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Tue Nov 27, 2012, 10:26 AM

WSJ: 'Cliff' Wranglers Weigh Medicare Age

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324784404578143564023706942.html

The fiscal cliff has revived an old idea that long seemed unfeasible: gradually raising the Medicare eligibility age to 67 from 65.

Proponents of the idea point out that the health-overhaul law makes it easier, beginning in 2014, for seniors to buy private insurance, by banning insurance denials based on pre-existing conditions. Opponents caution that the change could raise premiums for younger people who buy private plans alongside these seniors in the law's new marketplaces, and on large employers who would be required to cover seniors in company plans.



Can you believe this? How many large employers keep people on the payroll until age 67?

7 replies, 593 views

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Reply WSJ: 'Cliff' Wranglers Weigh Medicare Age (Original post)
antigop Nov 2012 OP
no_hypocrisy Nov 2012 #1
PoliticAverse Nov 2012 #2
antigop Nov 2012 #4
MannyGoldstein Nov 2012 #3
antigop Nov 2012 #5
dawg Nov 2012 #6
antigop Nov 2012 #7

Response to antigop (Original post)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 10:30 AM

1. It would be a more honest debate if there was a proposed federal law

forbidding discharge, forced retirement, discrimination against hiring because of age (and health) with not just penalties and judgments, but denial of federal aid and tax incentives if any of these conditions exist. There would be a presumption of discrimination if a plaintiff were 40 years or older.

I know there are laws like this already on the books, but they aren't strong enough to make a real difference against age discrimination.

If that kind of legislation were enacted, perhaps I could be more reasonable about raising the SS age above 65.

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Response to antigop (Original post)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 10:33 AM

2. Note that the ACA allows premium price differences based on age, limited to a 3:1 differential. n/t

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Response to PoliticAverse (Reply #2)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 10:42 AM

4. Yes, and the insurance companies wanted 5:1 n/t

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Response to antigop (Original post)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 10:41 AM

3. Democratic leadership proposed this last year

Not sure why this should surprise anyone.

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #3)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 10:44 AM

5. the idea is still kicking around -- it hasn't gone away. n/t

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Response to antigop (Original post)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 10:48 AM

6. Penny wise: pound foolish.

65-67 year-olds will continue to have health expenses regardless. As a nation, it's cheaper to pay for those expenses through Medicare, where there are powerful cost control measures in place and less than 5% overhead. The alternative is to pay for these expenses through private insurance, which has less rigorous cost controls and up to 15% overhead.

The government might reduce its expenditures by raising the age, but the country as a whole becomes poorer. (Through increased premiums for all age groups and increased out of pocket expenses for 65-67 year-olds.)

This is a stupid idea.

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Response to dawg (Reply #6)

Tue Nov 27, 2012, 10:55 AM

7. very good post. +100 n/t

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