Sunday, July 26, 2009

Government IS the Problem, Tommy

Seems that former Governor Tommy "Stick-it-to-Em" Thompson thinks that without healthcare reform, the US economy will be crippled.

Former governor and cabinet secretary Tommy Thompson noted that health care in the United States costs $2.5 trillion a year — about 17 percent of the gross domestic product — and is expected to double by 2016. “Let me tell you why we need to fix it,” Thompson said. “First, that $2.5 trillion going to $4.6 trillion is going to prevent any company in the United States from being competitive internationally.”

He might be right. Then again, he might be wrong. Tommy sees what Tommy likes to see: more Government. In particular, more Government which requires more Tommy-related private enterprises dealing with "healthcare."

Tommy is perfectly happy to compare horse-apples and elephants to "prove" his point.

“Remember when General Motors was the largest company in America and therefore the world? Now it’s bankrupt,” he said. “What drove them into bankruptcy? The largest cost was health care.”

About $1,725 of the cost of each GM vehicle is due to health care costs, Thompson said. By comparison, he noted, Toyota has only $225 in health costs per vehicle

An 800% difference? You mean that healthcare in Japan costs only one-eighth of healthcare in the US? Or that Toyota workers are 8 times more healthy than GM workers?

Or how about this, Tommy: the UAW and GM committed mutual hara-kiri in their bargaining since 1950, demanding and offering benefits which became unsustainable, particularly when GM lost its market share due to arrogance, stupidity, and lousy products?

Tommy, your flim-flam-man rhetoric is no different than that of any other Gummint-addict.


Tommy was the Sec'y of Health/Human Services, which ran Medicare and Medicaid, right?

So what did the other speakers have to say?

Another big problem, according to Franciscan Skemp Healthcare CEO Dr. Robert Nesse, is a growing disparity between what Medicare reimburses for the Midwest versus other parts of the country.

The government paid $5,812 a year for the average Medicare beneficiary in La Crosse, compared with $16,351 in Miami, Gundersen Lutheran Vice President Jerry Arndt told the group.

So. Nesse thinks that a FedGov program (at one time managed by Tommy) is screwing Midwestern medical providers. And the FedGov, having proved its competence so very well up to now, is supposed to provide a solution?

More of the same:

Nesse said studies show that 60 percent of the money spent on health care in California is waste and over-utilization does not add to quality of care or patient satisfaction.

Mr. Nesse fails to point out that California is supporting a huge illegal-alien population due to Medicare/Medicaid regulations. S'pose that has something to do with it?

In an ad in the Capitol Hill newspaper, “Roll Call,” Gundersen Lutheran CEO Dr. Jeff Thompson joined 16 other health leaders — including Mayo Clinic CEO Dr. Denis A. Cortese — calling for Congress to reimburse based on quality and value, rather than simply the number of procedures and services

So. Drs. Thompson and Cortese think that FedGov programs are paying for the wrong things--quantity rather than quality. Dr. Cortese's letter specifically pointed to Medicare program problems--something that seems to be missing from this newspaper account. (Surprise.) (See comment # 81 on this thread.)

And now, magically, a FedGov program will "solve" this problem?

Only in the Land of BigGummint make-believe--where Tommy "Stick-it-to-Em" Thompson has been living for all his life.

ADDENDUM: A 'consultant' was quoted in the article, saying something to the effect that the US was ranked 26th or so in overall health worldwide. For more on that line of crap, see this post. Summarily, if you REALLY think that Cuba's healthcare is better than ours, perhaps you should move there.

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