OT: Health Care Debate Framed by Lobbyists

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From the "evil left wing" New York Times:
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- In House, Many Spoke With One Voice: Lobbyists
In the official record of the historic House debate on overhauling health care, the speeches of many lawmakers echo with similarities. Often, that was no accident.
Statements by more than a dozen lawmakers were ghostwritten, in whole or in part, by Washington lobbyists working for Genentech, one of the worlds largest biotechnology companies.
E-mail messages obtained by The New York Times show that the lobbyists drafted one statement for Democrats and another for Republicans.
The lobbyists, employed by Genentech and by two Washington law firms, were remarkably successful in getting the statements printed in the Congressional Record under the names of different members of Congress.
Genentech, a subsidiary of the Swiss drug giant Roche, estimates that 42 House members picked up some of its talking points: 22 Republicans and 20 Democrats, an unusual bipartisan coup for lobbyists. ....
The e-mail messages and their attached documents indicate that the statements were based on information supplied by Genentech employees to one of its lobbyists, Matthew L. Berzok, a lawyer at Ryan, MacKinnon, Vasapoli & Berzok who is identified as the "author" of the documents. The statements were disseminated by lobbyists at a big law firm, Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal." .... -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/15/us/politics/15health.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1&th&emc=th
Now tell me anything useful is ever going to occur in this country as long as K-Street stands...
Greg G.
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http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/15/us/politics/15health.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1&th&emc=th
Sesame Street is not the only puppet show in the US. ; )
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diggerop said:

Exactly! Is this as big a problem in Oz, or are we unique in the venality of poly-ticks?
This OT was more about who pulls the strings than health care. They've gotten so lazy they don't even rewrite their talking points.
Greg G.
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Sadly, we have similar problems. The faceless men control politics in this country. Has been like that for at least the last 100 years. Who the faceless men are and what they represent changes at times, but too many elected officials are under the control or influence of people who are unelected and have self-serving interests. Lobbyists are part of the problem.
One thing I have noticed in more modern times, is that politicians from both sides, when they retire these days, in addition to generous superannuation and perks for life, seem to somehow have aqquired substantial business interests and huge assets along the way. Just lucky I guess. Union officials get lucky too.
Maybe that's why they call us the "lucky country" ?
diggerop
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diggerop said:

Sorry to hear that Oz isn't the utopia I'd hoped for. Back in the 80s I was determined to move there but got suckered into the US Constitution's "fair and equitable, all men are equal" justice thing. It wasn't...
The US media is so egocentric that seldom does one hear anything about another country unless we are dropping bombs on it. I read here and there, but it's no substitute for actually living there.

Lucky for you, not so much, eh?
Greg G.
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If you feel you've been suckered into living here, why don't you move out? We won't miss you. Ta Ta!
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Ed Pawlowski said:

We? We who? Do you speak for everyone in the US? Or here? I happened to be born here, bought into all the BS they teach you in youth, then found that it's just that. Justice is bought and paid for every day. Weren't you the one who recently emailed me off list about the "evil lawyers?" Further, you don't know darned thing about my experiences with the legal system or venal politicians. Regardless of how I feel about this country, the people in it, and the potential it has, authoritarians en masse combined with self-serving public servants have let this crap get out of control and undermined the essence of what it was intended to be. If a general consensus wants me gone, I'll disappear. I should probably find something better to do anyway. Otherwise, you are free to implement your reader's filter. Ciao!
Greg G.
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As Seamus O'Foolery was often wont to remark, "The whole country's fooked, for want of an Irish king."
diggerop
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diggerop said:

Amusing statement from a man I've never heard of. Nor Google. But it does seem there is nary a good king fit for this day and time.
Greg G.
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wrote:

One hit from Google
http://tiny.cc/KhyW7
(g,r,d)
diggerop
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diggerop said:

Ha! I missed that portion. And to be honest, I don't use Google often, but another old-timer that doesn't search newsgroups.
So that makes you Digger O'Pfoolery - a wise(acre) man indeed! ;-)
Greg G.
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diggerop said:

And why they presciently named the movie, "The Wizard of Oz!" Watch that man behind the curtain... Or those men...
Cue the authoritarian tin foil hat conspiracy debunkers right about... now.
Greg G.
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4ax.com:

That is indeed scary. Especially when the congressman says he didn't know where his staff had gotten the script from.
What the guy said isn't as important as the way he came to say it.
I am in favor of compulsory very basic insurance for everyone, paid for as much as possible by the insured, whether as an employee benefit or by him/her self. On yop of that should be options to get more/better coverage. As long as you had been paying for coverage at any insurance company (including a publicly organized or non-profit one) they would not be able to deny you coverage. I'm sure there are more nitpicking things to state in a law, but couldn't that be the basis?
And if you choose not to get coverage for diabetes or heart disease, no covered kidney transplant or dialysis for you.
--
Best regards
Han
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Han wrote:

So who pays for this very basic insurance for the poor?
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wrote in

Just like now when they come the ER:
You and me.
If they are under preventive care (so the story goes), care should be far less expensive. At least in the long run.
The alternative would be accelerated dispatch, but that sounds so Nazi- like.
--
Best regards
Han
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Han wrote:

You and me don't pay unless we go to the hospital for something.

So it's cheaper to sew up a knife wound or put someone back together that got hit by a bus if they have "preventive care"?

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Han wrote:

EVERY study shows that preventative care is WAY more expensive than to treat the result. Preventative care may be more beneficial for the individual, but it costs more.
Consider diabetes monitoring. Four hundred dollars for a doctor visit and lab tests every quarter quickly add up. Contrast this with a foot amputation if the diabetes is left undetected. Even at Obama's estimate of $30,000 for the surgery (it's more like $800), it's still cheaper to lose the foot.
Cost is NOT a reason for preventation or detection care.
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On Sun, 15 Nov 2009 19:18:56 -0700, Doug Winterburn

I would agree that it's a scandalous statement to make, true or not. But, my guess would be that the statement was designed to insert some anger against the medical industry thereby using that anger to gain additional public support for his health care bills. Whatever designs the man has, he's certainly not stupid.
Considering the scavenging and greed for profit that is gaining so much notoriety lately in the financial and health care industries, it makes one wonder how much truth if any, is in the statement.
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: I know maths is hard, but try to follow along. : : Suppose someone in their early twenties is considered "at risk" for : diabetes. At $400 per quarter for testing, that's $1,600 per year. Assuming : 40 years for the disease to become acute, that's $64,000 directly out of : pocket. Factoring in lost opportunity costs, the real figure is in the : neighborhood of $75,000. Further, only one person out of some larger number : (about ten) ever contract the disease. So then, $750,000 worth of wealth is : destroyed to protect some "thousands and thousands of dollars." : : Trust me on this, "thousands and thousands of dollars" is less than 3/4 of a : million dollars. : : Admittedly, I'm not an expert (although I am good at maths). I just : recollect seeing a compendium of reports that insist preventative care, in : the aggregate, is more expensive than the undetected result. Of course this : mantra ignores such things as Polio vaccine... : : Aside: I know it's what liberals do, and it's hard to avoid it, but insults : really are unbecoming.
So, what you're saying is that you'd rather lose your foot. $1600/year sounds like cheap insurance to me. That's less than my yearly deductible and 20% (plus?) that I shell out every other year for a colonoskopy. But, I have a family history; nothing to do with my lifestyle choices mind you. If I follow your logic I should bank that money and put it toward my colon cancer treatment(s). That's special.
Dave in Houston
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Dave in Houston wrote:

I'm not saying that. I AM saying that one cannot justify prevention vs ultimate outcome on the basis of cost alone.
Those who say spending money now for prevention reducees costs later for the consequences are simply wrong.
In your case, if you can find nine other people similarily configured, you SHOULD all put your money in a pool to be used when ONE of you gets in trouble.
From a purely economic perspective, that is.
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