barefooted's picture

    The American Health Security Act of 2013.

    Within the current discussion (aka Clinton attacks) going on about universal health care, the Sanders camp - and candidate - are referencing his 2013 Senate bill 1782 as a working basis for his eventual plan. Here is the summary, click below for full bill text. Of the multitude of things I find interesting, including that it has no co-sponsors to date, the push-back against Hillary for how she's portraying it as dismantling the entire current system ranks in the top five. Unfortunately, thus far she has nothing more current to reference.

    Eliminates benefits under: (1) titles XVIII (Medicare), XIX (Medicaid), and XXI (Children's Health Insurance) (CHIP, formerly known as SCHIP) of the Social Security Act; (2) the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program; and (3) TRICARE.

    Repeals provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) related to health insurance coverage, including provisions concerning state health insurance exchanges.

    There's no evidence in the bill of how Senator Sanders proposes to Congressionally enact or pay for his highly transformative plan, but there's this -
    Amends the Internal Revenue Code to impose on individuals: (1) a health care income tax, and (2) an income tax surcharge on amounts of modified adjusted gross income exceeding $1 million. Imposes an excise tax on securities transactions and allows an income tax credit for such taxes.
    There's no doubt that his campaign will release a comprehensive healthcare plan ... eventually. And it will no doubt be different than Senate bill 1782. But at this point, the Clinton criticism rings at least mostly true.


    Though the Senator's home state gave it the 'ole college try, single-payer proved impossible. I've no idea how much or little Sanders contributed to the effort, but those on the ground worked unbelievably hard - to no eventual avail. Theirs is a battle that is clearly an example of how even the loftiest of ambitions in one of the most progressive states can be fiscally and logistically untenable. Multiply that by 50, with an immovable Congress and a suspicious (at best) electorate and you get the ACA.

    So do we start from where we are or reinvent the wheel?

    Thanks for the link


    You're welcome. Glad you put it to good use! ;-)

    Thx again 


    Thanks, barefooted.

    You know, healthcare is a very personal thing and my sense is that Obamacare rattled a lot of cages, but that those who have new coverage are mostly satisfied, seniors who have had Medicare trimmed aren't throwing pitch forks, and a great many people who have enjoyed health care most of their life have a suspicion that their costs have gone up, and services have gone down but are settled with it---unless someone wants to come along and shuffle the deck again.

    But the point is that there may be equilibrium right now and I agree with the view that single payer proposals are not going to win this election, and might even harm the Democrats' chances.

    Hal--excuse me, Hal, on his blog used the phrase "instead of what's best for us". Thanks, but don't include me. My services have gone down and costs have gone up, but I'm o.k. with that because many more people have been covered and that's a good thing.

    There will always be griping, (havn't gotten a free electro cardiogram in at least three years) but I just don't think healthcare for most folks is the hot issue it was in the past.

    I have a close relative who is covered by a health insurer through her employer as well as her husband's employer.

    She is going in for further tests regarding her thyroid as well as her nasal cavities next week.

    There will be a more intrusive test a week after that.

    She is afraid.

    She has to face the prospect of her own mortality.

    All these fears and yet, insurance for now is not an issue. She had just found a second opinion.

    What if she had minimal coverage with a large deductible or no coverage at all?

    Life is hard enough.

    Life can hit us from all directions sometimes.

    And who gets to choose the appropriate health measures to deal with it?

    The repubs tell us that in the end, only those with means shall have a chance to survive!

    I wonder how many people are alive today who wouldn't be but for Obamacare?

    That is an important question, the question of this election year.

    I wish to hear from Clinton and Sanders on this issue.


    Don't let emotions or facts interfere with logic.

    Democrats got butchered for Obamacare in 2010 and 2012. It's questionable whether it's a hugely popular plus in 2016. The GOP has made it the brand of the Antichrist, and our marketing hasn't effectively fought back. (partly because we let them put an anchor around its implementation)

    We could play up the steady increase in manufacturing jobs in the last couple of years.

    Democrats got butchered for Obamacare in 2010 and 2012

    My impression was that the ones who did not run as supporters of the ACA, lost. You are better versed in all this than I am, so I'd like your take on this. But I continue to be shocked at the passivity of this administration and of Democrats all over the country as to the way that the ACA has helped so many people. 

    On Social Media every condemnation includes a "you can keep your doctor" retort.  "Obamacare is a failure" were the unchallenged words to Upchuck Todd from Donald Trump last week. "Obamacare is  costing thousands of jobs," despite better and better job numbers every month.  "Premiums are going up more than ever before," is commonly accepted as truth, while the facts don't agree with that  

    Why is there so little push-back?  Why no PSA's aimed at ordinary people?  This is so important, and I just don't get it. Having the President state over and over that the ACA is good will do nothing to convince people who have been brain-washed that he is not to be trusted. They need to hear from ordinary people whose lives have been made better (or saved) by this program.  Also, polls should reflect whether the responder has insurance provided by work, Medicare, or another entity as opposed to those who qualify for the ACA.  Many people who have employee-provided insurance see the ACA as "free health care for the undeserving," and it's because they don't know any better. 

    I can't believe that in this day and age, with the power of the media there is so little effort made to inform and educate about this program. OK. Rant over.  I hope you see this and will comment. Thanks. 

    Sadly I'm probably not any better versed than you (but I write real purty, no?), though am still pretty sure the butchering was of pro-ACA politicians largely due to effective Tea Party propaganda, and am also amazed at the lack of marketing support for any large-scale change management effort - obviously someone skipped too many classes.

    This is not one of those fundamental issue that are usually well  debated  here   but the Administration has a serious a blind spot when it comes to "selling" the achievements of ACA.

    Going back to uproar over the teething problems when it was introduced. To me the real story was not that there were start up glitches-long interjection you can go out and made a cup of tea-

    (. Any introduction of a drastically new program, approach , what will you - that doesn't have a start up glitch -is  usually a sign the introducer hasn't aimed high enough.

    Remember the introduction of Intel's Pentium. It was a late night laugh line for a few months. There's still an Intel Inside.Remember cellular in 1985 - the key analyst,Herschell Shostek I think - labelled it a failure.Some failure !

    Or the NASA failures of the 80s. The underlying faults were so well known within the industry that on the day of any launch I left my office and walked outside  to be out of ear shot of the various portable radios if today was to be the day when a space vehicle full of American men-and on that day ,a woman -was going to burn up Richard Feynman ultimately did it, but it didn't take him  to diagnose that the inherent risks of the  technology had -unnecessarily -outstripped the organization's ability to correctly safe guard the human beings involved in that dangerous pursuit) 

    - it was what I would call "the amazing recovery " except that  would  conflict with my position that such problems and the sometimes recoveries are to be expected.

    If  ACA were an Republican project (interjection- it is. The health of our citizens  is the proper concern of everyone of every citizen) Fox would still be running programs on its brilliant introduction And they'd be right.

    Where were our programs?

    By now I suspect all  five of the readers knows personally someone who'd be dead  if he or she hadn't had timely,vital,  service under ACA .Which they wouldn't have had but for ACA because they would have rightly feared they couldn't pay the bill.

    ACA was a brilliant success. Per se. And in the light not only of the stupid-no vile- Republican opposition but also -as I touched on elsewhere today-  of its conflict with America's historic animosity  toward  State enterprises ( like George the Third's - let's throw some more tea in the harbor .Or the Tsar's ).

    It's a great story. Untold. 





    Barefooted, I refer you to the article on ACA and the election by Krugman in today's NYT which is consistent with my views, stated above, and others' comments in these pages---that focusing on single payer is not where Democrats' focus should be in this election. I don't have time to write a good piece on this, but suffice it to say that the Bernie backer emphasis on single payer, imo, is very misguided.  

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