Bill Frezza’s complete column is reproduced here – but, please visit his site.
How can the American people be so stupid….indeed.
The Dawn of a New Age In the United States
By Bill Frezza
Snatching victory from the jaws of defeat, after a tumultuous year of political theater, the Age of Obama has dawned.
With legislative success however tarnished by rancor and dissent, the hopes and dreams of generations of Progressives have been fulfilled. The trifecta of Social Security, Medicare, and the first installment of Universal Healthcare are now the law of the land.
Based on a common set of financial principals and an unshakable faith in the wisdom of government the productive power of the young, the healthy, the successful, and generations yet unborn are now fully lashed to the yoke of redistribution. The poor, the old, the infirm, the government employee, the union worker, the dropout, and the slothful have cause to rejoice as their party has delivered the goods.
Or so they think. Let’s take a quick look at the numbers.
According to the most recent Social Security and Medicare trustees report, the unfunded liabilities of these New Deal and Great Society programs exceed $100 trillion dollars. Add the unfunded Medicaid mandates imposed on the states along with the pension liabilities of millions of federal, state, and local government employees and the total becomes almost impossible to comprehend.
Try this on for size. If you confiscated the entire Gross Domestic Product of the US for ten years you couldn’t cover all these liabilities.
Confiscate the GDP? That’s Communism! OK, how about confiscating half the GDP? Too late, that money is already spoken for.
Combined Federal, State, and Local government spending is now at 37.5% of GDP and heading north. The European Union, our Progressive model, has already passed the 50% mark.
Note that these confiscatory levels of taxation can’t even cover this year’s spending. None of the money already being diverted from the economy is being used to shore up the aforementioned liabilities. These not only remain but are swelled by annual deficits.
Get the picture? Obama just handed the American people an empty gift box. Good luck collecting.
FDR promised that Social Security would never lead to runaway spending. LBJ promised the same for Medicare and Medicaid. President Obama is promising that his Universal Healthcare program will not only pay for itself but will generate savings that can be used to reduce the deficit.
The American people cannot possibly be so stupid as to take these political promises at face value. Somehow supporters must imagine that all these bills can be paid for by “the rich” while 95% of Americans enjoy tax cuts and subsidies. As citizens are invited to stick their hands ever deeper into their neighbors’ pockets, a majority of voters must believe they are going to get more than they have to give.
And why shouldn’t they? It’s worked so far hasn’t it? Our progressive income tax system has reached the point where half the population pays no income tax at all. What do they care if tax rates have to go up? And today’s retirees, like Bernie Madoff’s early clients, have already collected many times more than they paid in to Social Security and Medicare. Their thanks? A parting gift of consuming 30% of the nation’s healthcare budget in their final year of life.
FDR and LBJ died before anyone had to deliver on the promises they made. The problem for Obama is that his predecessor’s bills are coming due just as he is piling on more.
Social security recently passed its high water mark. The program now and forevermore will be paying out more than it takes in. In order to write these checks, the Social Security Administration has to redeem the vast mountain of IOUs it received when former Congressmen plundered every last penny of the so called “trust fund.” There is only one place today’s Congress can go to redeem these IOUs, and that is to the general taxpayer.
Kill the rich and eat them, there are too few to cover all these bills. The Age of Obama will certainly bring us equality. We will all be equally broke.
Meanwhile one form of inequality continues to grow unchecked, unnoticed as the media devotes all its energy to chasing banker bonuses. Studies show that government workers now get $1.45 in pay and benefits for every $1 received by comparable workers in the private sector. This should come as no surprise. While private sector unions have largely bankrupted their employers, save those like General Motors that have been nationalized, public sector unions have no such limitations. Representing a solidly Progressive voting bloc, the swelling ranks of public employees can be counted on to pass their bills along to the rest of us as they demand ever larger chunks of a shrinking pie.
This tragedy of abject profligacy can end only one way. Watch the drama unfolding in the land where democracy was born. German charity might allow the Greeks to enjoy their Progressive lifestyles a bit longer but eventually the disease of runaway social democracy will bankrupt the rest of Europe too.
Who wants to bet whether the Chinese will continue financing us long enough to be drawn down this rate hole of self-inflicted fiscal immolation?
Much cyber ink has been used lately predicting significant house and senate seat losses for the Democrats in the 2010 elections. But a piece in American Thinker points out that Dems can’t be voted out if they control the election process through vote buying and other corruption. Giving the vote to millions of illegal aliens in return for keeping them in power is a very real and sinister plan that explains why the Dems are not so worried…
For almost the entirety of the health care debate, the Obama Administration has relied on economist Jonathan Gruber to make the public case for its idea of reform – even the most unpopular parts. But as Firedoglake revealed on Friday, the Obama Administration has failed to disclose that it paid the same economist more than $780,000. Jonathan Gruber’s work has been cited by the White House, Members of Congress, and countless media outlets, but not once did the Obama Administration disclose it was paying him more than $780,000 in tax dollars. This is a huge ethical violation that undermines the entirety of health care reform.
Once we broke this scandal, The New York Times, Washington Post, Time Magazine, and other publications all said they should have disclosed Gruber’s lucrative contracts if they were aware of the conflict of interest. Dozens of Members of Congress cited Gruber’s work in their floor speeches. The White House pushed Gruber hundreds of times to the press and on its website. While Gruber’s ethical lapses are his own personal and professional issue, the true problem here is that the White House used Gruber and his research as a seemingly unbiased source in support of its unpopular reforms. When Obama wanted to tax middle class health care plans, Gruber defended the tax. When Obama wanted to force people to buy private insurance, Gruber defended the individual mandate. When Obama did not want a public option, Gruber said a public option was not important. When Obama needed to pretend the bill had cost controls, Gruber said it had the greatest cost controls ever. It is simply not right for the White House to cite Gruber’s analysis to illustrate the benefits of the bill they support without disclosing that Gruber is on the government payroll. A biased insider can’t be an unbiased outside observer. But that’s exactly the approach of the Obama Administration, to the tune of $780,000 in tax dollars.
The Obama Administation’s $780,000 “buy-an-economist” scandal threatens to shake the foundation of health care reform. We need to get to the bottom of this.
Sign our petition to Obama: come clean on tax dollars used to pay any other undisclosed contracts.
Where there is smoke- there’s fire. Where there is obfuscation – there is something to hide. Bloomberg’s effort to make the FED disclose firms benefiting from the bailouts is being dragged out by the guilty FED and its chief, Ben Bernanke. This is why we need to pass Paul’s Audit the FED bill post haste. We need to know what’s going on with the FED.
Some dire predictions for private health insurance are here.
WHAT WILL REALLY HAPPEN
A) Oh yes, please look at the 2014 stipulations as well. Employers will ultimately drop their coverage and stop offering it if they employ more than 50 employees. Think about it, they will cut costs significantly in the form of premiums (they will have to pay a $750 fee per employee fee when not offering a plan) and will be able to tell their employees that they have health care available through the government exchange plan. — You don’t think they’ll do it? Right now, most employers pay 1/2 of the health plan costs per employee, just assume that that is $200 a month of a total of $400 a month. The break-even is just at 4 months. Cash strapped employers will absolutely push their employees off into the new plan.
B) Over the course of the next 3 years, people will sue the federal government and it WILL be declared unconstitutional to require a person to enter into a contract with a third party to obtain insurance.B) In that 3 year period, private insurers will have had their business margins slashed and profitability will have been destroyed. With the high court ruling that the health reform act is unconstitutional, we will see a final destruction of these firms as the trend to buy insurance will be broken and good healthy clients will drop policies, while sick folks will retain them.
C) As a result of the court action, the federal government will step in with the only solution – a national health plan that is a one payer system (GOVERNMENT HEALTH PLAN). This will be the only fix as the collapse of private insurance plans will be complete.
It sounds ominous and sounds like a conspiracy doesn’t it? The answer is clearly “YES” it does and guess what, it is all planned. Remember, the administration says they don’t care what gets passed, just as long as it is passed. This is the gateway for the end goal of national health care.
Bottom line? If these predictions are correct, one thing stands out: Stock prices of private health insurers in the US will be toast — it’s a question of exactly when. Long term puts on health insurance providers may be a good bet…
This list provides a brief but we know, incomplete description of the corrupt deals for special treatment of SOME states for their senator’s support of the Obamacare takeover of 17% of the US economy. If these deals are not unconstitutional, we need to amend the constitution so that they are.
The top prosecutors in seven states are probing the constitutionality of a political deal that cut a funding break for Nebraska in order to pass a federal health care reform bill, South Carolina’s attorney general said Tuesday. Attorney General Henry McMaster said he and his counterparts in Alabama, Colorado, Michigan, North Dakota, Texas and Washington state – all Republicans – are jointly taking a look at the deal they’ve dubbed the “Nebraska compromise.” “The Nebraska compromise, which permanently exempts Nebraska from paying Medicaid costs that Texas and all other 49 states must pay, may violate the United States Constitution – as well as other provisions of federal law,” Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott said. McMaster’s move comes at the request of Republican U.S. Sens. Lindsey Graham and Jim DeMint of South Carolina. In a letter to McMaster, Graham singled out the deal to win Nebraska Sen. Ben Nelson’s vote on the massive health care bill the Senate is expected to adopt Thursday. Nelson held out as fellow Democrats worked to get 60 votes to foreclose a GOP filibuster and the bill was amended to shield Nebraska from the expected $45 million annual cost tied to expanding Medicaid programs. “We have serious concerns about the constitutionality of this Nebraska compromise as it results in special treatment for only one state in the nation at the expense of the other 49,” Graham and DeMint wrote. Nebraska wasn’t alone in getting Medicaid breaks. Vermont, Louisiana and Massachusetts also got help with their programs. Along with Texas, officials in Washington, Alabama, Colorado and Michigan confirmed they were working with McMaster. North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem said he wasn’t sure what could be done while the federal legislation remained under debate. Officials in the other states did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Meanwhile on Tuesday, Tennessee’s Republican Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey called for his state’s attorney general to investigate the deal. Ramsey, McMaster and Michigan’s Mike Cox are running for governor in their states. “Whether in the court of law or in the court of public opinion, we must bring an end to this culture of corruption,” McMaster said. The negotiations “on their face appear to be a form of vote buying paid for by taxpayers,” he said. McMaster is encouraging a South Carolina citizen to step forward to sue to challenge the measure if it is signed into law. “We’ll assist anyone to the extent that we’re able,” McMaster said. Also Tuesday, U.S. House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., said Republicans need to stop complaining about deals their colleagues made. “Rather than sitting here and carping about what Nelson got for Nebraska, I would say to my friends on the other side of the aisle: Let’s get together and see what we can get for South Carolina,” Clyburn said. For instance, Clyburn expects states will get more help covering Medicaid expansion costs. Critics say the federal government’s coverage of 91 percent of those future costs will disappear, leaving states with huge holes in their budgets. Clyburn says the legislation the federal share should be 95 percent, with states picking up no more than 5 percent. South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford said the federal legislation is “well intended,” but called it “fundamentally flawed in the same way the stimulus efforts were in that the states and the taxpayers are left footing the bill. “Sanford this spring was the nation’s only governor to take a state legislature to federal and state court to block federal stimulus money…
The Weekly Standard:
The Democrats are irresponsibly and disingenuously claiming that the bill would cost $871 billion over 10 years. But that’s not what the CBO says. Rather, the CBO says that $871 billion would be the costs from 2010 to 2019 for expansions in insurance coverage alone. But less than 2 percent of those “10-year costs” would kick in before the fifth year of that span. In its real first 10 years (2014 to 2023), the CBO says that the bill would cost $1.8 trillion — for insurance coverage expansions alone. Other parts of the bill would cost approximately $700 billion more, bringing the bill’s full 10-year tab to approximately $2.5 trillion — according to the CBO.
In those real first 10 years (2014 to 2023), Americans would have to pay over $1 trillion in additional taxes, over $1 trillion would be siphoned out of Medicare (over $200 billion out of Medicare Advantage alone) and spent on Obamacare, and deficits would rise by over $200 billion. They would rise, that is, unless Congress follows through on the bill’s pledge to cut doctors’ payments under Medicare by 21 percent next year and never raise them back up — which would reduce doctors’ enthusiasm for seeing Medicare patients dramatically.
And what would Americans get in return for this staggering sum? Well, the CBO says that health care premiums would rise, and the Chief Actuary at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services says that the percentage of the Gross Domestic Product spent on health care would rise from 17 percent today to 21 percent by the end of 2019. Nationwide health care costs would be $234 billion higher than under current law. How’s that for “reform”?
Even MoveOn.org says that the bill is “a massive giveaway” to private insurance companies. The CBO estimates that, from 2015-25, private insurers would receive $1.0 trillion in subsidies from the American taxpayer — the insurers’ apparent price for giving up their freedom and being controlled by the government. Congress would mandate that Americans buy the insurers’ product and would redirect massive sums of taxpayer money to make that mandate more feasible. So, if insurance companies are your idea of a worthy object of philanthropy, then Obamacare is for you.
This Obamacare vote is a clear indicator that our country has really taken a turn for the worst. Can we undo this? Can we get these bums out of office now? Any incumbent, Republican or Democrat who voted for any two of these three measures: the .700 trillion TARP, the $.787 trillion Pork Stimulus or the $2.5 trillion Obamacare … should be removed from office.
First Senator Mary Landrieu of Louisiana is bribed with $300 million in pork to support Obamacare, then Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas “suddenly” removes her objections. Lincoln appears to be resigned to being voted out of office and likely has cut a deal to be hired by the Obamunists once she is removed from the Senate. Landrieu is unashamed for taking the bribe for her state, but she should be, and we expect, Louisianians will increasingly be outraged. And what was the bribe Senator Nelson agreed to for Nebraska? Time will reveal this mystery. This also makes us wonder what the going state bribe will be for making Obama President for Life...$500 million, maybe $1 billion? The Obamunists don’t care how much these bribe schemes cost since it’s all newly printed money anyway and a hidden inflation tax on the American public and further, their ideology trumps all public welfare considerations.
Obama’s personal network, ABC, has an interview of Obama in which the president warns that unless we pass his health care reform bill, “the US will go bankrupt”. Well, then we will go doubly bankrupt if we DO pass it – ’cause Federal spending – and the deficit will indeed mushroom if the communist’s Obamacare becomes law. What a lowlife threat. WHEN the US goes bankrupt —we surely do hope Mr. Obama has the lack of a health care bill to blame for it.