HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » General Discussion (Forum) » GOP Details Huge Medicare...
Introducing Discussionist: A new forum by the creators of DU

Mon Aug 27, 2012, 01:45 PM

GOP Details Huge Medicare Change In Leaked Platform

¬snip¬
The platform, snagged by Politico on Friday night after the Republican National Committee accidentally posted it to its website before taking it down, is scheduled to be approved at the convention early this week.

The text details the privatization policy that GOP lawmakers have supported for years, and that Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan are selling as necessary to “save” Medicare. But in an unusual twist, it addresses the specific aspect of the proposal that makes it a departure from what Americans know as “Medicare.”

“The first step is to move the two programs away from their current unsustainable defined-benefit entitlement model to a fiscally sound defined-contribution model,” the draft platform reads. “While retaining the option of traditional Medicare in competition with private plans, we call for a transition to a premium-support model for Medicare, with an income-adjusted contribution toward a health plan of the enrollee’s choice. This model will include private health insurance plans that provide catastrophic protection, to ensure the continuation of doctor-patient relationships.”

The esoteric language gets to the heart of the change that ends the basic structure of Medicare. Since its inception in 1965, Medicare has been a government-run insurance program that directly pays medical bills for the elderly per their needs (i.e. “defined benefit”). Republicans want to turn it into a partially privatized system that pays seniors a fixed amount to buy their own health insurance (i.e. “defined contribution”).

more: http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2012/08/republican-party-platform-medicare.php

7 replies, 1266 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 7 replies Author Time Post
Reply GOP Details Huge Medicare Change In Leaked Platform (Original post)
maddezmom Aug 2012 OP
rocktivity Aug 2012 #1
Curtland1015 Aug 2012 #2
BumRushDaShow Aug 2012 #3
librechik Aug 2012 #4
Motown_Johnny Aug 2012 #5
BlueStreak Aug 2012 #6
BlueStreak Aug 2012 #7

Response to maddezmom (Original post)

Mon Aug 27, 2012, 01:47 PM

1. It's very easy to make Medicare sustainable

remove the age limit!


rocktivity

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to maddezmom (Original post)

Mon Aug 27, 2012, 01:49 PM

2. So "the more you can afford, the better your care"?

Is that what I'm getting from this?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to maddezmom (Original post)

Mon Aug 27, 2012, 01:50 PM

3. K&R

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to maddezmom (Original post)

Mon Aug 27, 2012, 01:51 PM

4. FUCK THEM for moving everything in this country from defined benefit to defined contribution

It's inhuman, un-American and talk about not being sustainable--when the seniors start dropping dead in the streets again like in the 1920s, we'll see what sustainable really means to them.

AND THE DEMS THAT ENABLE THEM!!! FUCK THEM TOO!

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to maddezmom (Original post)

Mon Aug 27, 2012, 01:56 PM

5. We should counter with allowing younger people to buy into Medicare

but price their insurance so as to help sustain the program.

Because Medicare's operating costs are so much lower than private insurance, and because there is no profit motive involved, it could still offer lower cost insurance while charging enough to help offset the shortfall for the elderly. It is essentially a free market solution except that the government run program would compete with private companies. It also deals with the individual mandate problem since nobody would be forced to contribute to a private company's profits. They could buy insurance from the Government instead.


This debate would squash the rest of the economic arguments for the rest of the cycle.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Motown_Johnny (Reply #5)

Mon Aug 27, 2012, 02:13 PM

6. Damn straight

Our bloated, privatized system causes us to pay DOUBLE what any other advanced nation pays. We could offer a buy-in for those under 65, and charges those incremental participants 115% of what the actual costs are. It would still be better coverage and a lot cheaper than the private plans and that extra 15% would extend the viability of "Medicare for seniors" indefinitely.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to maddezmom (Original post)

Mon Aug 27, 2012, 02:24 PM

7. "Defined contribution" for health care? Are they friggin' nuts?

The defined benefit versus defined contribution is a concept that has been used for PENSION PLANS, not health care.

Let's be clear. Defined benefit says the benefit you will receive, regardless of what happens to costs / investments etc.

Defined contribution says "This is how much you pay, but the benefit you get -- well, there are no promises. We'll let you know about that."

In the case of a defined contribution PENSION plan, that makes some sense because the main risks are inflation and performance of the underlying investments. You can reasonably expect that the investments will track close to inflation, so a defined contribution pension gives some reasonable expectation of the payout.

In the case of health care, those concepts make no sense at all. What they are saying is, "OK you pay $6000 a year (or whatever). We'll give you a voucher for that $6000. But we won't tell you what that voucher will give you in terms of benefits."

It is actually worse than that. What they are proposing is neither defined benefits nor defined contributions. They are saying they we'll give you a voucher of face value $x,xxx.xx. You can only use this voucher to buy a private insurance policy from the same oligarchy of 4 companies that carve up the under-65 market today. But we won't tell you what that policy will cost you, let alone what benefits it provides. What you do know is that as time passes, you will have to pay more and more out of your pocket. That is not a "defined contribution". It is an UNDEFINED contribution for UNDEFINED benefits. It isn't anything but a bag of air ultimately. Under this plan, everybody is on their own by the time the Republicans are done with us.

Don't say end Medicare "as we know it.". This plan is the end of Medicare, PERIOD, full stop.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread