Pelosi unveils plan for new taxes, worse health care

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi today unveiled her version of a government-run insurance program filled with numerous tax increases and mandates on individuals and businesses. Essentially an altered version of H.R. 3200, the original Obamacare failure, Pelosi’s bill includes a government-run insurance plan and has been formulated to sound less intrusive than reality would have us believe. It’s called, ironically enough, the “Affordable Health Care for America Act.” I kid you not, they actually believe that if they give the bill a name which sounds good, America will buy it without question. Furthermore, if it is named that, well then it can’t possibly do anything but create affordable health care, right?

It should be called the “Higher Taxes, Lower Quality of Health Care for America Act.”

Listen to the opening monologue from Rush Limbaugh today on Pelosi’s health care bill, I can’t explain this any better. For anyone not a Rush 24/7 member, here’s the audio:

Rush on Pelosi’s Plan

The most absurd part of this legislation is that the tax increases take effect immediately though the actual service part wouldn’t take effect until 2013. What this means is that we have nearly 5 years of paying taxes on it and then 5 years with taxes and service from it so the Democrats say it will produce a surplus in the first 10 years. That math only makes sense in Washington when you are trying to bamboozle the American people into adopting some new failing government program.

From Politico:

The CBO analysis will show that the bill runs surpluses in the first five years and deficits in the second, making it deficit neutral during the first decade. BUT those late decade deficits were raising questions about whether the CBO will be able to declare the second 10 years deficit neutral.

Of course it runs surpluses in the first five years! We’re all paying new taxes on everything and the program hasn’t even started yet!

The other sweeping change is that in the legislation, the “public” or “government” insurance option is now called the “consumer option.” I assume this is because Speaker Pelosi and the Democrats on Capitol Hill assume we, the American people, are really just that stupid.

The details on Pelosi’s new government-option from the New York Times:

WASHINGTON — Under pressure from moderate-to-conservative members of the House Democratic caucus, Speaker Nancy Pelosi has decided to propose a government-run insurance plan that would negotiate rates with doctors and hospitals, rather than using prices set by the government, aides said Wednesday.

Ms. Pelosi said the public plan, which she prefers to call a “consumer option,” would compete with private insurers. But the speaker was apparently unable to muster the votes needed for the “robust” liberal version of a public plan, which she has repeatedly said would save more money for consumers and the government.

Members of the House Democratic leadership team offered these details of their bill, to be unveiled on Thursday. It would provide coverage to 35 million or 36 million people. The 10-year cost of expanding coverage would be less than the $900 billion ceiling suggested by President Obama. The cost would be offset by new taxes and by cutbacks in Medicare, so the bill would not increase the federal budget deficit in the next 10 years or in the decade after that.

The new bill, like an earlier version, retains a surtax on high-income people, but increases the thresholds. The tax would hit married couples with adjusted gross incomes exceeding $1 million a year and individuals over $500,000 — just three-tenths of 1 percent of all households, Democrats said.

Ms. Pelosi can describe the proposal as a “millionaires’ tax.” The original thresholds were $280,000 for individuals and $350,000 for couples.

New taxes during a recession. I’m not sure you could find a better definition of incompetence if you tried.

Another way the bill claims to save money is simply by offloading federal costs onto the states, which many governors will not be pleased with.

Well, it turns out that Pelosi & Co have decided to shift more of those costs onto the state. Earlier versions had people at 133% of the poverty line eligible for Medicaid, the costs of which states largely have to bear. The new version hikes that to 150% of poverty line, forcing more people onto state rolls rather than federal. That allows Pelosi to claim some cost savings, but the public burden felt by taxpayers will increase, thanks to unfunded mandates on the states.

Democrats used to chide President Bush about “unfunded mandates” with regard to the “No Child Left Behind Act” yet now they seem fine with them since they fit into the liberal socialist agenda.

Pelosi’s bill also includes new taxes on medical devices, everything from pacemakers to tampons. If it can be considered a “medical device,” she’s probably taxing it to pay for this new government program destined for failure.

Republicans weighed in on Pelosi’s glorious new tax bill:

Everyone was invited to the unveiling ceremony this morning. That is, if “everyone” included House staffers, union members and Pelosi supporters. The Washington Times reports on the “closed public unveiling“:

House Democrats blocked the public from attending the unveiling ceremony of their health-care bill Thursday morning, allowing only pre-approved visitors whose names appeared on lists to enter the event at the West side of the Capitol.

The audience at the crowded press conference included Hill staffers, union workers, health care providers and students, according to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who thanked them for attending.

Mrs. Pelosi and other Democratic leaders announced the chamber’s long-awaited version of a health care overhaul, which would expand insurance coverage to 36 million uninsured Americans, costing less than $900 billion over 10 years.

The West side of the Capitol – the area where President Barack Obama was inaugurated – is traditionally open to the public. But the entrances were blocked off Thursday morning by metal fences, with Capitol police officers standing next to staff members holding clipboards with lists of approved attendees.

Very nice that a bill which affects the public is closed off to the public when it is heaved upon them. Doesn’t this show the direction we’re heading? Pelosi doesn’t care about what you the American people think, she cares about ramming this agenda through congress and you’re feelings be damned.

Republican Representative Mike Pence was on CNN earlier discussing the Pelosi debacle:

Amen to that, we can improve access to health care without improving the federal government’s access to our wallets.

  • Bill Hedges

    “Everyone was invited to the unveiling ceremony this morning. That is, if “everyone” included House staffers, union members and Pelosi supporters. The Washington Times reports on the “closed public unveiling“:”

    Gee Nate,this is so common place, hardly worth mentioning.
    …..

    “The most absurd part of this legislation is that the tax increases take effect immediately though the actual service part wouldn’t take effect until 2013.”

    How else can they increase taxes to keep American economy afloat and deceive Americans. They will spend this money as they did Social security surplus. Reminds me of ‘wolf in sheep clothing.’ Another old saying ‘honesty is best policy’ is dead.
    …..

    “The other sweeping change is that in the legislation, the “public” or “government” insurance option is now called the “consumer option.” I assume this is because Speaker Pelosi and the Democrats on Capitol Hill assume we, the American people, are really just that stupid.”

    Ahhh but what does “consumer option” mean ??? In interview Obama did not like dictionary definition used against him. I suppose he wishes to define “consumer option.” To our determent. The unknown protects reelection changes ??? Might work ??? Is that the plan ??? …..
    …..

    “Under pressure from moderate-to-conservative members of the House Democratic caucus, Speaker Nancy Pelosi has decided to propose a government-run insurance plan that would negotiate rates with doctors and hospitals, rather than using prices set by the government, aides said Wednesday.”

    And this is set in stone ??? I doubt it.

    I heard a Congressman say private insurers pay 130% for Doctor visits compared to Medicare patient. In other words private subsidizes public now. More so with these new taxes.
    …..

    “Well, it turns out that Pelosi & Co have decided to shift more of those costs onto the state. Earlier versions had people at 133% of the poverty line eligible for Medicaid, the costs of which states largely have to bear. The new version hikes that to 150% of poverty line, forcing more people onto state rolls rather than federal. That allows Pelosi to claim some cost savings, but the public burden felt by taxpayers will increase, thanks to unfunded mandates on the states.”

    Nate are you implying smoking windows here ??? Obama wants $900 billion plan. By god he’s going to get it. They tried $250 billion bill to give Doctors raises. Separate of course from $900 billion plan.

    They will let State legislators take blame. Citizens are stupid. They can justify by calling citizens racist. That will shut them up.

    How disreputable. How dishonest. How Obama…
    …..

    How many truck loads of tongue depressor would our For Fathers dumped into the bay had this been done to them.

  • JD

    I think we should all cower in a dark corner and wait for the world to collapse. I mean the sky is falling right?

  • JD, your oblivious attitude toward increasing government control and intrusiveness into your life and the lives of others is sad.

    If our freedoms and liberties depended on people like you, we’d have no hope whatsoever.

    I have empathy for those, like yourself, who can’t appreciate what they have until it is gone. I simply ask that you try to become more informed about the liberties you’re going to lose before you surrender them on the whim of a sarcastic remark.

  • Bill Hedges

    No JD, the sky is not falling for me.

    You said sky is falling. I feel your pain.

  • Bill Hedges

    “Ford surprises with $1B profit; sees profit in ’11”

    By TOM KRISHER and DEE-ANN DURBIN, AP Auto Writers Tom Krisher And Dee-ann Durbin, Ap Auto Writers – 2 mins ago

    DEARBORN, Mich. – “Ford, the only Detroit automaker to dodge direct government aid and bankruptcy court, surprised investors with net income of nearly $1 billion in the third quarter and forecast a “solidly profitable” 2011.”

    “The automaker said Monday earnings were fueled by U.S. market share gains, cost cuts and the Cash for Clunkers program, which drew flocks of buyers to showrooms this summer. Ford’s shares rose 58 cents, or 8.3 percent, to $7.58 in pre-market trading.”

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20091102/ap_on_bi_ge/us_earns_ford

    Some dude in obama administration said something to affect don’t waste a recession.

    Well no bail out for Ford. Yes junkie subsidy helped them but all, even foreign cars, had chance at that pie.

    So way to go Ford. Capitalism works.

  • JD

    Thanks Nate, I have taken some time to think about my liberties and i have come to the realization that I don’t like leaving my health to the private sector who seeks only to make a profit at my expence.

    If that is what you call liberty than I don’t want it. I can vote for my government and I can be a part of my government but I can do niether to the Healthcare giants.

    Government can get involved for the good of the poeple… it is the same government that put police to work, fire protection in place, took on the task of attempting to educate thier citizens, and built the infastracture of raods that the private industry uses daily to get business done.

    Hey I believe in survival of the fittest. I say we give you the option to Opt out of all this government help so when your house burns or you need healthcare at 60 none will be provided and that population of idiots will be eliminated.

  • Bill Hedges

    lib·er·ty (lbr-t)
    n. pl. lib·er·ties
    1.
    a. The condition of being free from restriction or control.
    b. The right and power to act, believe, or express oneself in a manner of one’s own choosing.
    c. The condition of being physically and legally free from confinement, servitude, or forced labor. See Synonyms at freedom.
    2. Freedom from unjust or undue governmental control.
    3. A right or immunity to engage in certain actions without control or interference: the liberties protected by the Bill of Rights.
    4.
    a. A breach or overstepping of propriety or social convention. Often used in the plural.
    b. A statement, attitude, or action not warranted by conditions or actualities: a historical novel that takes liberties with chronology.
    c. An unwarranted risk; a chance: took foolish liberties on the ski slopes.
    5. A period, usually short, during which a sailor is authorized to go ashore.
    Idiom:
    at liberty
    1. Not in confinement or under constraint; free.
    2. Not employed, occupied, or in use.

    http://www.thefreedictionary.com/liberty
    ……………………………………………………

    1. By liberty, or lack there of, we shall be fined if our choice is not to purchase. That is not liberty.

    2. Is my understanding you have no right to high deductible. That is not liberty.

    3. My private insurance will be higher to pay for public option which appears there will be. This is not liberty.

    4. I must pay for health care non-exist until 2013-2015. Seems my liberties are violated.

    There are more, maybe Nate will throw in his two cents in.
    …..

    ” I don’t like leaving my health to the private sector who seeks only to make a profit at my expence.”

    You need to check, there are non-for-profit health care now.
    …..

    “If that is what you call liberty than I don’t want it. I can vote for my government and I can be a part of my government but I can do niether to the Healthcare giants.”

    Well you don’t live in France or Cuba. By living here you live in perhaps the strongest economy Nation in the world. Because of capitalism. If this plan fails we will miss you when/if you move.

    NAME THE COUNTRY OR STATE THAT HAS PUBLIC HEALTH CARE THAT IS BETTER THAN OURS. I await your non-response ???

    Closest in America Is Maine I believe. And they are doing porly. England and Canada are deep in debt, rationing, and long lines even for cancer treatment. Including States that have public plans.

    “Government can get involved for the good of the poeple… it is the same government that put police to work, fire protection in place, took on the task of attempting to educate thier citizens, and built the infastracture of raods that the private industry uses daily to get business done.”

    Glad you brought that up. What you said sounds like a winner, but:

    Jails are being privatized to save money. I believe there are contract police officers as well.

    Education, a pilot program in DC had better scores and cheaper than public. Maybe fact teacher unions supported obama was cancelled, anyhow obama discontinued program.

    Roads, there again private has been assigned to that to.

    Once last point, Canada has begun going to private.

    Sweden to I believe.
    …..
    “Hey I believe in survival of the fittest. I say we give you the option to Opt out of all this government help so when your house burns or you need healthcare at 60 none will be provided and that population of idiots will be eliminated.”

    When face with logic and evidence, Jd just can’t hack it and must get illogical and nasty.

    All or nothing, right Jd. Well that was the case in 1776. We will have our revolt in 2010 vote. If Congress ignores the polls, new faces will repeal. You see majority, as seen by polls disagree with you. By rights majority rules. At voting time.

    Call it the second Newt Revolution.

  • JD,

    Amen Brother! 🙂

  • Bill Hedges

    “Health Care Reform”
    “42% Support Health Care Reform After Release of Pelosi’s Version”

    Monday, November 02, 2009

    “The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 42% now favor the health care plan proposed by President Obama and congressional Democrats. That’s down from 45% a week ago but unchanged from two weeks ago.”

    http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/current_events/healthcare/september_2009/health_care_reform

  • Bill Hedges

    AP sources: House health bill totals $1.2 trillion
    ?
    By DAVID ESPO, AP Special Correspondent David Espo, Ap Special Correspondent – 8 mins ago

    WASHINGTON – “The health care bill headed for a vote in the House this week costs $1.2 trillion or more over a decade, according to numerous Democratic officials and figures contained in an analysis by congressional budget experts, far higher than the $900 billion cited by President Barack Obama as a price tag for his reform plan.”

    “While the Congressional Budget Office has put the cost of expanding coverage in the legislation at roughly $1 trillion, Democrats added billions more on higher spending for public health, a reinsurance program to hold down retiree health costs, payments for preventive services and more.”

    “House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has referred repeatedly to the bill’s net cost of $894 billion over a decade for coverage.”

    “The bill includes an option for a government-run health plan.”

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20091103/ap_on_bi_ge/us_health_care_overhaul

  • Bill Hedges

    NOVEMBER 1, 2009, 11:23 P.M. ET

    “The Worst Bill Ever”

    “Epic new spending and taxes, pricier insurance, rationed care, dishonest accounting: The Pelosi health bill has it all.”

    “Speaker Nancy Pelosi has reportedly told fellow Democrats that she’s prepared to lose seats in 2010 if that’s what it takes to pass ObamaCare, and little wonder. The health bill she unwrapped last Thursday, which President Obama hailed as a “critical milestone,” may well be the worst piece of post-New Deal legislation ever introduced.”

    “In a rational political world, this 1,990-page runaway train would have been derailed months ago. With spending and debt already at record peacetime levels, the bill creates a new and probably unrepealable middle-class entitlement that is designed to expand over time. Taxes will need to rise precipitously, even as ObamaCare so dramatically expands government control of health care that eventually all medicine will be rationed via politics.”

    “Yet at this point, Democrats have dumped any pretense of genuine bipartisan “reform” and moved into the realm of pure power politics as they race against the unpopularity of their own agenda. The goal is to ram through whatever income-redistribution scheme they can claim to be “universal coverage.” The result will be destructive on every level—for the health-care system, for the country’s fiscal condition, and ultimately for American freedom and prosperity.”

    “Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.”

    “•The spending surge. The Congressional Budget Office figures the House program will cost $1.055 trillion over a decade, which while far above the $829 billion net cost that Mrs. Pelosi fed to credulous reporters is still a low-ball estimate. Most of the money goes into government-run “exchanges” where people earning between 150% and 400% of the poverty level—that is, up to about $96,000 for a family of four in 2016—could buy coverage at heavily subsidized rates, tied to income. The government would pay for 93% of insurance costs for a family making $42,000, 72% for another making $78,000, and so forth.”

    “At least at first, these benefits would be offered only to those whose employers don’t provide insurance or work for small businesses with 100 or fewer workers. The taxpayer costs would be far higher if not for this “firewall”—which is sure to cave in when people see the deal their neighbors are getting on “free” health care. Mrs. Pelosi knows this, like everyone else in Washington.”

    “Even so, the House disguises hundreds of billions of dollars in additional costs with budget gimmicks. It “pays for” about six years of program with a decade of revenue, with the heaviest costs concentrated in the second five years. The House also pretends Medicare payments to doctors will be cut by 21.5% next year and deeper after that, “saving” about $250 billion. ObamaCare will be lucky to cost under $2 trillion over 10 years; it will grow more after that.”

    “• Expanding Medicaid, gutting private Medicare. All this is particularly reckless given the unfunded liabilities of Medicare—now north of $37 trillion over 75 years. Mrs. Pelosi wants to steal $426 billion from future Medicare spending to “pay for” universal coverage. While Medicare’s price controls on doctors and hospitals are certain to be tightened, the only cut that is a sure thing in practice is gutting Medicare Advantage to the tune of $170 billion. Democrats loathe this program because it gives one of out five seniors private insurance options.”

    “As for Medicaid, the House will expand eligibility to everyone below 150% of the poverty level, meaning that some 15 million new people will be added to the rolls as private insurance gets crowded out at a cost of $425 billion. A decade from now more than a quarter of the population will be on a program originally intended for poor women, children and the disabled.”

    “Even though the House will assume 91% of the “matching rate” for this joint state-federal program—up from today’s 57%—governors would still be forced to take on $34 billion in new burdens when budgets from Albany to Sacramento are in fiscal collapse. Washington’s budget will collapse too, if anything like the House bill passes.”

    “• European levels of taxation. All told, the House favors $572 billion in new taxes, mostly by imposing a 5.4-percentage-point “surcharge” on joint filers earning over $1 million, $500,000 for singles. This tax will raise the top marginal rate to 45% in 2011 from 39.6% when the Bush tax cuts expire—not counting state income taxes and the phase-out of certain deductions and exemptions. The burden will mostly fall on the small businesses that have organized as Subchapter S or limited liability corporations, since the truly wealthy won’t have any difficulty sheltering their incomes.”

    “This surtax could hit ever more earners because, like the alternative minimum tax, it isn’t indexed for inflation. Yet it still won’t be nearly enough. Even if Congress had confiscated 100% of the taxable income of people earning over $500,000 in the boom year of 2006, it would have only raised $1.3 trillion. When Democrats end up soaking the middle class, perhaps via the European-style value-added tax that Mrs. Pelosi has endorsed, they’ll claim the deficits that they created made them do it.”

    “Under another new tax, businesses would have to surrender 8% of their payroll to government if they don’t offer insurance or pay at least 72.5% of their workers’ premiums, which eat into wages. Such “play or pay” taxes always become “pay or pay” and will rise over time, with severe consequences for hiring, job creation and ultimately growth. While the U.S. already has one of the highest corporate income tax rates in the world, Democrats are on the way to creating a high structural unemployment rate, much as Europe has done by expanding its welfare states.”

    “Meanwhile, a tax equal to 2.5% of adjusted gross income will also be imposed on some 18 million people who CBO expects still won’t buy insurance in 2019. Democrats could make this penalty even higher, but that is politically unacceptable, or they could make the subsidies even higher, but that would expose the (already ludicrous) illusion that ObamaCare will reduce the deficit.”

    “• The insurance takeover. A new “health choices commissioner” will decide what counts as “essential benefits,” which all insurers will have to offer as first-dollar coverage. Private insurers will also be told how much they are allowed to charge even as they will have to offer coverage at virtually the same price to anyone who applies, regardless of health status or medical history.”

    “The cost of insurance, naturally, will skyrocket. The insurer WellPoint estimates based on its own market data that some premiums in the individual market will triple under these new burdens. The same is likely to prove true for the employer-sponsored plans that provide private coverage to about 177 million people today. Over time, the new mandates will apply to all contracts, including for the large businesses currently given a safe harbor from bureaucratic tampering under a 1974 law called Erisa.”

    “The political incentive will always be for government to expand benefits and reduce cost-sharing, trampling any chance of giving individuals financial incentives to economize on care. Essentially, all insurers will become government contractors, in the business of fulfilling political demands: There will be no such thing as “private” health insurance.”

    ***
    “All of this is intentional, even if it isn’t explicitly acknowledged. The overriding liberal ambition is to finish the work began decades ago as the Great Society of converting health care into a government responsibility. Mr. Obama’s own Medicare actuaries estimate that the federal share of U.S. health dollars will quickly climb beyond 60% from 46% today. One reason Mrs. Pelosi has fought so ferociously against her own Blue Dog colleagues to include at least a scaled-back “public option” entitlement program is so that the architecture is in place for future Congresses to expand this share even further.”

    “As Congress’s balance sheet drowns in trillions of dollars in new obligations, the political system will have no choice but to start making cost-minded decisions about which treatments patients are allowed to receive. Democrats can’t regulate their way out of the reality that we live in a world of finite resources and infinite wants. Once health care is nationalized, or mostly nationalized, medical rationing is inevitable—especially for the innovative high-cost technologies and drugs that are the future of medicine.”

    “Mr. Obama rode into office on a wave of “change,” but we doubt most voters realized that the change Democrats had in mind was making health care even more expensive and rigid than the status quo. Critics will say we are exaggerating, but we believe it is no stretch to say that Mrs. Pelosi’s handiwork ranks with the Smoot-Hawley tariff and FDR’s National Industrial Recovery Act as among the worst bills Congress has ever seriously contemplated.”

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703399204574505423751140690.html