Health Care summit

Now that the summit has ended, it’s time in my view for the Dems to do what is necessary and pass health care reform anyway they can.

It’s clear Republicans oppose the plan simply because it is a Democratic idea.

Premiums are rising for individuals, businesses and towns. Competition is needed in the industry and that is what reform would do. This debate has gone on and on. It is time for action.


About fsnowflack
Fred Snowflack was editorial page editor and a political columnist for the Daily Record of Morristown for almost 12 years. He has won numerous awards for editorial and column writing from the New Jersey Press Association and has written a blog on county and state politics for the last three years. He lives in Ledgewood in Morris County.

28 Responses to Health Care summit

  1. hfa says:

    IF I were a betting person, I would say that the Democrats will not be able to agree on a bill. I also do not think that reconciliation is the way to go. what are your thoughts on reconciliation?

  2. Edward France says:

    After watching the meeting I realized how bad we need term limits. Too many egos. We could use a few humble folks down in DC. Some kind of reform is needed. I know because I am self employed and the big insurance companies do little to help small business people. Nobodyvwants to see the nation take on more debt. But why should the lobbists benifit from the fact that human beings need health care from time to time? Who real runs this country anyway? Is it the people we elect? Or maybe it is the guys who hold the strings on the elected actors? Not one of those elected folks on tv today has to worry about a health care plan. They are out of touch with the workers who pay the bills around here. Will anything get done? How could it? At least they are talking about the issue. For too long they just turned their backs on the problem. Somebody is making money there. Who’s toes are they trying to avoid stepping on?

  3. JS says:

    “I’m fred snowflack and i approve the democrats messsage.”

  4. P says:

    What’s clear is that you didn’t watch a minute of the show today. Your attitude reflects that of the President – Let’s put on a dog and pony show and when it’s over go back to jamming this baby through. Republicans have legitimate concerns about this plan and they voiced them today. If the President decides to just humor their input we will all rue the day we elected him.

    P.S. Prices have been rising in the insurance industry for as long as there’s been one. They’ve also been rising for food, transportation, medical care, electronics . . What makes today any different? And if the government’s job is to stop the rise in prices, why not just tell everyone that everything is frozen. kind of the King Canute solution.

  5. You have a pretty cavalier attitude, P, to rising costs for health insurance .. You ignore the fact those costs are hurting as I said, many people in all walks of life.

    It would be irresponsible not to try to do something about that.


  6. Kevin Nedd says:

    Let’s be clear. The Senate has already passed a Health Care Reform Bill. Once the House passes it, the only thing remaining is for the Seneate to pass a number of fixes to the bill they have already passed. It is these fixes that may go through reconciliation, not the entire bill, as again, it has already passed the Senate. So the GOP’s claim that the entire health care bill will be rammed through via reconciliation is a LIE. Only the fixes may require this procedure; a procedure that could be avoided if the GOP allowed an up or down vote via regular measures.

  7. Ted says:

    Pbrain as you’ve pointed out many times, health care costs make up about 16% of GNP. That, in it self, makes the industry worthy of scrutiny. On top of that, Preventable illness makes up 80% of the illness burden but 90% of healthcare cost. I think HCR is kind of important.

  8. P says:

    Ted – The health care industry gets plenty of scrutiny and is heavily regulated. What it doesn’t need is to be nationalized, the way the Democrats would like.

    I have no idea what point you are trying to make with the 80/90% remark, and of course, you think health care reform is kind of important, but your reasoning leaves a lot to be desired.

    Fred – Not cavalier, just pointing out that the logic you use to take over health care could easily be applied to energy, food or other industries where prices can have big jumps. And speaking of big jumps, how much of the cost of health care increases come from government mandates that force insurers to add whatever coverage politicians deem essential to the latest political pressure group to appear before their committee? Politicians love to hand out Other Peoples’ Money (OPM) and then rail against the health care and insurance industry when their actions have financial consequences.

    Nedd – Actually, your spin is the lie. Many of the Dems who voted for HCR assumed it would go to committee and then come back under a 60 vote rule. If Obama presses forward with reconciliation he will find out that he doesn’t have enough support from the Dems to get this passes. of course, in the end, he’ll blames the Republicans for his failure to lead a super-majority of Dems to victory.

    Just love doing battle with the *ED* Team.

  9. Kevin Nedd says:


    Sorry but you are wrong. What people assume doesn’t count. It’s what actually happens.

    I suggest you talk to my friend Chuck Todd:

    I rest my case.

  10. That ain’t the issue, P. Costs are high because of the high number of uninsured who get free care. So …. insurance companies are charged higher and higher rates and pass them on,

  11. P says:

    Nedd – Next time you need to give credit when you lift someone’s talking points (Celine, oops, meant E.J. Dionne ripping off Chuck Todd). And if you think that an observation by CT is an accurate predictor of the future, well I have a bridge in NY that I’d like to sell you.

    Fred – I have no idea what your post means. My guess – Insurance companies have to charge more because they are also forced to cover the uninsured’s costs? Doesn’t sound like it’s their fault that they have to raise rates then, it’s the legislators who dump other people’s costs onto them without paying for them – More OPM (see above). Try again.

  12. Ted says:

    Pbrain, it’s simple the 10% differential represents unnecessary cost. the dollars spent on tests and treatment that would be better spent on preventive medicine and private insurance company profits

  13. No P, it is not the legislators.

    No one in this country can be denied medical care for cost reasons. So, the millions of uninsured get what essentually is free health care _ for basic needs. What do hospitals do? They charge the people who pay more. The people who pay are primarily insurance companies, That is why rates keep going up. The cost of medical care keeps on rising, so hospitals charge the payers (insurance companies)more. Yes, they also charge individuals who can pay more, but really, how many people do you think write a check to cover a coronary bypass? Not many.
    That is why the answer is to insure all … that will end the notion of free care and work to stabilize costs. Costs will also be stablized by competition, which is what the public exchanges will do,. Talk to any hospital exec and you will learn that the current system is broken and will only get worse without fix it and to insure more people.

  14. Kevin Nedd says:


    I didn’t say I agreed with CT’s further points. My only point, which I fully understood prior to watching CT state it on MSNBC and reading Mr. Dionne’s column, is that only the fixes to the current Senate HCR bill need to go through reconciliation, not the entire bill itself.

    Your habit of making inferences isn’t serving you well, is it?

  15. ChubbyPaul says:

    Snowy, you gotta let this go! Do you watch TV? This healthcare thing is dead. Let it go!!!

    Come up with a new cause.

  16. P says:

    So the legisslature requires the hospitals and doctors to treat people for free and pass the cost along to the insurance carriers who then pass it along to consumers? Still sounds like the problem is the government being generous with OPM, and then whining when people’s bills go through the roof.

  17. P — I am beginning to think you do not understand this at all.

    The situation of people getting free care is what is happening NOW. The goal of reform is to fix that. You really need to educate yourself.

    The idea is that all will have insurance – insurance people will PAY for. That will work to end the cycle of uninsured getting care and hospitals charging those who do pay _ insurance companies. News every day shows the extent of the problem,. I saw an item out of Roxbury about the council considering laying off employees partly because their health insurance costs are rising so much. That IS the problem seen on a very small scale,

  18. hfa says:

    New York Times 2-27-10

    WASHINGTON — The future of President Obama’s health care overhaul now rests largely with two blocs of swing Democrats in the House of Representatives — abortion opponents and fiscal conservatives — whose indecision signals the difficulties Speaker Nancy Pelosi faces in securing the votes necessary to pass the bill.

  19. P says:

    Fred, I thought rewriting your post as both a process flow and parody would make my point, but unfortunately you are so wedded to “reform” that you’ll accept whatever is put in front of you.

    Maybe this cartoon will help –

    They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and I don’t have time to write that much (I think just heard Ted give a sigh of relief).

  20. As I said, P, you do not understand this issue at all. I think I am going to ban you from commenting on health care.

    The fact that you think a cartoon is the answer shows how vacant you are about the serious issues involved here. ,.

  21. ChubbyPaul says:

    Snow-dog, if you ban P, you lose 30% of the people on these blogs! Its ok for people to think differently.

  22. ChubbyPaul says:

    I am so hungry. I am gonna eat about 15 bologna sandwiches, which will leave me room for 2 gallons of ice cream.

  23. I’m kidding Chubby Paul

  24. P says:

    Fred – Did you delete my response (as part of my “ban”) or did your site eat my post?

  25. It wasn’t me …. It must have been Kevin Nedd 🙂

  26. P says:

    Have other people noted that your site sometimes “rejects” some posts?

  27. Yes … trying to stop it, though

  28. P says:

    Remind us again why we should believe Obama and the CBO when they tell us that HCR will REDUCE the deficit over ten years.

    They can’t even project what’s going to happen in ten MONTHS –

    Oops. Looks like the hole just got $2,000,000,000,000 deeper.

    HCR is going to save us a bundle and . .oh yeah, I have a slightly used bridge in Brooklyn that I can sell you for a song.

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