More private insurers to hop on Obamacare gravy train

by Kate Randall, from the WSWS

A number of private insurance companies that have not yet sold policies on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) exchanges plan to do so in the coming year. The reason is simple: the health care overhaul popularly known as Obamacare offers a virtually risk-free opportunity for insurers to increase their profits.

Insurance giants such as UnitedHealth Group and Cigna, as well as smaller companies, plan to enter the Obamacare market in 2015 and beyond. “Insurers continue to see this as a good business opportunity,” Larry Levitt of the Kaiser Family Foundation told the New York Times. “They see it as an attractive market, with enrollment expected to ramp up in the second year.”

The ACA was designed from the start as a pro-corporate piece of legislation, boosting the bottom line of the insurance industry. The law’s core component, the so-called individual mandate, requires those without insurance from a government program such as Medicare or Medicaid to purchase coverage from a private insurer in the Obamacare “marketplace” or pay a penalty.

New changes to the legislation by the Obama administration virtually guarantee the insurance companies that any dent in their profits will be offset by a complex system of government funds. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has assured the private insurers that ACA mechanisms already in place will be made fully available to them, if need be at taxpayer expense.

The tweaks were buried in ACA regulations issued late last month and reported May 21 by the Los Angeles Times. Adjustments to key provisions of the legislation, largely unreported in the press, will potentially make billions of additional taxpayer dollars available to the insurance companies if they lose money on the exchanges.

[read more here]

Real Danger of “Obamacare”: Insurance Company Takeover of Health Care

by Naomi Pins

Election rhetoric shuns the big picture in favor of the bigger platitude. Now that The Show is over, we are left with the equivalent of a Sunday morning hangover following a binge of promises and lies. We leave the theatre of political spectacle on steroids for the real world of unstable economy, a globally and publicly subsidized financial sector, and increased costs of living on everything from food to education to health-care; outpacing declining median incomes. The average cost for health insurance for a family is $15,745 per year vs. a median income of $50,502, or about half post-tax take-home pay.

“Obamacare” is the name commonly used for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) of 2010. The very moniker is indicative of how name-and-image-centric our world has become; Medicare was never called “Johnsoncare” when President Johnson signed it into law in 1965 and Johnson was not exactly a man of small-personality. At any rate, Obamacare or the PPACA ranks as one of the most misrepresented issues from the campaign, by both sides of the ever-slimming aisle.

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Supreme Follies

by Scott Creighton

Just a quick note: In a few hours the Supreme Court is going to release it’s decision on the Obamacare (aka the ironically named “Affordable” Care Act) lawsuits brought by 26 different states. I won’t be here when the verdict is released so I will go out on a limb and make a little prediction… the court will support the mandate as “constitutional” but will strike several aspects of the bill as unconstitutional, namely the part that mandates corporations offer coverage to people with pre-existing conditions and the part that keeps them from charging more from elderly MANDATED “customers” (are we really “customers” if we are forced to purchase their deeply flawed insurance scams?). They will do this because to them it is constitutional to force human citizens to buy a flawed product from a corporation but it is unconstitutional to force corporate persons to treat human citizens in a just manner. Plus, there is just WAAAAAY too much money at stake (for those of you who don’t know… MOST of the industrialized Western nations have a single payer type healthcare system and the big insurance companies have EVERY INTENTION of exporting our system and thus striking this down not only hurts their profits here but also in the future all across the world. Just think about those payment premium profit margins for a second. think about it… think about it…. good. now move on)

The fake left is inundated with dire warnings of life without Obamacare (first suggested by the Heritage Foundation don’t ya know) and the right is being bombarded with renewed threats of the evil soooooocialism (and when I say soooooocialism, Fox News style,  I mean Nazi Germany, Satan himself, and the dreaded social justice… cus that all means the same thing to Fox News viewers and “freedom” loving libertarians who pledge their support daily to the “freedom” of corporations to rip off their customers, pay no taxes for the services they enjoy, and poison our food supply) of single payer healthcare if the court rules in favor of the constitution. The stage has been set. The actors are on their marks. Everyone is ready. Are you?

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SCOTUS About to Disappoint Many Conservatives – Will Uphold Unconstitutional Mandate

by Scott Creighton

UPDATE: Go here to watch Jon Stewart shill for fascist legislation as he claims the insurance companies would go bankrupt if the mandate provision is taken out of the law. What a tragedy that would be huh? Anyone here have a nightmare story about a loved one trying to get coverage for a condition? Anyone here lost a home to a greedy insurance company charging way too much for there protection racket? Fauxgressive Stewart actually claims that having the government force citizens to buy inferior products from private for-profit companies is some kind of current “definition of freedom and society”. Fascism, the marriage of the state and the corporations, is what Jon Stewart claims is a “social contract”. I guess that’s Stewart’s version of a new privatized social contract between us and the state. How’s that for your “CHANGE”?

——– original ————

I don’t really do predictions here, except of course when I said that the Washington Consensus was going to do to us what they did to Chile in 1973 (Sept. 11th 1973 to be exact) and when I claimed prior to the election that Obama was not going to “change” anything… but aside from those and a few others, I try not to get into predicting certain outcomes. I just put the evidence out there as best as I can and let people come to their own conclusions.

That disclaimer said, here’s a prediction: the Supreme Court is NOT going to cast out the unconstitutional mandate part of the Obamacare travesty. No way in hell.

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Extension of the Patriot Act Fails on Procedural Vote

by Scott Creighton

Well, you take your good news in small doses where you can find it these days. I guess I’m a “glass 1/8th full” kind of guy.

The extension of the Patriot Act failed yesterday on a simple procedural vote.  But, like Kenny points out over at his sideshow, this cloud’s paper-thin silver lining is already tarnishing.

“The bad news is that Patriot Act extension failed because of a procedural move that required a two-thirds majority that fell short with 277 voting yes and 148 voting no. Which means that the majority of Congress are still traitors who don’t give a flip about our rights and who remain shills for the lies of the ‘war on terror.'” Kenny’s Sideshow

To be sure, this is a temporary victory as that they will bring it back with a straight vote which will only need a simple majority to succeed.  It’s defeat probably has more to do with which party submitted this version of the extension and who gets bragging rights for being “tougher on terror” or some other nonsensical B.S.

But at least a few of our representatives are out there pretending to hold firm to the principles that sent them to congress. Take a look at video below of Dennis K. grandstanding about “freedom” and the “constitution” and all that jazz.

Payday for Dennis

Do I really need to remind anyone of how Dennis K. stands up to the powers that be in the White House?

History teaches us that we already know Kucinich’s real focus is to support “Obama’s agenda” over the rule of law when it comes to the unconstitutional Obama health-care bill and its illegal mandate forcing Americans to buy a flawed product from the big insurance companies.

So much for that constitution he brags about carrying around in his pocket.

Here are a few lines from the email Dennis sent to me explaining why he abandoned his support of the constitution and supported Obamacare. See if you can find the recurring theme Dennis hits on over and over again.

“To look at this in terms of the long-term impact on my constituents, of the moment in history in which we now stand, of the impact on the country, of the impact on the Obama presidency, on the impact on the president personally. I had to think about all of this.

… Those claims are just part of an effort to destroy the Obama presidency.

The presidency will be weakened…

… and in contrast to a crippled presidency …

The president will have a stronger hand in domestic and international affairs…

the White House invested so much in this health care bill…

… a very exciting time where the Obama presidency gets a chance to hit the reset button. (excerpts from Dennis Kucinich’s letter explaining his support of Obamacare)

Anybody see it?  I didn’t make it too subtle, did I?

I wonder how Dennis feels these days about supporting that Obama Agenda he was so worried about.

When it comes right down to it, Dennis Kucinich can be counted on to cave on this moral stand just like he did with the Insurance Company Bailout Bill.  But it’s still fun to watch him from time to time. Almost seems like he thinks we have forgotten.

Obama Care’s “Personal Mandate” Ruled Unconstitutional by Federal Judge

by Scott Creighton

A federal judge in Virginia has ruled that the Obama Care personal mandate, the law that requires U.S. citizens to purchase an insurance policy from a private company, is unconstitutional.

I, and many others, have been against this “personal mandate” since it first appeared in Hillary Clinton’s campaign rhetoric back in late 2007 and it is only one of many bad aspects of Obama’s Insurance Company Bailout Bill (what the Obama administration and his amen chorus have been trying to pass off as “health-care reform”).  But not to worry globalists, Obama’s administration has already taken up a position defending themselves and this unconstitutional provision…

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A Lie Exposed

by Jerry White, WSWS

Four months after the passage of Obama’s health care legislation—hailed by most of the media and the entire liberal establishment as the most progressive social reform since the 1960s—the reactionary implications of the measure are emerging ever more clearly.

The centerpiece of the plan, the White House claimed, was the extension of coverage to tens of millions of uninsured Americans and the containment of costs that were making medical care unaffordable for average citizens. Cost-cutting and the implementation of “efficiencies” would not affect the quality of care, the president claimed. Moreover, those already insured would be able to keep their doctors and medical plans.

As the World Socialist Web Site explained, these claims were false. The purpose of the legislation was to slash health care costs for US corporations and the government by reducing coverage and rationing care for millions of Americans.

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