China questions costs of U.S. healthcare reform

November 16, 2009

Guess what? It turns out the Chinese are kind of curious about how President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform plans would impact America’s huge fiscal deficit. Government officials are using his Asian trip as an opportunity to ask the White House questions. Detailed questions.

Boilerplate assurances that America won’t default on its debt or inflate the shortfall away are apparently not cutting it. Nor should they, when one owns nearly $2 trillion in assets denominated in the currency of a country about to double its national debt over the next decade.

Nothing happening in Washington today should give Beijing any comfort or confidence about what may happen tomorrow. Healthcare reform was originally promoted as a way to “bend the curve” on escalating entitlement costs, the major part of which is financing Medicare and Medicaid. That is looking more and more like an overpromised deliverable.

For instance, a new study from the U.S. government’s Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services finds that the healthcare reform bill recently passed in the House of Representatives would increase healthcare spending to 21.3 percent of GDP by 2019 compared with 20.8 percent under current law. That’s bending the curve the wrong way. The study also questions the “long-term viability” of the $500 billion in Medicare cuts meant to help pay for expanded insurance coverage.

In addition, the CMS study gives a clearer cost estimate than the one provided by the Congressional Budget Office. According to the CBO, the 10-year cost of PelosiCare is $894 billion. But that analysis includes early years with little government spending, According to the CMS, the House approach would cost $1 trillion from 2013-2019, or some $140 billion a year when fully put into effect.

Few realists in Washington think any of the current reform plans make a significant dent in the long-term healthcare cost to government. Indeed, the Senate Budget Committee recently held hearing about creating a bipartisan commission to find solutions to America’s entitlements problems.

If healthcare reform really bent the curve, there would be a no need for such a commission to do Healthcare Reform 2.0.

The Chinese might want to keep up the questioning.


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Why should China loan America money to have better health care than China? Maybe China should be spend their money on their own health care.

Posted by dg | Report as abusive

“How long is going to take the idiotic American public to realize we must have changes and reform.”The pot…is not very smart.

Posted by k | Report as abusive

If the ‘public option’ is so great I have this very simple question to ask:Why did the Dems. exempt themselves from it?If socialized healthcare is so wonderful and perfect, how come the fatality rates of Colon Cancer (25%) and Breast Cancer (16%) are greater in countries with socialized medicine?If the Canadian health system is one we need to copy why did I attend 3 funerals (2 in the same year) with grieving friends who had relatives die of cancer.Of note 2 of them died before seeing the oncologist for the first time (about 1 yrs wait) and the other survived long enough to see the doctor but was in the end to late.Finally, if our system of healthcare is so crappy how come people from other parts of the world come here for life saving surgery, especially Canadians. When I lived on the Canadian border the local ER had more Canadians who were willing to pay out of pocket instead of getting it ‘for free’ because the ‘for free’ could be a 12+ hr wait.

Posted by Vick | Report as abusive

Several comments noted claims rejection percentages by payers ranging from 4-7%. The epitome of government run healthcare is the NYS Medicaid program. Recently a major healthcare receivables management company posted the rejection rates it receives from payers across the US and NYS Medicaid’s was 40% of all claims received. With payment rates as low as $7.00 for an office visit, can you imagine this model being expanded for all of us?

Posted by fun pilot | Report as abusive

Maybe OBowMao can give them Hawaii in return for the debt so he can implement his socialist health care.

Posted by Darrel | Report as abusive

It’s easy to blame “greedy corporations”, however the facts are the average healthcare company turns a 3% profit, substantially lower than dozens of other industries and one third of the 8% to 10% profit motive that is the objective of most business models. The reason quality healthcare costs so much is because quality healthcare actually costs so much. Pelosicare will die because of abortion, death panels, public option and jail time for “non-insurance felons”. Yes, avoiding her insurance options are a felony, which also kills your ability to vote. It is unconstitutional and the Supreme Court will throw it out.What we need is tort reform, insurance sold nationally across state lines (like car insurance), eliminate the 70,000 page IRS tax code that costs companies enormous amounts of money to comply with, more generic drugs and more preventive care. To pay for it, the size of our government must be cut by 10% to 15% to not only balance the budget, but pay down the debt. We spend $500 million a day in interest on the debt (which will go up substantially when interest rates rise). That would easily pay for health care reform when eliminated. The problem is too much government NOW, not a need for more government intervention. The Chinese couldn’t be more spot on–it’s just like Guido sending the knee breaking thug to check on the shark loan. They’re concerned about the deficit and plummeting US dollar and for good reason–the deficit is doubling and the US dollar is plummeting.

Posted by fast eddie | Report as abusive

It would be (deliciously) ironic if the reason Obama backed off from Socialized Medicine was a need to place our Communist Chinese creditors….

Posted by CatoRenasci | Report as abusive

We’ve read this book before…it was called “forced busing.”Just as “forced busing” destroyed public schools where it was implemented against the will of the people, so will “forced government healthcare” destroy the health care system.Just as parents opted out of the public schools rather than have their children bussed, so will people who can afford it opt-out of the public health care system and purchase private insurance at private medical facilities.The system will quickly become a caste system with the poor and middle class receiving little or no health care and the rich receiving quality care. Doctors will bend over backwards to work in the private system and the public system will be left with only the doctors not hired in the private system.If anyone thinks the Detroit public school system is a success, they will love government health care.If you want to lock in insurance rates before they skyrocket from Obamacare, visit

Maybe OBowMao can bow deeply and then trade them Hawaii for his debts and socialized health care.

Posted by Darrel | Report as abusive

Why should this country mortgage it’s future and sink deeper into debt to insure what for the most part are the bottom feeders in our country? The uninsured are mostly lazy and irresponsible and have been attached to the government tit since birth. The best way to provide coveraqe is to hold these folks responsible and put their lazy butts to work. Sure there are exceptions to this theory, but by and large we are going broke to insure gangbangers and criminals and folks that would rather spend their disposable income on weaves and Escalades than their own health care. We see this in the schools when people drop their kids off in fancy vehicles and their kids eat the free lunch. We need to stop making “Life free” and demand people take care of themselves. Now the government wants to step in and break the country to take care of people who arent responsible for themselves. If most liberals believe in leaving nature undisturbed, then by reason they should allow that socila Darwinisim be allowed to run it’s course.

Posted by Joe V | Report as abusive

“This is the question I would like to ask. Health next to family is probably the most important aspect of one’s life. Why in the world would we leave the of the most important aspects of our life in the hands of greedy corporations whose only concern is profits.How long is going to take the idiotic American public to realize we must have changes and reform.” (Posted by imgibson)- Why would we forfeit our freedom to choose how we see fit to spend our money on proper health care over to a central government? Why would we leave one of the most important aspects of our family life in the hands of government bureaucrats? Which is the better choice, Government control or Private control? This is the question the “Idiotic American Public” is asking. And in my opinion, even a glance at history answers the question unequivocally. Governments do not have your best interests in mind, they have the government’s best interest in mind. Worse yet, once a government program starts, it never goes away, no matter how inefficient or big of a drain it is on society. Before you scurry with your tail between your legs to the governments supposed safety, take a deep breath, and look at the situation.Tort reform is by far the most important change needed. And it is in fact what makes our health care so expensive.

Posted by LibertyTree | Report as abusive

What I find comforting is that Chinese, like Mexicans, have more clout with elected officials then the citizens (real government) of the United States of America.

Posted by oregonrr | Report as abusive

the real problem isn’t democrat or republican. it is the federal reserve. if they are allowed to continue creating money out of thin air then we will keep getting wasteful social programs, wars for the hell of it and an economy that is based on consumption and piles of debt. but don’t take my word. do your own research about sound economic policies.

Posted by silver fox | Report as abusive

imgibson asks: “Why in the world would we leave the of the most important aspects of our life in the hands of greedy corporations whose only concern is profits. To me that is unbelievable.”I ask imgibson: Why in the world would YOU leave one of the most important aspects of your life in the hands of incompetent politicians whose only concern is their own retention of power? To me, that’s even more unbelievable (not to mention dangerously naive).

Posted by LaurieP | Report as abusive

I have sold insurance for 44 years. People try to say the insurance companies are greedy. Let me tell you the truth about health insurance. Health insurance is not a money maker for a insurance company. Almost every company I have sold health insurance for has got out of it several years ago. Why?It is not profitable. One company I sold for made only one million dollars profit. I stopped selling for them because that is not enough for a large company to make in a year and be safe. I will not sell life insurance or annuities for a company that also sells health insurance. One of my companies that had a excellent rating was bankrupt and had to be bought out after two years in the health business. The profit of the average health company is only 3 to 4 percent on their money. The company that only made 1 million dollars paid a quarter of a million dollars on one of my clients for his triplets birth and care. The politicans who are trying to make health insurance companies appear greedy do not know what they are talking about. Remember, as a insurance man I will not sell other lines of insurance for a company that sells health. Think of the names of companies that sell health insurance. Go buy a health policy from any of the top life insurance companies. Why do they not sell it? Because it is not profitable.

Posted by george | Report as abusive

WTF is this sh*t you mean the Chinese don’t want to pay for our healthcare?????????

Posted by Redneck44 | Report as abusive

The Chinese ought to be concerned and as far as I can tell, are our friends as long as we maintain mutually beneficial relationships. Obama has proven himself irresponsible with the company store and democrats have left their campaign promises in the dust so far as no lobbyists in the White House, health care will be deficit neutral, ad. nauseum. I am glad they are asking the kind of detailed questions they are because it bring the democrats back to the realization that we already have good health care and those who are left out are illegal aliens and the young who generally don’t have as many health concerns as the elderly. If Obama does not listen to Americans, maybe the Chinese can get his ear and he can recant all the 2032 pages of gobble de gook in that wretched health care bill.

Posted by SHEARWATER | Report as abusive

What I will be very, very curious about is whether the Chinese can actually get fact-based answers to their questions.I don’t see how obowma could risk fact-based answers, because the commitment on the part of the leftists to this misnamed health care plan is fully dependent on the facts NOT being made clear or acknowledged.

Posted by Ann Nelson | Report as abusive

What ever happened to “rugged individualism” and faith in God in the United States of America. Why is it now we believe the government can handle everything we need and Jesus is ridiculed and hidden but Allah and the Muslims are protected. To the people who believe and complain about their position in life and how bad their health care is I would ask them to pull up their boot straps and do something to change their position. Also, take the time to really look into the matters they so vehemently speak and care about to find out the facts. I spent many years in other countries and realized how blessed and fortunate I and every American is to have been born in America. We are not perfect but the Lord has already said this in his word. However the USA is still the best opportunity to be in to have the freedoms, choices and lifestyle we all enjoy and take for advantage. Liberals need to get off Moms milk.

Posted by Westo Keeler | Report as abusive

Liberals (the logically challanged) say ‘Don’t trust the greedy insurance companies!’ The private sector ALWAYS operates more efficiently than the government. And those greedy insurance companies have smaller profit margins most other business (3%-8%). Get the real facts and stop believing the lies. Question: Do you believe that past performance is the best indicator of future performance? The government can’t run a damn thing and their budget estimate for entitlement programs are ALWAYS LOW by a magnitude of 5-10 – so $1 trillion becomes 8 Trillion!

Posted by Jeff | Report as abusive

This is what happens when you have a lawyer inexperienced in running any organization running a $14 trillion operation with the advice of failed economists. If you want to actually do your homework, you will find that this Great Recession was caused by Greenspan (easy credit through quantitative easing), and the $500 TRILLION derivatives market that was invented by Wall Street and protected (left unregulated) by Greenspan, Rubin, Larry Summers, Barney Frank and Chris Dodd. Summers is now Obama’s advisor.There are some reforms with health care that can help, though it doesn’t matter without the underlying issues being resolved. Number one, the mother of all asset bubbles is being created RIGHT NOW through easy money from the dollar carry trade (Forex) being invested in risky assets. People are able to borrow US dollars at a -10% to -20% interest rate and are buying ANYTHING as the profit is already built in to the carry trade. This works until the dollar finally stops plummeting and stabilizes, then all the shorts will be called and the risky assets collapse. Number two, the US deficit. It cannot continue to grow without bursting. When this deficit bubble bursts, China and Japan call in their debt, the entire country will collapse. Most the states are already bankrupt, the US has to pass legislation every year to authorize more debt (to keep from officially being bankrupt) and Americans are taxed out. Business taxes in our state are 49% of sales and taxes on Americans will soon go to 60% to 65% of gross income. There is no one left to “bail us out”. The only solution is bankruptcy of the country, or, as is often the case historically, you go to war with your creditors and if you win, there is not more debt to repay.

Posted by big daddy | Report as abusive

China isn’t the only one questioning the cost of yet another government-run entity. The problem is, no one actually writing the bill is listening, nor will they. They want this bill passed, regardless of its cost, who it covers, or who it punishes. Call me a teabagger, or whatever third grade acronym one can come up with, but for me, I like to know what something actually costs before I buy it.

Posted by 2012yet? | Report as abusive

The Chinese should absolutely be worried. If the health care reform the democrats designed gets out of the Senate, it will balloon the national debt. They fully recognize we cannot pay back what we owe now.Obama and company must have some scheme planned. The Chinese are asking the right questions e.g. wanting assurances the US won’t default on its debt or inflate the shortfall away.No other entity can operate like our Federal government contining to spend into deficits. Even our local city, county, and states are having to do layoffs to stay within budget. That is precisely what Obama should be doing.

Posted by Bulldog | Report as abusive

STOP SPENDING OUR MONEY.You are soooo fired in less than a year.

Posted by mark | Report as abusive

Whoever wrote the following is an idiot:”This is the question I would like to ask. Health next to family is probably the most important aspect of one’s life. Why in the world would we leave the of the most important aspects of our life in the hands of greedy corporations whose only concern is profits. To me that is unbelievable. There concern is not your health so why would we believe they’re going to do anything in our best interest. Ask the families of people who have died because the insurance companies refused or denied life saving treatment. If that’s not a death panel I don’t know what is. Of course they only want to insure healthy people and omit pre-existing conditions while continually raising premiums and will continue to do it because WE HAVE NO CHOICE.How long is going to take the idiotic American public to realize we must have changes and reform.”It is not the responsibility of a government or a society to provide health care or any other subsidies to the citizenry. Each person is, and must be, responsible for themselves and their families if a society of free people is to be maintained. To mandate free health care for society the government must first STEAL it at the point of a gun from those who provide it. How is that fair to those who have sacrificed both financially and personally to acquire the skills necessary to treat our illness. STOP BEING A LOOTER and take responsibility for yourself and your family. It is not my responsibility to work to pay for my family and yours.READ THE CONSTITUTION or move to another country. STOP DESTROYING THE FREEDOM AND LIBERTY OF THE RESPONSIBLE AMERICANS!

Posted by LibertyFirst | Report as abusive

I cant believe that some people think the Government is more compassionate and more competent to handle their illnesses than a person who’s motive to make you better is to feed his family. Havent you ever been to the DMV or the Post office?In my twenties I spent two years under a Canadian Health care plan, and if you enjoy sleeping in hallways, and seeing people die right in front of you with little or no pain medication, The Obama plan is your deal. Thank God I never got sick, but I saw plenty eho did. You have no idea how good you have it.Greed (as you call it) is the engine that makes the term “good customer service” work. If hospitals or Doctors treat people badly, they wont have customers. There is real competition for you to go to their hospital, we see advertisements all the time. If you think that an underpaid, overworked, poorly educated physician/nurse/ is going to give you better care than a well educated (someone who got their training in a real hospital instead of off a cereal box), you must be an imbicile.

Posted by Jim | Report as abusive

Interesting that the Chinese are asking the tough questions and the US press and congress are milk toasting the whole thing. What a bunch of losers. Hope and change? Hope China can change US fiscal policy.

Posted by MiBu | Report as abusive

Maybe the Chinese’s are concerned because they invented the first calculator. Perhaps they could teach Nancy, Reid, Barack, and Geithner how to use one.

Posted by Jeff | Report as abusive

Why government sees fit to tell us what we should be covered for health insurance? Why can’t they mandate something very simple, everyone must carry a hospitalization insurance, like, the liability car insurance. The rest should be up to the individuals to decide what kind of coverage they want, like a high deductible, a low or no deductible, full coverage, or etc. So in health insurance, the basic hospital coverage is necessary because that was to protect our neighbors really, so, they don ‘t get stuck with our bills. The rest should be up to decision by individuals. Insurance companies can come up with different type of premiums that cover different things, such as preventive care package, and etc.Yes, health is different than the car, but isn’t it all our own responsibility to begin with anyway? For those illegal immigrants, I am sorry, I think we should send their government their bills, or, we should charge the price to the aid that was given to their government, somehow, someone ought to pay for it, and I don’t see any reason why we should pay for other people’s problem.

Posted by Dots | Report as abusive

Giving our failed medical system more money is like fighting a fire with gasoline. Many “standard” treatments cause more injuries if they don’t flat out kill you.The science literature based parts of naturopathic medicine can provide more answers for chronic diseases.

Posted by ba | Report as abusive

Dear imgibson:So you want the likes of barney frank messing with your health? If so, you deserve what you get.

Posted by JuanitoVerde | Report as abusive

And why are Obama and Congress ignoring the fact that Medicare currently has an unfunded liability of $37 trillion?In his speech to Congress about his “plan,” Obama stated that the only thing his plan would eliminate is the “hundreds of billions of dollars in waste and fraud” associated with Medicare.Let’s see if the government can eliminate all that Medicare waste and fraud before it embarks on another health program sure to be accompanied by more scams.

Posted by judithod | Report as abusive

Recently the Chinese critized the current administration for destroying the value of the dollar by excessive borrowing and “printing” of money. Now they are lecturing the US President on capitalism and questioning the the cost of the “health care” plan. As a veteran of the cold war, I never thought time would come when we would depend on the Communist Chinese to protect us from our own government. But apparantly it has.

Posted by Ron WX | Report as abusive

After passing Health care reform, maybe Dear Leader can pass Church reform. It’s too confusing with all these churches, which one Dear Leader wants me to go to; it would be much easier if he would ban all the ‘bad’ ones and have an approved church checklist. That way we can make sure we are all attending the good “progressive ” churches that teach such Universal Truths as Climate Change, Gay Marriage equality, and Maoism!

Posted by Joe | Report as abusive

Big Daddy hit the nail on the head: GOVERNMENT HAS NO MONEY!! they produce NOTHING so they have nothing to sell. YET, they promise us great things…FOR FREE! Wake up America. Government can only “pay” for health care by three ways.1. Taxation2. Cut spending on other social programs (not likely)3. The hidden tax: INFLATION…counterfeiting dollars and devaluating our currency

Posted by silver fox | Report as abusive

To imgibson, who asks: “Why in the world would we leave the of the most [sic] important aspects of our life in the hands of greedy corporations whose only concern is profits[?]“, I ask, Why in the world would we leave our health care in the hands of power-hungry incompetent politicians in Washington, whose only concern is confiscating yet more of our wealth in exchange for greater control over every aspect of our lives? Moreover, why would we leave it in the hands of the same people who have bankrupted Amtrak, the Postal Service, Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae? Furthermore, health care is not in the hands of “greedy corporations” presently. It is in the hands of ourselves and our doctors. The “greedy corporations”, which earn a net profit of a piddling 6% for spreading risk in a huge population, do not have the power to dictate life and death, despite the rhetoric of the Left. They rarely deny claims, and when they do, you can take them to court. The government under Pelosi/Obama-Care, on the other hand, really would have the power of life and death, and there would be no ability to sue the government in court if they deny care (which they will, under their “death panels”). Wake up. If you really want to reduce health care costs, remove barriers barring insurance companies from selling policies across state lines, implement tort reform so we stop making ambulance chasing lawyers rich with resulting higher insurance premiums, increase the amount of money people can put into tax-exempt health savings accounts, and stop the government from mandating insurance companies to provide gold-plated coverage to people who don’t want or need it.

Posted by LoonsToTheLeftOfMe | Report as abusive

Here in Massachusetts, we have recently learned that the states groundbreaking univeral coverage health care plan — the one used as a model for the Federal plan under consideration — is, in just its second year, running hundreds of millions of dollars over budget. Apparently it is more difficult than anticipated to predict the costs of universal heathcare proposals.

Posted by JohninBoston | Report as abusive

I wonder if they will accept the song and dance number as “detailed answers” as easily as american sheep do? Smile mega-watt smile, slap some backs, read the flowery script, tap dance, dash about madly in the 71 car motorcade……will it work on the Chinese?

Posted by ceeceee | Report as abusive

There is one question that still remains unanswered about providing health care to all Americans. Where are we going to find all the doctors to take care of over 40 million new patients?With the current number of doctors we have in the country, something gotta give. The quality of the health care people receive will either go down or we increase the number of doctors. This is what Obama is not telling us.

Why do you government health care bill government control loving drones want some entity like the U.S. Government who is bankrupt, running and providing your health care?! I don’t understand you entitlement loving Democrat Drones. In September, the Treasury Department reported it spent $46.6 Billion more than it took in. A month that usually shows a surplus. Socialism has never worked anywhere, yet you people just can’t wait to stand in line for what you believe is going to be a freebee paid for by someone else. That is the metality of liberalism and Democrats. The State is the Plantation and it keeps its members controlled and when elections come around, the State reaps its votes.

Posted by WeMadeAmistake | Report as abusive

“Why in the world would we leave the of the most important aspects of our life in the hands of greedy corporations whose only concern is profits.” -imgibson.IMGIBSON, you quickly forget that hospitals are private entities that get paid as private corporations. By definition, by going to a hospital or a doctor’s office, you are entrusting your care to a “greedy corporation”. Would you like the government to acquire all hospitals from the private sector to better control healthcare costs?

Posted by Joseph | Report as abusive

The good news is I applaud the US Postal Service for cutting $12 billion in expenses. The bad news is they still lost -$4.8 billion. Ok, stay with me on this and draw the trend line so we can see where we are going . . .Amtrak-bankruptUS Post Office-bankruptMedicare-bankruptMedicaid -bankruptSocial Security-bankruptdeficit-doubling in sizeinterest on the debt-doubling in sizeCongressmen & Governors under investigation for corruption (bribery and influence peddling)- 14 at leastCongressmen thrown in prison this week- 1 for accepting $500 million in bribesdays Obama has run a major corporation-zero in his lifetimeObama’s economic advisor-Larry SummersClinton’s economic advisor that protected the derivatives Ponzi scheme causing the Great Recession-Larry SummersBarney Frank quote-”there is no problem with Fannie Mae”Barney Frank’s boyfriend for BJ’s-executive of sub-prime lending for Fannie Mae (made $20 million off Frank’s protection racket)blocked regulation of sub-prime lending and derivatives–Barney Frank and Chris Doddcurrent heads of Congress Banking and Finance Committee–Barney Frank and Chris Doddmember of same committee that chastises them constantly, as well as the Fed-Ron PaulThomas Jefferson quote-”a central bank is a greater threat to a republic than a standing army”projected deficit-$1.4 trillion this year alonecurrent U.S. debt-$12 trillionamount of debt needed to be paid off to get the U.S. debt to income ratio in line (150%)- $34 trillionchance of paying off $34 trillion while running a -$1.4 trillion debt-zeroConnect the dots! Then vote in 2010 and 2012 for ANYONE except who we have now. I will never vote for anyone in any party for any office that is not committed to fiscal conservatism, restraint and a decrease in the size of our government.

Posted by silly rabbit | Report as abusive

Would you rather have a “greedy” private insurance company you can sue for recourse or a government bureaucracy that you cannot? Medicare currently denies a greater portion of claims — by far — than any of the greedy private companies.

Posted by Jean Love | Report as abusive

It is not the government’s right or responsibility to force citizen A to pay for citizen B’s healthcare. The democratic party needs to change its name to the “socialist party”, because that’s what it is.

Posted by HTS | Report as abusive

now were getting dressed down by the chinese??? what has that incompetent idiot ibn baraka al hussein maobama done to our country???

Posted by jinx13 | Report as abusive

The Chinese are worried about their investment and we all know why. Health care will ruin this economy and cause hyper inflation down the road, which would devalue the dollar. Our loan to the Chinese would be worthless. What we should be very worried about is what this man-child president is negotiating with the Chinese. He can’t even bow correctly to the Ahikito or the Saudi King. He’s a kid who’s pretending to be a world leader. God help us all.

Posted by Harlo | Report as abusive

That is an excellent point – when a health care company denies a claim you can take them to court. Once the Feds own your healthcare you will do what they say when they say it, with no recourse whatsoever. Can’t sue the Feds because supposedly, that is like suing yourself. Ask any small business owner, who can’t afford their own lobbyists or have no money to donate to their local Fed’s campaign slush funds, what it’s like dealing with the federal c”rats” on a daily basis. Nightmare!

Posted by ceeceee | Report as abusive

There is some validity to those of you who “hate” big business, but government is not the answer. Our federal government is in place to (suprisingly) govern, regulate, and defend. The (federal) government should not be in the business of anything else. We do need overall healthcare (not cutely named insurance) reform. All Americans need to take more responsibility. We need to realize that a blue pill, a yellow pill, and two white pills a day will not make us healthier and happier. There are, without a doubt,individuals who need daily medicine- take it. Why, though, is obesity and depression ramping up? Turn off the televisions and the computer, go for a walk, eat a little less, talk to a loved one- don’t let the tv, a doctor, or pharma convince you more pills are the answer. Just yesterday a study showed that over the counter Niacin was just as effective as some cholesterol. Let the government cut the 500billion in spending as promised, penalize/tax pharma more (see the recent Pfizer fine)for pushing pills for purposes not approved, etc. Institutions have let us all down, but government is not the answer. I would think we would all be shocked by the discussion that are dem and rep representatives have behind closed doors. cheers

Posted by Richard Smith | Report as abusive

it seems the overwhelming majority of these comments are against obamacare. yet, we will have it forced down our throats. i wonder when, if ever, americans will stand up and fight. the Constitution says it is a government “by the people” and that we have a right to change the government when it no longer works. now that sounds like real “change”.

Posted by silver fox | Report as abusive

The change we need is for individuals, rather than government or corporations, to accept responsibility for their own health and lifestyle choices. Neither the government nor an insurance company can prevent diabetes in an individual that overeats and doesn’t exercise. Before you ask what someone else is going to do for you – carefully consider what you are or should be doing for yourself !!

Posted by Diane | Report as abusive