Health Care Bill – Senate Finance Committee and the Republican Vote

October 15, 2009

By Padmini Arhant

The decision by the Maine Senator, Olympia Snowe to get on board in the health care reform is a welcome change and provides hope for the bipartisanship even with a singular vote now.

It would have been a cause for celebration if the bill did not marginalize the purpose of this health care reform i.e. the public option that is no longer an option but a necessity for millions of people and small businesses worst hit in the national crisis.

The misplaced objective of this bill from the start has been to impress the ‘so-called’ fiscal conservatives squandering the national wealth on warfare resulting in massive casualties while being miserly on matter related to saving life.

Since the opposition maintains the tradition to oppose anything offered by the democrats, it is no surprise to view the conservative support to the health insurance industry dedicated to sabotage the health care reform by any means.

The onus is entirely on the Democratic majority specifically elected to deliver the long overdue ‘change’ urgently needed to improve the life of all Americans.

With the mid-term elections around the corner, the voter frustration is enormous and cannot possibly prolong if the representatives in a democracy do not meet the essential voter requirements in health care and other issues. To be more specific, the health care bill from the Senate will be meaningless without a ‘public option.’

National deficit is a major concern for citizens with basic economic sense, despite the issue being hailed as the ‘conservative’ and ‘moderate’ economic prudence from both sides of the aisle. The neglected element in this context is the reverse motion by the centrists and the conservatives that is predominantly driving the costs faster than a bullet train.

The identifiable costs are the unaffordable insurance premiums, unnecessary diagnostic procedures to avoid malpractice litigations, unhealthy lifestyle by a large segment of the population and uncontrolled administrative expenditure ultimately passed on to the consumers across the economic spectrum.

The costs factor cleverly evaded through pointed accusations against the ‘government’ intervention and the people, the victims in the sensitive life and death matter.

Even if the current Senate Finance Committee bill supposedly addresses all of the problems contributing to the status quo, the average and the gainfully employed citizens still faced with a challenge due to the mandatory insurance purchase that demands a massive search for the most competitive provider available only during the novelty period. Once the storm settles, it’s guaranteed to be ‘business as usual.’

Therefore, it’s absolutely important for the democratic lawmakers being the majority to ensure that the public option is included in both the House and the Senate bill.

The Senate Finance Committee bill currently accepted as a huge achievement in the absence of the ‘public option.’ Although, the legislature in itself is a cornerstone compared to the health care reform demolition during the Clinton presidency, the legislation passed merely to satisfy the haphazard objective without taking into account the plight of the citizens.’

In terms of the malpractice litigations, the truth lies somewhere in between with the victims being the providers and the public. The misdiagnosis or negligence during the surgical procedures does exist in the twenty first century in spite of the state of the art technology and medical training in the United States. The competent and self-assured professionals need not be overly concerned as the incidents are prevalent among those lacking in this regard.

For instance, not long ago the mastectomy performed on the twenty three year old patient in error resulting from the misreading /swapping of the patients’ record. On a personal account in California, a surgical metal object left behind during the foot surgery causing excruciating pain for a prolonged eighteen months, eventually spotted by a different provider via x-ray and removed through another surgery.

On the other hand, some public members view such experience as an opportunity for financial gains and pursue unmitigated lawsuits forcing the providers to rely upon the expensive malpractice insurance as a safety net. The health care reform cannot play much role in this particular issue.

Instead, the conspicuously flawed legal system requires a major overhauling in the social justice matters and hence taken advantage of by the favored party in the general framework. The justice system should focus less on the economics and more on ethics and morality.

Nevertheless, there is a cost concern in this avoidable dispute leading to the premium hikes, and health care fees inevitably borne by the mainstream public.

Any behind the scenes effort by the legislators under the special interests influence, to derail the health care legislation entirely or partially without a public option would be a political suicide for them given the public expectations based on their daily harrowing experience in the present profit oriented system.

The health care reform is a political gamble for both parties in the coming 2010 elections. With the Republican lawmakers, pledging abstinence over action on the life matter will further reduce their representations in both Houses of the Congress. Similarly, the Democrats as a majority have not demonstrated unity within or delivered the desired results in the health care legislation.

Such fiasco is detrimental to both parties with the public anger and frustration building up to the point of no return.

There is enormous responsibility on the Senate majority leader Harry Reid to comply with the public concern rather than attempting to appease the unwinnable votes in the senate.

After all, at the end of the day even if the ‘special interests’ fund the political campaigns, the ballots determine the power for the candidate and the party.

Perhaps, the lobbyists could convince their representatives in Congress that they have the means to drive political campaigns to support the partisan agenda and encourage the lawmakers to remain loyal to them and not the public. Undoubtedly, the strategy was a huge success up until the recent past, but not anymore as the economic woes created by the same lobbyists’ politics emboldened the mass to hold the elected officials accountable for their actions or the lack there of in all matter.

Demanding accountability and transparency from the authorities with power in the government, corporations and the military are the only effective instruments at the public disposal to bring about the desired change in their life.

Collective public voice and action desperately required to attain the desirable goals in the respective economic, social, political and environmental cause.

Finally, the end-result in the health care reform cannot deprive the suffering millions of population from salvation through the government run public option. No possible explanations from the Senate or the House could justify the inability to incorporate the only effective reform tool, the public option for the health care legislation to qualify as historic or a monumental feat.

Thank you.

Padmini Arhant

Health Care Resolution – Clarification

August 17, 2009

By Padmini Arhant

Ever since the health care debate started, the main objective among the visible opponents has been to fictionalize the various contents of the bill. The health care bill principles – costs, quality and affordability extensively discussed per blogpost ‘Health Care Reform’ July 11, 2009 on this website.

Several testimonials by citizens from all walks of life through various mediums confirmed the urgency for health care reform. The partisan politics continues to disparage the millions of people deprived of proper health care during the public discourse.

A sensitive national matter turned into a controversial subject by the special interests’ agents. The health care bill described as voluminous, inadequate and far-fetched in reference to the government plan or public option. On the other hand, the noise amazingly disappeared with the White House statement on the possible elimination of the government plan from the competition.

Hence, the overview of the health care funding and the actual role of government plan in the health care legislation vital for true perspective.

How is the government health care funded?

The health care funded through three main categories –

First, by reducing wasteful spending and redundant costs prevalent in the ‘all private run’ system at the moment, a liability transferred on to the Corporations providing insurance, small businesses and individual insurance subscribers by the Health Insurance industry.

Trimmings guaranteed to generate the required savings to a tune of $300-$450 billion, the major portion of it stemming from out-of-court settlements in health care lawsuits, rising costs in malpractice insurance, neglecting preventive care, excessive intervention by the insurance companies with pre-authorization and final authorizations…contributing to a chaotic structure of the huge public system.

Next, streamlining the Health Care industry’s disproportionate costs across the wide spectrum of health care services to fund the program. It’s essential to emphasize that no one is against profit in either private run or hybrid systems. However, profit set to bankrupt the economy and the consumers in the form of businesses and individuals is equivalent to driving blindfolded on a one-way street with a dead end.

Unless and until the health care industry profit margin is reasonable, even the Health Insurance industry objectionable to the government involvement cannot sustain the escalating costs factored with exorbitant mark-ups by the health care complex.

The common problem for both private health insurance and the government plan is the costs incurred in the health care provision – health care professional fees, hospital admissions, treatment, drugs and ancillary services.

In order to keep up with the ever increasing health care industry costs, the health insurance competes with the counterpart by selling unaffordable insurance resulting in the estimated fifty million uninsured as well as cutting corners by denying adequate and quality coverage to the remaining dissatisfied insured population. Even though, the propaganda negates the fact claiming the satisfied insured population at 80%.

The health care and health insurance might appear to be in cohort when they really are at odds against each other in the excessive profit oriented scheme. There has been a rebuttal on this ‘profit’ issue by the health care spokespersons, some even resorting to name-callings as the line of defense.

An elaborate explanation was provided via Op-ed, Washington Post, July 2009-

How the reigning in on profit in a free market system would drive the economy to pitfalls.

What was not included in the explanation is the attempt to derive limitless profit at the expense of a vast majority in a sector that would naturally enable the expected returns given the volume based health industry. Similar to the energy sector surviving and thriving in any economy.

Another example for that matter, the world’s manufacturing warehouse, China ending in trade surplus with the rock bottom price due to worldwide mass production.

Regardless of the government plan, the health insurance industry cannot keep its promise to the changes required in the system without the cooperation from the health care industry. In a way, the government plan would ease the burden on the health insurance industry by negotiating with the health care industry via legislation. So, instead of viewing the government or the public option as an obstacle, the health insurance should envisage positive outcome from the hybrid system.

Third, tax increases on the taxpayers with extraordinary income configured in the earlier bill by the House of Congress to supplement health care funding is the prudent path to economic recovery that is excoriating the national revenue from other sectors. It could very well be a short-term pain evolving into long-term healing process.

The emotional outbursts with claims “I want to take my America back from Obama” revolves around the fear and commotion created by the veterans of smear tactics and the infamous ‘swift boat’ campaigners emerging during national elections, illegal wars and all things against national progress.

Ironically, the skepticism and cynicism about public option or a robust government plan for the benefit of the national economy and health in the near future overshadow the crisis in the present health care system.

One might call it a potent weapon by the opponents of the national interests suppressing the anomalies of the exclusive private run enterprise that is proven catastrophic to the overall economy and the general population.

Thus far, in all the town hall meetings organized to address the ‘legitimate’ concerns and queries from the victims of the present health care conglomerate watered down with the negatively charged combative remarks, cleverly pushing the pro-reform legislators on the defense.

Did the opponents gain from the anti-national movement?

Maybe for the time being but only soon to realize that such back alley ambush has its own ramifications that should not be underestimated.

As stated earlier, it’s about time the medical industrial complex and their representatives in the Senate and the House against the public option or the government plan get off the offense and provide believable answers to the simple yet direct questions:

The contentious issue in the health care legislation is the government plan or the public option.

Considering that, the contemporary health care system is exclusively private run with the exception of Medicare and Medicaid,

1. Why is the nation left behind with a staggering fifty million population uninsured, if the free market has enough competitors to lower the price?

The correct response: It’s because there is no real or a formidable challenger up to the task of dealing with the monopoly in the system and the non-profit cooperatives will be a fly that would be swatted down by the big players even before it begins to buzz around.

2. Why are the insured population forced to reach out to overseas health care facilities, under the apparently fabulous health care system certified by the ‘special interests rewarded’ representatives in the Senate and the House?

Quote – Wall Street Journal – Extensive 2008 editorial and articles – “South Asia, a popular destination for American patients awaiting transplants and various treatment care involving hospitalizations.”

Response: Health care industry’s phenomenal profit driven costs is triggering the health insurance industry to subsidize quality and appropriate treatment necessary but flatly denied to the ailing population. Further, the pre-authorization and final authorization protocols from the private health insurers applicable on healthy and pre-disposed health patients arising from the lack of trust by the insurance industry against the health care industry cause the exodus of the suffering population to foreign locations, not to mention the loss of income to the state and the national economy.

3. Why is the infant mortality and uninsured dependents in the lower income families, elderly care in terms of drug costs to name a few issues, so high under the ‘supposedly’ caring and affordable health care system?

Response: The health insurance and the health care industry policy designed for the healthy and the wealthy minority, rather than the underprivileged and the unfortunate majority.

4. The assertion that government plan dependent upon costs reduction from the health care industry only to be evaded by the health care providers held against the public option entry.

On similar assumption, What is the insurance industry proposal to alleviate the costs to make it affordable for all Americans?

Is the health insurance industry more influential over the health care providers?

In that case, what are they waiting for and why can’t they demonstrate their ability to improve the conditions now, i.e. (if they recognize that there is a systemic problem) to include all in the present system that would benefit the stagnant economy as well.

Alternatively, Does the health insurance possess a unique charm that would mesmerize the health care proponents to agree with the Insurance Industry demands?

One would assume that if it works for one, why it shouldn’t work for another.

Response: Both health care and health insurance industry common goal is to appease their shareholders with handsome returns and will stretch any limits with the consumer as the sacrificial lamb in the expansive, unmitigated health care arena.

5. The Congressmen and Women not in favor of public option, but probably supportive of non-profit cooperative system, is obligatory to their constituents and the entire nation to come forward in a town hall meeting or comparable setting,

To lay out their presumably efficient ‘free market’ operation predicted to create a utopian environment apart from setting precedence for other industrialized nations with hybrid health care systems.

Considering the unanimous consensus that the health care system due for modifications,

It would be fair and justified to call on the health care, the health insurance industry and their representatives in Congress responsible for the stalemate to present the facts and figures to the American consumers and taxpayers in their pledge to clean up the mess in the national health care.

In this context, the activism from the health care professionals seemingly frustrated with the insurance industry dictating terms and conditions in patient care disappointingly missing in action.

The other issue raised by the industry and their agents is – Why is the health care reform a priority and what is the need to rush on the issue?

Response: The economy and the plight of the suffering population speak volume in this regard. Failure to resuscitate the ailing heart would lead to fatality, evidenced in the victims’ real experiences.

In a nutshell, the nation has had enough with the shenanigans from the opponents of the national health care reform who have neither any treatment nor cure to the national epidemic called the health care that is aptly the health nightmare for the sane majority.

To reiterate, Health care is not a privilege or an entitlement but a necessity for survival.

Therefore, targeting higher profit against the market reality directly affecting the economy is not a smart business strategy, besides being beyond the realm of ethics and economics.

The proof of the pudding is in the status quo.

If the industries and their agents cannot resolve the matter effectively through cooperation, the obstinacy reflects the national decimation policy.

Finally, Health care reform is meaningless without government plan or public option.

Thank you.
Padmini Arhant

Health Care Resolution

August 16, 2009

By Padmini Arhant

Health Care reform without public option is maintaining the status quo.

All those Americans who consider themselves in the human category, with deep love and compassion for themselves and their loved ones must rise against the ‘opposition’ tidal wave and stop this shenanigan now.

This will be just the beginning for the special interests and the political opponents to reign in on the national progress and achieve their dubious plan to continue with the profiteering racket at the expense of all those they consider weak and vulnerable.

America cannot give up on this unique opportunity to do what is right for the millions of people anxiously hoping for their release from the shackles of the Insurance and health care industry that has always prioritized profits over the health of the people.

It’s time to challenge the Health Insurance, Health care industry and their paid agents as this battle has taken an ugly turn for the worst outcome only allowing the partisan politics and demagoguery to prevail against national progress.

More details on the way with questions directed at the mighty industry and their political representatives responsible for the unacceptable showdown in every town hall meeting that simply reflects the anti-American cause smothered in ignorance and recalcitrant behavior.

Please stand by for further presentation shortly.

Thank you for your patience.

Padmini Arhant

Revolt against Health Care Reform Politics

August 6, 2009

By Padmini Arhant

Here we go again! To quote the former President Ronald Reagan revered by the political faction on the right, the obstructionists rise against health care reform under the guise of ‘fiscal governance’ with the stagecraft artists as citizens screaming and ranting over the health care policy for all.

Should anyone be surprised about the sources responsible for the spectacle at the town hall meetings?

When the propagandists can’t think for themselves, they often lavishly steal ideas from others and misuse the Gandhian principle of non-violence and peaceful protest discussed earlier for their own diabolical means, despite the action being detrimental to national progress.

Surely, Gandhi will be turning in his grave on the abuse of his noble wisdom…at the narcissistic profiteers in the health care industry using the selective media muscle power drive insanity to no point of return.

Out of sight, out of mind and the opposition goes ballistic to stampede the health care legislation.

The noise and raucous in the public arena instigated by the agents of warfare against welfare of the people in a democracy are leaving no stones unturned for their vile personal agenda i.e. dominate and deploy the destructive forces in health care matter directly related to economic and employment recovery.

Amazing passion displayed by the representatives interestingly missing in action during the pivotal moment of American economic down slide circa 2000 – 2008, now suddenly emerging out of woods to salvage the nation from the alleged danger zone initially created by the oligarchs and the great intellectual minds of the fiscal conservatism.

What America needs to recognize is the reality of the exclusive private health care management rather mismanagement that has bankrupted every citizen and the entire nation. Please refer to numerous facts based articles on the website explaining why America should address the contemporary nightmare called the ‘health care.’

If the health care system is so magnificent as propagated by the hired appointees of the health care industry, then why are there many infants, children, youth, middle aged and elderly alike left in the lurch by the trillion dollar health industry that thrives on the sick and the dead ones negotiating people’s life over their personal luxury?

It’s no longer the majority or minority issue as the Republican motto to push and personalize legislations into a political vendetta is the norm and frankly successful thus far.

Regardless of the democratic majority in Congress, both the House and the Senate, the conservatism in the Republican minority and the Democratic Party viz. the Blue Dogs, prevails in the demagoguery aimed at self-promotion guaranteed with health industry funding.

How does the (GOP) Grand Obstructionists Party maintain political edge over democratic doers?

By simply abusing the legislative and Presidential power. With the democratic majority in Congress, their Republican President George W. Bush although nicknamed “the lame duck” President excessively exercised the veto power and proved the Congress the sitting duck. Likewise, the legislative Republican minority boycott national interests substituting betrayal of their constituents’ trust with cronyism to the campaign financiers.

However, not anymore, the ammunition is bound to exhaust firepower after some time. The United States of America held hostage for too long by the failed ideologies of the far right and certain media miscreants indulging in the national disaster at all costs and anti-health care legislation is the classic example.

Yet another irony is, they proclaim to be patriots and relentlessly engaged in grandstanding the President’s genuine effort to revive the economy and job growth, the foremost concern and requirement of every American family, small businesses and large corporations. Without the major health care overhaul and the release of the national health from the shackles of the health industry’s profit over patients’ policy, it’s impossible for any hard working American to gain financial freedom.

Therefore, this message is directed at all those citizens tired of ‘politics and business as usual’ to reject the conservative political fanaticism fueled by the Corporate investment flourishing through exploitative tactics in the present health care system more appropriately the mismanaged private health DEBACLE in human history.

If each and every one of you out there, a caring, compassionate and cost conscious citizen in favor of national rescue from the ailing economy, the sluggish stock market and the severely hit employment sector, pledge your solidarity and support to President Obama then,

We can absolutely defeat the monstrous attacks on the monumental health care legislation providing choice, quality and affordability with or without conservative backing.

Peaceful, non-violent measures targeting the grassroots supporters at all levels and encouraging the legislators to move forward with the health care reform must be the citizens’ goal in proving people power against partisan politics.

Effective immediately, display your prowess in the health care battle by jamming the cyberspace via twitter, text, phonecall, rally and rock the movement on the streets, with your loud and clear voice confirming democratic vote for health care reform.

The time has arrived to save yourself and your loved ones from the deadly virus containing deceit and lies by the health industry’s special interests and their paid loyalists.

Take control of your life by not letting the lobbyists run you over on the health care epidemic crippling our economy and the people.

Where there is a will, there is a way as ‘impossible’ exists in fool’s dictionary.

We will do it with poise and peaceful means. Now is the time to replace the conservative propaganda machine with collective progressive action.

You want to be a silent sacrificial lamb or a roaring lion to take back America from the clutches of corporate funded conservative catastrophe.

Come on; demonstrate that people awakened by the woes of private health care system refuse to surrender to the health care/insurance industry and their minority political mannequins in Congress.

Yes We Can / Si Se puede and We Will pass People’s Health Care Legislation with public option that ensures ‘mass protection’ and not mass deception under the status quo.

Thank you.

Padmini Arhant

P.S. Don’t miss the comments by the duty bound citizens listing the Republicans up for re-election in 2010 election in the article titled “Mobilize America for Health Care Reform.” With the conservative democrats – oust the stallers and bring in the movers. Please take necessary action strongly recommended to free the great nation, United States of America from political stranglehold.