Pre-Existing Conditions – Who Should Pay

And the debate rages over health care again.  And the left is going to lie again.

I’m seeing many posts decrying the new health are bill being moved through congress.  Gaining special attention is people’s opinions of the concept of pre-exisiting conditions.

Before I go further, it is my position that government has no role in health care, medical care or health insurance.  None.  It’s also my position that insurance companies treat pre-exisiting conditions within the context of actuarial science.  That is, if an individual has a condition prior to obtaining insurance, either the cost of that insurance is higher or the condition isn’t covered.

That being said, the narrative being trotted out by democrats is absolutely false.  Namely that Trumpcare will do away with the requirement that insurance companies must offer a policy to anyone who applies.  If you had a pre-existing condition during Obamacare and were able to obtain a policy, so too will you be able to obtain a policy under Trumpcare.

So, that being said, who SHOULD pay for such pre-existing conditions?  I found a nice article and they explain it this way:

We have a tendency to use “pre-existing conditions” as a euphemism for “expensive health care needs” but the two aren’t quite the same.  If you and I are both healthy today, and both participating in the same insurance plan, the pricing of our insurance should already factor in the probability that one of us will someday face a health problem requiring expensive treatment – and the plan should be able to handle it when we do.  But a sick person without insurance (or looking to change plans) is in a different situation; their need for health treatment is a certain problem rather than a merely possible one, and hence the average expected cost is much higher.  Technically, what they need is not insurance against a possible, unknown problem, but rather help paying for a certain, known problem.

There’s no way around a simple truth: treating an expensive health condition costs (someone) lots of money.  There are four basic approaches that can be taken to this problem.

1)    Leave sick people to face the costs of their own treatment, whether out of pocket or through high-cost insurance, no matter how ruinous those costs become.

2)    Mandate that other, healthier people overpay for the value of their own health insurance, so that sick people can underpay for the value of theirs.

3)    Spread the costs of paying expensive health bills throughout society, for example by having taxpayers pick up the tab.

4)    Require a targeted group to shoulder the costs.

The aspect that I like about this article is that they take no position on the policy.  Only that there are a limited number of options – options that describe who pays.

An important note – if you are someone that already has insurance, are healthy and then gets sick, you will be covered under that policy.  You will be provided the medical care you require and do not have a pre-existing condition.

 

The Left’s Lack of Independent Thought – And They Don’t Believe in Science

I’ve recently been engaging in climate science, the settled nature of it and the implications it has on politics.

For me, my take remains the same:

CO2 is a green house gas
Man contributes to increasing levels of CO2
Green house gases contribute to a warming world

Man has warmed the world more than it otherwise would have.

I am not convinced of catastrophic global warming.   Neither are 97% of the world’s scientists.  In fact, the IPCC itself states:

The climate system is a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore the long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible.

Most skeptics I know and read are of the same position.  We agree that the world is warming, that man is contributing but doubt the degree and future catastrophic consequences – the science isn’t in.

You would think such a position could easily be mainstream.  Admitting past actions and waiting for the science to come in on future actions.  But we’re dealing with the Left here, a group of people completely unhinged from reality.  For evidence, ask yourself, given that climate science  is complex and that we admit to not knowing all there is to know, look at two groups of people.

One group is made up of a population totally and completely in lock step.  Not one member of the group doubts the group thought and not one member votes against this group thought.

The second group is made up of diverse opinions.  There is debate.  There is an element of open mindedness.  Politicians in this second group do not vote in a block.

The first group are made up of folks on the left – they claim they believe in science.  They don’t.  They believe in the near religion of man made catastrophic global warming.  The second group is made up of those on the right.

We believe in science.

As evidence of this fact, we were given a demonstration this week:

In the latest sign of what some see as growing rigidity of thought among American liberals, new New York Times columnist Bret Stephens has been skewered online by readers of the paper for his first column. The subject of that column was a growing rigidity of thought among American liberals.

In a recognition of how serious the situation had become, executive editor Dean Baquet appeared on CNN’s Reliable Sources on Sunday morning, asking host Brian Stelter, “Didn’t we learn from this past election that our goal should be to understand different views?”

Apparently not. It’s unclear how many people have dropped their subscriptions over Stephens column, and how much of the outrage was amplified by social media. Either way, the anger is a sign of a deeper struggle on the American left over what, exactly, are the core values of the Democratic Party. There are many competitors: identity politics, wage equality, reproductive choice, renewable energy. Which are central, and which can be treated as ancillary concerns? Liberals are painfully, publicly asking themselves that question.

Liberals are cancelling their subscription to the New York Times becuase they are forced to share ideas in their safe space.

Tolerant left indeed.

Test

Testing

Happy May Day

Yesterday was May Day around the world – the one day when the world’s most social/commun-ist minded people celebrate the forms of government that renders the common man so much worse off than they otherwise would have been.

Consider two neighbors and their divergent paths:

While both Chile and Venezuela are democratic republics with mixed economies, Chile has a far greater level of market integration. HumanProgress.org’s ranking of economic freedom (based on the level of government intervention) lists Chile as the 10th freest economy in the world, leading South America. Venezuela, however, ranks last in the world.

Venezuela and its Chaveznistas have been so successful that the oil industry is in shambles, people are starving and even toilet paper is scarce.

Never to be ones to be satisfied with their poor reputation, these gentle souls of the people continue to make news:

A May Day march in Portland, Ore., “devolved into a full-scale riot with random acts of vandalism” by anarchists late Monday, police say. Attacks on police and emergency personnel resulted in 25 arrests.

Molotov cocktails, smoke bombs and other items were thrown at police, according to member station Oregon Public Broadcasting.

“Various fires were set in the street and in garbage cans, a police car was spray-painted and vandalized, and there were attempts to set at least one business on fire,” according to Portland Police. “Numerous projectiles were thrown at or launched at police and firefighters including rocks, bottles, ball bearings, fireworks, smoke bombs, and road flares.”

I leave you with The Sage:

 

Doing Minnesota Proud

Young man haulin’ the mail!

Derek Onserio, a senior at Providence Academy in Plymouth, was accepted to eight Ivy Laegue schools. Onserio has four siblings, two of which also attend Ivy League schools. He is the son of Kenyan immigrants.

You go boy!

Budget Implications to Meals on Wheels

Updated below.

In short – virtually none.

The budget proposal Trump delivered did call for a reduction in the money that eventually makes its way to Meals on Wheels.

Here is the impact in Wake County:

A spokesperson for the administration said federal dollars only account for about 3 percent of funding for Meals on Wheels.

“For every dollar in public funding that we get from the federal, state and county government, we do raise about $2,” said Alan Winstead with Wake Meals on Wheels.

I get the idea that a ‘compassionate society’ doesn’t neglect the most at risk and vulnerable.  And I agree that a society Ought care for its own.   However, the nobility earned by such a sentiment is lost when such care is obtained by force.

Much better this:

Winstead said even though the official impact of the budget cuts on Meals on Wheels is unclear, they are using the time to advocate and raise money for the program.

UPDATE:

All of this doesn’t even mention the staggering fact that an organization can’t increase efficiency by 3%.

Pino’s Response to the NCAA Ban on North Carolina

If I were in position to craft state law here in Raleigh, my response to the NCAA and their ban on NC* would be this:

Simply restrict restroom and locker room access in the exact same manner as the NCAA restricts access to sporting teams in their leagues:

The following policies clarify participation of transgender student-athletes undergoing hormonal treatment for gender transition:

1. A trans male (FTM) student-athlete who has received a medical exception for treatment with testosterone for diagnosed Gender Identity Disorder or gender dysphoria and/or Transsexualism, for purposes of NCAA competition may compete on a men’s team, but is no longer eligible to compete on a women’s team without changing that team status to a mixed team.

2. A trans female (MTF) student-athlete being treated with testosterone suppression medication for Gender Identity Disorder or gender dysphoria and/or Transsexualism, for the purposes of NCAA competition may continue to compete on a men’s team but may not compete on a women’s team without changing it to a mixed team status until completing one calendar year of testosterone suppression treatment.

Any transgender student-athlete who is not taking hormone treatment related to gender transition may participate in sex-separated sports activities in accordance with his or her assigned birth gender.

  • A trans male (FTM) student-athlete who is not taking testosterone related to gender transition may participate on a men’s or women’s team.

  • A trans female (MTF) transgender student-athlete who is not taking hormone treatments related to gender transition may not compete on a women’s team.

The NCAA itself discriminates based on gender.  FURTHER, the organization differentiates between MTF and FTM.

Opposition to HB2 indeed.

South American Dictator

 

Look, Trump is no shiny nickel.  As they say, ‘Elect a clown.  Expect a circus.”

But at least we don’t have to be subjected to boilerplate South American Dictator skreed.  It’s a Netflix show – I get it.  But I was struck by the fact that it could very well have been Obama on that stage.

Raising the Minimum Wage – Harming the Under Privileged

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – I do NOT doubt the nobility of the liberal.  From food stamps to public schools – from Medicaid to minimum wage.  The liberal is earnestly striving the raise the standard of living for the less fortunate.

They’re just wrong.

They are wrong due to two critical errors:

1.  They don’t understand economics.
2.  They assign the moral benefits of personal charity to voting for a larger state.

Take for instance the minimum wage.

Businesses run on margin – profit.  Often that margin is razor thin.  So, if wages equate to X% of your expenses and those wages are going to go up by 40% it only stands too reason that costs need to go up by 40% of X or  some other expense is going to go down by 40% of X.

That ‘other’ expense?  Wages.  Either fewer wage earners or fewer hours worked.

And guess who is the first guy shafted?  The least productive – often the least experienced, the youngest, the poorest and the most in need of a job.

The cold hard fact of the matter.  If you want to increase the gap between my kids and kids born to a single, minority, uneducated, poor woman, you simply increase the minimum wage.

Period.

Not only do her kids not get the same jobs my kids get – they never benefit from the ‘On The Job Training’ that my kids get.

Data bears this out:

In the summer of 1995, more than half of teens age 16 to 19 worked in the summer; today, less than a third do. The drop has been especially steep for boys, who are now less likely than girls to work during the summer. Experts attribute the decline to a variety of forces: the disappearance of many entry-level jobs, the rising share of young people spending their summers in school or other educational activities and, at least recently, a rising minimum wage. (Employers may not see teen workers — especially those with less experience or fewer skills — as worth $10 or more per hour.)

Two of the three reasons are direct responses to increased cost of labor – automation and worth.

Young Americans from low-income families have been especially hard-hit by the decline in summer employment. According to data from the Current Population Survey, teenagers whose families make less than $20,000 per year are now less than half as likely to work as those from families who earn at least $100,000, and, unlike their wealthier peers, low-income teens have seen hardly any rebound in employment since the recession ended. (Black and Hispanic teens, too, have far lower employment rates than whites.)

Unfortunately, low-income teens are also the ones who most need summer jobs. They need the money, of course — a job that might provide pocket-money to a middle-class teen could be a key source of income for someone from a poorer family. But they also need the experience.

My son is soon going to hit the job market.  And I’ll find him a job.  I’ll either make one or or find one or buy one.  I won’t do this so that he has money for more Pokemon cards or Xbox games.  I’ll do this so that when he hits high school he’ll know how to:

  • Show up on time
  • Complete tasks
  • Take coaching
  • Earn money
  • Work a shitty job in the hopes of one day not

The tragedy, the REAL tragedy, is that the minimum wage liberal is doing more damage to the population they hope to help than any capitalist ever could.

The Anti Tea Party

 

My biggest concern about Trump is that he mimics Obama and trounces the constitution, expands the scope of the Federal government and inches ever closer to a “too big to fail” executive.

My second biggest concern about Trump is the pendulum – the swing back to a liberal majority.

Perhaps I’m wrong in fear number two:

But what made the tea party successful, according to Theda Skocpol, a Harvard professor whose field studies of the tea party movement became a 2011 book, was a particular climate on the political right. “We thought of the tea party as a set of several intersecting forces that were leveraging each other and helping to build each other’s clout to change and use the Republican Party,” she said. Self-organizing grass-roots groups, top-down professional advocacy and money groups, such as FreedomWorks and Americans for Prosperity, along with right-wing media, swirled together to make the movement a success, according to Skocpol. It remains to be seen if the climate on the left will prove to be hospitable for the growth of a similarly effective movement.

Personally, my belief is that the Left is made up of fringe groups – each with their complaint.  It might be the environment, or women’s rights, racism, the poor or refugees.  Almost always the group is made up of people who themselves are not injured, but instead are people *representing* the injured.

Further, these groups don’t advocate policy that would require themselves OR the aggrieved to bear responsibility for the work to be done to fix the problem.  THAT responsibility falls on someone else, usually the rich, the white or the man.

As such, because they don’t feel it their responsibility, combined with the fact that it is not them impacted, they will never dig deep enough to do the work.

I shouldn’t fear the professional ‘outrager’, but I admit to some lost sleep.