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Karmadillo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-25-11 08:48 AM
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Democrats and Republicans escalate campaign against health care programs

Democrats and Republicans escalate campaign against health care programs
By Joseph Kishore
25 April 2011

Democrats and Republicans are escalating their attack on government programs that benefit the working class, centering their focus on Medicare and Medicaid, the principal health care programs for the poor, disabled and elderly.

The Republican Party proposal, presented by Congressman Paul Ryan and approved by the House of Representatives earlier this month, would effectively demolish the two programs. For his part, Obama has just returned from a tour of the West Coast in which he trumpeted his own plan to cut $2 trillion, primarily from the health care programs, over the next decade. The proposal, still vaguely elaborated, would expand measures already passed as part of the administrations cost-cutting health care overhaul last year.

The unanimity of the ruling class in the demand for cuts in health care was underscored by the New York Times editorial Sunday, A Real Choice on Medicare. Speaking for the liberal establishment, the Times claimed that there were stark differences between the proposals advanced by the Republicans and the Democrats. In fact, the editorial demonstrated the opposite.

The Times noted that while Republicans proclaimed their opposition to Obamas health care reform during the 2010 elections, their current proposal incorporates several of its key parts. This includes reductions in payments for Medicare Advantage, currently an option within Medicare that is administered by private insurers. The reduction is presented as an attack on subsidies to private companies, but its main effect will be to prompt these companies to reduce benefits offered to recipients.

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Proud Liberal Dem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-25-11 09:02 AM
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1. Republicans are right about the escalating costs of healthcare
and the resulting increases to the cost of Medicare but they're totally wrong about what to do about them and seem to be essentially using them to scare people into agreeing to gut Medicare- much like they did with Social Security back in 2005. Republicans are diagnosing problems (some of which they helped create) that exist (or will likely exist sometime in the future) but insisting only on their "solutions" to the problems, which are not really "solutions" so much as they are means to destroying these programs. If they were genuinely concerned about solutions, they would be more open to ideas that preserve the programs (as they currently exist) and help strengthen them for future generations. The Republican doomsayers make it seem like it's impossible to address problems like fixing the deficit, Social Security, and Medicare without making draconian cuts in government spending and aren't very willing in general to look at a wide array of options for dealing with them- but that's modern day Republicanism for you. :shrug:
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