and yet we have a huge chunk of our citizens with no coverage at all? How does that happen? Who's getting all the money? Why does healthcare cost so much more here than anywhere else? Why hasn't government lifted a finger to try and slow down the outrageous escalation in the costs? Why did Bush give big pharma, insurance and the healthcare industry carte blanche to bend us over at that leisure?

Sadly I think the answer is a simple one...big money going into political warchests. This country SERIOUSLY needs a third party or a new Boston Tea Party (except with throw the politicians in the Harbor instead of tea). Better yet, we make politicians live like the rest of us (no top notch healthcare and retirement for them) let them rely on medicare like the rest of us. They have no vested interest in representing us right now. We can't line their pockets at campaign time and given that they have better everything than the people they allegedly "represent", what do they care if more and more Americans have no leath insurance, afterall "they" have great coverage.
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#10 Cheile

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Posted 04 September 2006 - 09:54 PM

um why is this a bad thing?  i thought the fact that the US does NOT have universal healthcare made us "backwards" to the Europeans/Canadians/et al cuz they've had it for years?

i'm confused.  isn't this what would be BETTER for all, because all will be able to be covered instead of those without insurance paying the price?

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#11 Kimmer

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Posted 05 September 2006 - 03:36 PM

Is there any updated news on this? I'm especially interested in how this would affect those retired from state service. How do they plan on dealing with retirees who now live OUTSIDE of CA (they already soak us BIG bucks in health care premiums even though Blue Cross is Blue Cross is Blue Cross and the bills - at least in our area - are half than the cost when we lived in CA) ... anyhow, I can't find any info on this at the normal pages we retirees are sent to. ;)

I did find these 2 pieces of info interesting in regards to the CA bill:

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The report suggests that funding could come through an 8 percent payroll tax and a 3 percent individual income tax.

Quote

The health care measure would:

-- Require separate legislation to establish financing of the system.
What if the funding isn't taken care of? CA has done this more than once and it's always a disaster. A law on the books with no funding.  :eek2:  Just another reason we left the cracked state. ;)

#12 Nonny

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Posted 05 September 2006 - 07:19 PM

Yeah, he's gonna veto.

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I won't jeopardize the economy of our state for such a purpose, the governor said in a statement.
"Such a purpose"?!   :unsure:  

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#13 Rhea

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Posted 05 September 2006 - 08:59 PM

View PostNonny, on Sep 5 2006, 05:19 PM, said:

Yeah, he's gonna veto.

Quote

I won't jeopardize the economy of our state for such a purpose, the governor said in a statement.
"Such a purpose"?!   :unsure:  

Nonny

:barf:

Told ya. If he hadn't vetoed it he was going to be in SUCH trouble with the Republicans, and now we'll see if it costs him his job. :p
The future is better than the past. Despite the crepehangers, romanticists, and anti-intellectuals, the world steadily grows better because the human mind, applying itself to environment, makes it better. With hands...with tools...with horse sense and science and engineering.
- Robert A. Heinlein

When I don’t understand, I have an unbearable itch to know why. - RAH


Everything is theoretically impossible, until it is done. One could write a history of science in reverse by assembling the solemn pronouncements of highest authority about what could not be done and could never happen.  - RAH

#14 Captain Jack

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Posted 05 September 2006 - 09:04 PM

California will never recover.  It's been going from bad to worse with every year.  The state is run incompetently.
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#15 Nonny

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Posted 05 September 2006 - 09:07 PM

View PostRhea, on Sep 5 2006, 06:59 PM, said:

View PostNonny, on Sep 5 2006, 05:19 PM, said:

Yeah, he's gonna veto.

Quote

I won't jeopardize the economy of our state for such a purpose, the governor said in a statement.
"Such a purpose"?!   :unsure:  

Nonny

:barf:

Told ya. If he hadn't vetoed it he was going to be in SUCH trouble with the Republicans, and now we'll see if it costs him his job. :p
We can hope.   :eh:
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#16 Delvo

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Posted 05 September 2006 - 09:25 PM

View PostCheile, on Sep 4 2006, 10:54 PM, said:

um why is this a bad thing?  i thought the fact that the US does NOT have universal healthcare made us "backwards" to the Europeans/Canadians/et al cuz they've had it for years?

i'm confused.  isn't this what would be BETTER for all, because all will be able to be covered instead of those without insurance paying the price?
That is the liberal position on it. The conservative one is that that's no more than a wish because it just can't work like that, and attempting to do so only drains away vast amounts of money with the huge costs while still not really even giving the promised health-care results.

#17 Rhea

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 11:04 AM

View PostDelvo, on Sep 5 2006, 07:25 PM, said:

View PostCheile, on Sep 4 2006, 10:54 PM, said:

um why is this a bad thing?  i thought the fact that the US does NOT have universal healthcare made us "backwards" to the Europeans/Canadians/et al cuz they've had it for years?

i'm confused.  isn't this what would be BETTER for all, because all will be able to be covered instead of those without insurance paying the price?
That is the liberal position on it. The conservative one is that that's no more than a wish because it just can't work like that, and attempting to do so only drains away vast amounts of money with the huge costs while still not really even giving the promised health-care results.

And we know that's a crock of hooey because a number of European countries have universal health care and it works just dandy, thank you.
The future is better than the past. Despite the crepehangers, romanticists, and anti-intellectuals, the world steadily grows better because the human mind, applying itself to environment, makes it better. With hands...with tools...with horse sense and science and engineering.
- Robert A. Heinlein

When I don’t understand, I have an unbearable itch to know why. - RAH


Everything is theoretically impossible, until it is done. One could write a history of science in reverse by assembling the solemn pronouncements of highest authority about what could not be done and could never happen.  - RAH

#18 Delvo

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 12:01 PM

yes, everything's always perfect in Europe, nothing ever goes wrong there.

#19 Talkie Toaster

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 01:01 PM

While I have no problem in principle the NHS here in the UK isn't all that great. When I injuried my shoulder I went private and had the required surgery less than a month after the first consoltation- I'd still be waiting if I relied on the NHS.

Edited by Talkie Toaster, 06 September 2006 - 01:01 PM.

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#20 Rhea

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Posted 06 September 2006 - 02:02 PM

View PostTalkie Toaster, on Sep 6 2006, 11:01 AM, said:

While I have no problem in principle the NHS here in the UK isn't all that great. When I injuried my shoulder I went private and had the required surgery less than a month after the first consoltation- I'd still be waiting if I relied on the NHS.

I imagine you have the same type of problems we have when we have to go outside the insurance company or fight them on an issue.

The difference, which Delvo apparently doesn't get,  is that at least with something like the NHS *everybody* would be covered, which would mean the elderly and poor would suffer less. There are millions upon millions of people in this country with NO health coverage at all. That's what universal health care would change.

I stopped working for myself after 20 years because I couldn't get health coverage I could afford on my own - and not because I had some dreadful disease, but simply because they felt my asthma medication cost too much a month! I'm not sorry I started working in special education, but people shouldn't have to make life choices like that just to get their families health insurance.

Edited by Rhea, 06 September 2006 - 02:04 PM.

The future is better than the past. Despite the crepehangers, romanticists, and anti-intellectuals, the world steadily grows better because the human mind, applying itself to environment, makes it better. With hands...with tools...with horse sense and science and engineering.
- Robert A. Heinlein

When I don’t understand, I have an unbearable itch to know why. - RAH


Everything is theoretically impossible, until it is done. One could write a history of science in reverse by assembling the solemn pronouncements of highest authority about what could not be done and could never happen.  - RAH



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