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ProSense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-26-09 02:33 PM
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Krugman: "this is a major program to aid lower- and lower-middle-income families"
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Numerical notes on health care reform

A couple of notes to address complaints about the Senate bill from the left and the center. (Theres no use addressing complaints from the right; in general, the safest thing when dealing with crazy people is to avoid eye contact.)

For people on the left who think this is all a big nothing, consider the subsidies. From the Kaiser Health Reform Subsidy Calculator, heres the percentage of insurance premiums on the individual market that would be covered by subsidies at different levels of income measured as a percentage of the poverty line (all calculations are for a family of 4 headed by a 40-year-old):



Guys, this is a major program to aid lower- and lower-middle-income families. How is that not a big progressive victory?

For people in the center who worry, as my colleague David Brooks puts it, that there may be unintended consequences if you centrally regulate 17 percent of the economy: um, its a little late for that.

First of all, government insurance programs Medicare, Medicaid, and smaller programs like the VHA, already pay more bills than private insurance companies:



And even the private insurance is overwhelmingly provided through employers and employment-based insurance is only tax-free unless it obeys extensive regulations. Not coincidentally, those regulations resemble, in a qualitative sense, the goals of the new health reform: employers have to offer the same policy to all their employees, which in effect rules out discrimination based on medical history and subsidizes lower-paid workers.

The point is that we dont have anything resembling a free market in health insurance nor should we. Reform is filling in the gaps in the subsidized, regulated system we already have which should calm centrists in a way that offers big benefits to those most in need which should please progressives.

Do the math.




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  -Krugman: "this is a major program to aid lower- and lower-middle-income families" ProSense  Dec-26-09 02:33 PM   #0 
  - Makes sense... worth a rec  Kurt_and_Hunter   Dec-26-09 02:34 PM   #1 
  - This is why the idea of "progressives" killing it is so ludicrous - but some people think punishing  Pirate Smile   Dec-26-09 02:38 PM   #2 
  - When you have to sell something as often as Krugman is selling this bill  DJ13   Dec-26-09 02:38 PM   #3 
  - I live in Norway, with a single-payer system  johan helge   Dec-26-09 03:22 PM   #23 
     - I dont consider mandates as the same thing as an increase in taxes  DJ13   Dec-26-09 03:29 PM   #27 
     - Mandates can be like progressive taxes  johan helge   Dec-26-09 03:44 PM   #31 
     - What do you mean, taxes must be paid too, by individuals, just like mandates?  DJ13   Dec-26-09 04:01 PM   #37 
     - The subsidy is 100% for incomes up to the poverty line  johan helge   Dec-26-09 04:18 PM   #42 
     - get a subsidy of 100 % of the premium  DJ13   Dec-26-09 04:33 PM   #45 
     - I don't know  johan helge   Dec-26-09 04:52 PM   #48 
        - Thats pretty much correct  DJ13   Dec-26-09 05:07 PM   #51 
           - Ok, so it seems that  johan helge   Dec-26-09 05:31 PM   #52 
           - If you get a reply from him I hope you post it in a new thread  DJ13   Dec-26-09 05:42 PM   #53 
              - I will!  johan helge   Dec-26-09 06:05 PM   #54 
           - No idea where you are getting your numbers  jbnow   Dec-28-09 01:33 AM   #81 
     - People at 100% poverty line will be put on Medicaid.  Hello_Kitty   Dec-27-09 01:46 PM   #77 
     - The official poverty line in the U.S. is so low that it's ridiculous  Lydia Leftcoast   Dec-28-09 12:16 PM   #83 
     - People on the bottom pay a higher percentage of taxes in  Hansel   Dec-27-09 03:25 PM   #78 
     - You need a new dictionary  izquierdista   Dec-26-09 04:10 PM   #40 
     - A few drops in a frying pan?  johan helge   Dec-26-09 04:24 PM   #44 
        - Look where the poverty line is set  izquierdista   Dec-26-09 04:33 PM   #46 
           - Perhaps, I don't know  johan helge   Dec-26-09 04:45 PM   #47 
           - Baloney  treestar   Dec-26-09 08:43 PM   #57 
           - You should be very wealthy soon  izquierdista   Dec-26-09 09:58 PM   #60 
           - Up to 400% of the poverty line get subsidies. Not just 100%.  Hansel   Dec-27-09 04:19 PM   #79 
     - The subsidies stop at 400% FPL.  Hello_Kitty   Dec-26-09 09:04 PM   #59 
        - And, the subsidies are only for the premium  dflprincess   Dec-26-09 10:13 PM   #61 
        - And those out of pockets are going to stop them from getting care  Hello_Kitty   Dec-26-09 10:15 PM   #62 
           - Good points (nt)  johan helge   Dec-27-09 01:19 AM   #65 
        - Exactly. Individual mandates are, in effect, a massive and hugely regressive  inna   Dec-27-09 12:44 PM   #74 
     - He's right  karynnj   Dec-30-09 02:36 PM   #95 
     - Mandates ARE more of an affront than taxes, because mandate=tax + dedicated 100% INS CO PORK nt  Land Shark   Dec-27-09 12:14 PM   #73 
     - You cannot compare mandates to taxes.  Tailormyst   Dec-28-09 12:35 PM   #84 
  - Don't bother the haters with facts.  tabasco   Dec-26-09 02:39 PM   #4 
  - This is what being a Democrat is all about  NJmaverick   Dec-26-09 02:39 PM   #5 
  - Yes and it's about COMPROMISE--America will be better for this plan  live love laugh   Dec-27-09 11:04 AM   #68 
  - Well Paul, since it "simulates single-payer", all those subsidies magically reduce per capita costs  Oregone   Dec-26-09 02:40 PM   #6 
  - ... while it bleeds and taxes the Middle Class out of existence.  ShortnFiery   Dec-26-09 02:43 PM   #7 
  - Of course you wish he would shut up, he is DESTROYING your precious talking points.  phleshdef   Dec-26-09 02:47 PM   #11 
  - No, he's a talking political elite who garners little to no respect ... he can shove his  ShortnFiery   Dec-26-09 03:03 PM   #16 
  - .  ProSense   Dec-26-09 03:10 PM   #17 
  - +100000  Donnachaidh   Dec-26-09 03:18 PM   #19 
  - -100001  jenmito   Dec-26-09 03:22 PM   #22 
     - *I know you are but what am I* post?  Donnachaidh   Dec-26-09 04:10 PM   #39 
  - Wow-you sure sound bitter, Rush...  jenmito   Dec-26-09 03:20 PM   #20 
  - " talking political elite who garners little to no respect ", so basically he is you, except elite.  phleshdef   Dec-26-09 04:59 PM   #50 
  - YES...the Party of No can't say their favorite word anymore. nt  live love laugh   Dec-27-09 11:06 AM   #69 
  - You sound like an anti-tax Republican  johan helge   Dec-26-09 03:26 PM   #24 
  - That's quite the exaggeration. This type of tax hasn't resulted in a dismal  live love laugh   Dec-27-09 11:11 AM   #70 
  - k&r. thank you for posting this, ProSense. clarifying! nt  nofurylike   Dec-26-09 02:43 PM   #8 
  - Not if you think. nt  Jakes Progress   Dec-27-09 01:34 AM   #66 
     - ha haha! clearly, better than you do. nt  nofurylike   Dec-27-09 11:22 PM   #80 
        - People who post a bunch of "ha ha"  Jakes Progress   Dec-28-09 05:28 PM   #86 
           - nah. just all your pure put down one liner deserved. nt  nofurylike   Dec-28-09 10:56 PM   #87 
              - I guess if you can't address the post of subject  Jakes Progress   Dec-29-09 11:20 AM   #88 
                 - like you care about debate. i posted in support of someone. nt  nofurylike   Dec-29-09 02:28 PM   #89 
                    - If you can't, you can't. Got it. nt  Jakes Progress   Dec-29-09 02:54 PM   #90 
                       - won't. g'bye. nt  nofurylike   Dec-30-09 02:29 AM   #91 
                          - Sometimes brevity is the soul of witless.  Jakes Progress   Dec-30-09 10:34 AM   #93 
  - It's BAD for the Middle Class:  amborin   Dec-26-09 02:44 PM   #9 
  - +1  nonsequitur   Dec-27-09 01:33 PM   #76 
  - Your user name is most apt these days prosense. K and R  mzmolly   Dec-26-09 02:45 PM   #10 
  - Something no one is bringing up but that is important to the debate is,  Cleita   Dec-26-09 02:48 PM   #12 
  - The subsidies to me seem part of the problem  TheBigotBasher   Dec-26-09 02:48 PM   #13 
  - The evidence is crystal clear.  jefferson_dem   Dec-26-09 02:51 PM   #14 
  - Good math  HughMoran   Dec-26-09 03:00 PM   #15 
  - LOL! Here's ProSense bashing Krugman:  amborin   Dec-26-09 03:21 PM   #21 
     - No, that's diagreeing with Krugman.  ProSense   Dec-26-09 03:28 PM   #25 
     - That's bashing? Would you like me to search and find real bashing from those  HughMoran   Dec-26-09 03:28 PM   #26 
     - And here's you praising Krugman:  jenmito   Dec-26-09 03:34 PM   #29 
        - so, i used to praise him, until he got with "message discipline"  amborin   Dec-26-09 03:47 PM   #32 
           - .  ProSense   Dec-26-09 03:48 PM   #33 
           - that was fast! you're keeping up with your quotas  amborin   Dec-26-09 04:02 PM   #38 
           - Yeah, ok.  jenmito   Dec-26-09 03:51 PM   #34 
           - haha! haha! haha! haha! haha! haha! haha! haha! haha! haha! haha! haha! haha! haha! haha! haha!  HughMoran   Dec-26-09 03:53 PM   #35 
  - Facts are overrated.  impik   Dec-26-09 03:11 PM   #18 
  - Yep- it's a huge victory to throw tons of money at a corrupt and abusive industry  depakid   Dec-26-09 03:33 PM   #28 
  - I don't think you understand reform  ProSense   Dec-26-09 03:39 PM   #30 
     - You're clueless about that (and perhaps dishonest to boot)  depakid   Dec-26-09 04:22 PM   #43 
        - "Toothless regulations " More speculation  ProSense   Dec-27-09 01:35 AM   #67 
           - Well, where are the supposed teeth? It seems enforcement is kicked down  TheKentuckian   Dec-27-09 12:55 PM   #75 
  - Thank you for the info, much appreciated. n/t  MerryBlooms   Dec-26-09 03:54 PM   #36 
  - Rec'd...thanks for posting this info. n/t  firedupdem   Dec-26-09 04:17 PM   #41 
  - A  ProSense   Dec-26-09 04:54 PM   #49 
  - Mandates are a regressive. Lower income people are hurt, forced to subsidize those with more money  WeCanWorkItOut   Dec-26-09 08:28 PM   #55 
  - Rec'd for facts  treestar   Dec-26-09 08:42 PM   #56 
  - Krugman demonstrates a profound misunderstanding of progressives  Hello_Kitty   Dec-26-09 09:01 PM   #58 
  - As long as they aren't old  eridani   Dec-26-09 11:36 PM   #63 
  - Yep  Digit   Dec-27-09 12:46 AM   #64 
  - What Paul doesn't get is I don't give a damn if people have insurance  TheKentuckian   Dec-27-09 11:35 AM   #71 
  - % of Povert is an extremely misleading statistic (set long ago WAY too low)  Land Shark   Dec-27-09 12:11 PM   #72 
  - Considering full time at min wage is like 150% of poverty for a single you're  TheKentuckian   Dec-28-09 10:43 AM   #82 
  - I think Krugman most likely has the best assessment when it comes the the numbers.  ProgressOnTheMove   Dec-28-09 12:40 PM   #85 
  - Under the bus ya go, Krugman  Cali_Democrat   Dec-30-09 02:51 AM   #92 
  - The hard-sell, force-feeding tactics employed by PK and the OP  freddie mertz   Dec-30-09 10:52 AM   #94 
 

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