In a story buried in The New York Times on Thanksgiving Day, reporter Robert Pear revealed that:
"Though it reached no agreement, the special Congressional committee on deficit reduction built a case for major structural changes in Medicare that would limit the government’s open-ended financial commitment to the program, lawmakers and health policy experts say.Pear never does reveal the identities of the Secretive Democrats who claim that their plan is a kinder gentler version of Ryancare, which would ultimately have phased out Medicare entirely with prepaid vouchers for beneficiaries to obtain private health coverage. But one of them is Catfood Commission I member Alice Rivlin, whom Pear says is for transforming Medicare from straight single payer to a plan with a "public option." In other words, the same plan for universal coverage that Candidate Obama pretended to espouse back in the day. In other words, instead of forging ahead with Medicare for All as the majority of Americans prefer, these "unnamed Democrats" are forging ahead with at least the "semi-privatization" of the only single payer system we've ever had. And you just know that once the parasitic insurers get their claws into these "Medicare improvements", it will only be a lobbyist's hop, skip and jump to full privatization. This leaked agenda should probably be named the conserva-dems' "Stealth Health Plus."
Members of both parties told the panel that Medicare should offer a fixed amount of money to each beneficiary to buy coverage from competing private plans, whose costs and benefits would be tightly regulated by the government."
I am surprised that we haven't heard more outrage from "progressive" Democratic lawmakers on this horror show of a zombie turkey carcass reanimation plan. Oh yeah.... they probably haven't heard about it yet. They are still deep in their tryptophan comas.
Meanwhile, also in keeping with the spirit of holiday news dumps, Dr. Donald Berwick is out of a job, without so much as a "heckuva job, Don" sendoff from President Obama. Recess-appointed last year, Berwick evoked the wrath of Republicans, livid that this respected physician had publicly praised the (single payer) British Health Service. The resignation appears to be the final chapter in the latest installment of what "Confidence Men" author Ron Suskind credits former Economic Advisor Larry Summers with saying: that the White House policy is to be seen as "caught trying" -- in other words, the president states a policy, or names a progressive appointee, only to sit back and passive-aggressively watch as the rabid nihilistic Republicans conveniently eviscerate it/him/her. (The poster child for this de facto policy is, of course, Elizabeth Warren.) From another Times article by the ubiquitous Mr. Pear:
"Mr. Obama said he would nominate Dr. Berwick’s principal deputy, Marilyn B. Tavenner, to succeed him as administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
Ms. Tavenner, the secretary of the Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources when Tim Kaine was governor, is more of a manager and less of a visionary than Dr. Berwick, who has been working for more than two decades to transform the health care system and raise the quality of care....
Debra L. Ness, president of the National Partnership for Women and Families, an advocacy group, said that with Dr. Berwick’s resignation, the government was losing “a visionary leader, a champion for patients,” who knew how to improve care while reducing costs."Oh well.... Obama atoned for abandoning yet another person who made the mistake of actually working for the public good. He pardoned not one, but two, turkeys this Thanksgiving. Why double the fun? I have a few theories. One: the poultry duo symbolizes the bipartishit of the Oligarchy. Plus, like the prosecution-immune Wall Street bankers, turkeys are mean and somewhat stupid creatures. And even if you kill a mother turkey before her eggs are hatched, the chicks ("poults") won't care. They will mindlessly follow the first fat hen they see.
|Poulitics as Usual|