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Have you heard that Sen. Reid put the public option back in the Senate bill?   And that Speaker Pelosi wants to rebrand it to make it more palatable to us idiot voters?  And that the Senate Democrats are ready to break out the champagne for the public option?    And Senator Bayh got us a break on medical device prices?

Does all that not irritate the heck out of you?  It does me, and I faxed this to Bayh, Lugar and Visclosky this morning.  Feel free to use any or all of it if you have had enough of Congress treating you like a fool.

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Image from Lolcats

The talk by Federal legislators about competitive options, state opt outs and triggers relating to current health care legislation are an insult to taxpayers. Does Senator Reid and Speaker Pelosi think voters don’t understand the context of such gimmicks? I am writing you to register my firm opposition to the public option, under whatever focus group-tested name it is slipped into legislation. That means no provisions for states to “opt” out, and no “triggers” for it to kick in if private insurers don’t meet some government-approved price level. Does Congress think the American public is too stupid to understand that the existence of opt outs and triggers assumes that a program of government control of the entire system has to be in place for those options to be offered? You can’t opt out of a program, or have to utilize it under certain conditions if it doesn’t exist in the first place. Shame on Congress for insulting voters that way.

As a concerned citizen, I oppose any and all efforts to further expand government control over the U.S. healthcare and insurance system. It will impose massive taxes on the American people, whether in the form of fines, higher insurance premiums, higher prices for medical devices or increases in state income tax rates to cover the huge expansion of Medicaid it will necessarily bring. I understand the Senate bill will now only impose about half the new taxes on medical device makers that were originally planned. How is this a victory for consumers? The price will still go up since companies pass along any higher costs of doing business.

Like most Americans, I prefer getting my health coverage through private insurance rather than the federal government. That’s because government healthcare always results in higher costs and rationing. I do not want politicians and bureaucrats dictating my health care and insurance decisions. Especially in these difficult economic times, I flatly reject any new government healthcare plan that imposes new taxes or burdens on individuals or businesses.

If Congress means what it says about its desire to make health care more affordable, look at freeing up competition instead. More competition always means lower prices and more and better products. Cloaking increased government intrusion in the health care system in the language of capitalism by calling the public option the “competitive option” or referring to it as enhancing consumer choice is a perversion of what those words mean. It’s a charade that I and millions of other taxpayers see right through, and does Congress no credit.

From CNS News, Hoyer Says Constitution’s ‘General Welfare’ Clause Empowers Congress to Order Americans to Buy Health Insurance

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House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said that the individual health insurance mandates included in every health reform bill, which require Americans to have insurance, were “like paying taxes.” He added that Congress has “broad authority” to force Americans to purchase other things as well, so long as it was trying to promote “the general welfare.”

The Congressional Budget Office, however, has stated in the past that a mandate forcing Americans to buy health insurance would be an “unprecedented form of federal action,” and that the “government has never required people to buy any good or service as a condition of lawful residence in the United States.”…

Is there any limit to Congress’s power in his view?

CNSNews.com also asked Hoyer if there is a limit to what Congress can mandate that Americans purchase and whether there is anything that specifically could not be mandated to purchase. Hoyer said that eventually the Supreme Court would find a limit to Congress’ power, adding that mandates that unfairly favored one person or company over another would obviously be unconstitutional.

“I’m sure the [Supreme] Court will find a limit,” Hoyer said. “For instance, if we mandated that you buy General Motors’ automobiles, I believe that would be far beyond our constitutional responsibility and indeed would violate the Due Process Clause as well – in terms of equal treatment to automobile manufacturers.”

Hoyer said that the insurance mandate was constitutional because Congress is not forcing Americans to buy one particular policy, just any health insurance policy.

Well, that’s a relief.  I was starting to think I lived in a police state.  More at the link.

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Weyant’s World

The video is from July, but things haven’t changed in so-called health care reform.

From Fox News, Obama Administration Drops ‘Gag Order’ on Private Health Insurer

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The federal government, in the face of allegations it was trampling on free speech, has closed its investigation of a major insurance company for allegedly trying to scare seniors with a mailer warning they could lose important benefits under President Obama’s health reform plan.

U.S. health officials announced Friday that private insurers can send seniors information on health-related issues as long as they allow their members to opt out of receiving the communications, apparently ending its probe of Humana.

“While we feel it is important to protect Medicare beneficiaries from potentially unwelcome marketing and other communications, we also recognize plans’ interest in contacting their enrollees on issues unrelated to the specific plan benefit that they contract with CMS to provide to those enrollees,” Teresea DeCaro, acting director of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Medicare Drug and Health Plan Contract Administration Group, wrote in a memo…

More at the link.

This is government by and for the people?  Congress’ Secret Plan to Pass Obamacare – CONFIRMED

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Leaders in the House and Senate have a plan to pass President Barack Obama’s sweeping health care plan by Thanksgiving without any significant participation by the American public. CNS News has confirmed the details in our September 22nd titled “Passing a Shell of A Bill: Congress’ Secret Plan to Ram Through Health Care Reform.”   Nicholas Ballasy reports “a senior aide to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) told CNSNews.com that it is ‘likely’ that Reid will use H.R. 1586—a bill passed by the House in March to impose a 90-percent tax on bonuses paid to employees of certain bailed-out financial institutions—as a ‘shell’ for enacting the final version of the Senate’s health care bill, which Reid is responsible for crafting.”…

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Essentially, Senator Reid is going to put in the legislative language himself, with the help of a few other people, behind closed doors:

…CNSnews.com has confirmed that “the actual final text of the legislation will be determined by Reid himself, who will consolidate the legislation approved by the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee and the still-unapproved legislation from the Senate Finance Committee. Reid will be able to draft and insert textual language that was not expressly approved by either committee.” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid will write the final version of Obamacare to be considered in the Senate with no input from the American people…

Then the House rubber stamps the Senate bill and rushes it into the President’s hands:

The final step in this plan is for the House to take up Obama care, without amending the legislation, and then sending that bill directly to the President for his signature. Matt Cover at CNSnews.com reports “House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) won’t rule out having the House vote on the Senate health-care bill without making any changes in it, which would allow the bill to go directly to President Barack Obama without having to pass through a House-Senate conference committee and another round of votes in the House and Senate–and a longer period of public scrutiny of what the text of the proposed law actually says.”…

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Read the whole despicable thing at the link.

Don’t worry your pretty little head about that silly little health care reform bill, darlin’, Congress will take care of it.  From the Washington Examiner, Congressional leaders fight against posting bills online

…Reps. Brian Baird, D-Wash., and Greg Walden, R-Ore., are circulating a petition among House lawmakers that would force a vote on the 72-hour rule.

Nearly every Republican has signed on, but the Democratic leadership is unwilling to cede control over when bills are brought to the floor for votes and are discouraging their rank and file from signing the petition. Senate Democrats voted down a similar measure last week for the health care bill…

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Recent Congressional adventures in transparency:

»  House energy and global warming bill, passed June 26, 2009. 1,200 pages. Available online 15 hours before vote.

»  $789 billion stimulus bill, passed Feb. 14, 2009. 1,100 pages. Available online 13 hours before debate.

»  $700 billion financial sector rescue package, passed Oct. 3, 2008. 169 pages. Available online 29 hours before vote.

»  USA Patriot domestic surveillance bill, passed Oct. 23, 2001. Unavailable to the public before debate.

Heck, even Congress doesn’t understand the bills they pass.

The Baucus Senate bill isn’t aimed at making health care affordable for everybody. It is not meant to control costs, or to prevent a holocaust of death by lack of insurance, or any of the other lies that have been used to try to sell government-run healthcare to a reluctant public. It’s designed to herd the populace into the pen labeled “Universal Coverage” by making private insurance so expensive that a government takeover becomes imperative.  It’s an all-out assault on the private market, according to Real Clear Politics:  Destroying Private Health Insurance

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…The Baucus bill includes an “individual mandate” that requires everyone to buy health insurance-but not inexpensive, high-deductible catastrophic health insurance. Instead, it imposes a requirement for pricier comprehensive coverage that pays for routine costs like annual checkups. The bill then requires that insurance companies provide coverage to people with pre-existing conditions, and that they charge customers at high risk of medical problems the same rates as those with lower risks-which means that these extra expenses will have to be paid for by raising everyone else’s premiums.

And then the Baucus bill delivers the knock-out punch: after forcing us into expensive comprehensive insurance plans and driving up the cost of those plans, the bill would impose a massive 40% tax on “gold-plated” plans-which turn out to include the health-insurance plans of many in the middle class. So that drives up the cost of insurance even higher…

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And then, when the high premiums resulting from these “reforms” result in people screaming for protection from private industry in the form of a public option and the Supermen of Congress save the day by enacting it, what then?

What should really terrify us, though, is what comes next. What happens after people have been forced out of private insurance and into government-run insurance? Well, that’s already happened for everyone over the age of 65, and Obama’s plans for Medicare gives us a preview of our future under a government-run system. As Dick Morris points out, the elderly have turned against Obama’s plan because they realize that “three-quarters of Obamacare is to be financed by slashing $500 billion from Medicare over the next ten years,” primarily by cutting the fees paid to doctors for their services…

More at the link.

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If you’re not ready to be fitted for your government-supplied nose ring, get on the phone to Congress.  Tuesday, October 6, is National Call Congress Day.  Call your Representative here and your Senators here.

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