NATIONAL DEBT – how much do you owe?

February 16, 2010

THE NATIONAL DEBT: DO YOU KNOW HOW MUCH YOU NOW OWE?

President Obama announced his 2011 Budget which is $3.834 trillion dollars with a projected deficit of $1.267 trillion or 8.3 percent of gross domestic product (GDP).   As of Feb. 7, our total national debt was $12,348,804,540,946.54 or $12.35 trillion which is larger than the economies of China, the United Kingdom and Australia combined, says Don C. Brunell, President of the Association of Washington Businesses. 

The national debt is growing with the spending spree in Washington, D.C.  According to the Congressional Budget Office and the Office of Management and Budget: 

  • Our national debt will grow an additional $9 trillion over the next decade, to more than $20 trillion.
  • During that time, the United States will accumulate $2.5 billion in new debt each and every day.
  • That’s $1.72 million per minute, for the next ten years. 

According to the Department of the Treasury: 

  • Foreign holders of our national debt are owed a combined total of about $3.3 trillion.
  • The top 10 countries and entities holding U.S. debt are: China, Japan, the United Kingdom, Oil Exporters, Caribbean Banking Centers, Brazil, Russia, Luxembourg, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
  • Our debt to China is approximately $776.4 billion, having grown more than $240 billion in the last year; that is more than $10,000 in debt for the average American working family — just to China.
  • The estimated population of the United States is 307,795,997 so each citizen’s share of this debt is $40,146.02. 

The National Debt has continued to increase and that is before Congress tacks on trillions for health care, cap and trade, new federal stimulus programs, and other yet to be identified spending programs, says Brunell. 

Part of the way President Obama plans to pay for his new round of spending is to eliminate the 2001 and 2003 Bush tax cuts families making more than $250,000 per year which impacts a ton of family-owned, small businesses which are the backbone of our economy and nation, says Brunell. 

Source: Don C. Brunell, “The National Debt: Do You Know How Much You Now Owe?” Olympia Business Watch/Association of Washington Businesses, February 7, 2010. 

For text:

http://www.olympiabusinesswatch.com/2010/02/the-national-debt-do-you-know-how-much-you-now-owe.html


Do you like Sweet and Sour Shrimp?

December 22, 2009

According to the last Rasmussen poll, 55% of Americans oppose the healthcare bill that is being considered in the Senate and 41% support it. Yet, the Democrats are chugging along ignoring the will of the American people.

The current healthcare bill in the Senate is giving most Americans a “sour” taste in their mouths. But for a few number of Americans this healthcare bill is satisfying their sweet-tooth craving at the expense of the majority of Americans. The “sour” taste is coming from the increase taxes, lower healthcare quality, pay now get later scheme, long-term price tag, and the payoffs/bribes to get the votes of certain Democratic Senators.

Who are those few Americans who got a “sweet” deal out of this?

  • Sen. Ben Nelson – D and Nebraska, population 1.78 million, will get $100 million plus an exemption from paying for Medicaid cost forever and ever, amen.
  • Sen. Mary Landrieu – D and Louisiana, population 4.41 million, will get $300 million to offset the Medicaid cost
  • Massachusetts, population 6.5million, $1.5 billion in Medicaid money
  • Sen. Bernie Sanders – D and Vermont, population 0.62 million, will get $10 to $14 billion
  • Sen. Chris Dodd – D and Connecticut, population 3.5 million, will get $100 million
  • Big Pharma got a deal from Obama      
    • White House agreed to oppose any congressional efforts to use the government’s leverage to bargain for lower drug prices or import drugs from Canada — and also agreed not to pursue Medicare rebates or shift some drugs from Medicare Part B to Medicare Part D, which would cost Big Pharma billions in reduced reimbursements.

 Holy cow! The second least populated state will get BILLIONS!!! That’s $16,129 to $22, 580 per Vermont resident. I am sure the millions of Americans who are unemployed would love to get that kind of money invested in creating jobs instead of paying off politicians for their votes. 

All in all 24 million Americans in those states mentioned above will get the “sweet” taste in their mouths while the remaining 280 million will get the “sour” part. 

What are the parts of this healthcare bill that gives the 280 million Americans a “sour” taste in their mouths?

  • Insurance mandates that will raise premiums by 30% (no wonder the insurance stocks skyrocketed)
  • Employers will have to pay 3x more to insure their employer (just like in California)
  • One levy would take $15 billion from sick patients with high out-of-pocket medical expenses, including elderly and low-income patients. (I wonder if that is where the $10-14 billion that Vermont will get come from??)
  • health savings account or flexible spending arrangement, there are taxes specific to those health plans, plus a third tax that would apply to all “consumer-directed” plans. (Kiss you HAS goodbye!)
  • Another levy would tax medical devices, and another would tax prescription drugs; those two taxes would increase health insurance premiums by about 1 percent, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.
  • $149 billion tax on those with high health insurance premiums; yet many face high premiums simply because they have expensive medical needs, making this yet another tax on the sick.
  • $43 billion in cuts to nursing care and therapy for homebound Medicare beneficiaries
  • health care coverage will be limited to what the government bureaucrats decide
  • for low-income women will no longer screen women below age 50.
  • government’s budgetary concerns, not patient’s health, is the determining factor for quality and access to health care
  • overcharge young individuals’ rates to cost-subsidize older individuals’ rates and if you don’t pay it, there’d be a fine of about now is 2.5 percent of your income
  • trillions of dollars in hidden tax increases (Yup. HIDDEN TAXES that will hit you like a freight train from behind.) 

SO, after all Obama’s promises of hope and change, transparency in government, fiscal responsibility, and political remaking of how government operates, after one year of Obama, it is business as usual. Just like how they have been doing it. This time in grander scale of  screwing hard working Americans. 

The Most Transparent Administration Ever. 

The Most Ethical Congress Ever.

What a joke!!!


If you only know… it will scare you, too!

December 18, 2009

If you just know…it will scare you!

Some details of the Health care bill:

  • The Reid bill (in sections 3403 and 2021) explicitly empowers Medicare to deny treatment based on cost.
  • An Independent Medicare Advisory Board created by the bill — composed of permanent, unelected and, therefore, unaccountable members — will greatly expand the rationing practices that already occur in the program.
  • Medicare, for example, has limited cancer patients’ access to Epogen, a costly but vital drug that stimulates red blood cell production.
  • It has limited the use of virtual, and safer, colonoscopies due to cost concerns.
  • And Medicare refuses medical claims at twice the rate of the largest private insurers.
  • Section 6301 of the Reid bill creates new comparative effectiveness research (CER) programs.
  • CER panels have been used as rationing commissions in other countries such as the United Kingdom, where 15,000 cancer patients die prematurely every year according to the National Cancer Intelligence Network.
  • CER panels here could effectively dictate coverage options and ration care for plans that participate in the state insurance exchanges created by the bill.
  • The Reid bill depends on the recommendations of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force in no fewer than 14 places.
  • This task force was responsible for advising women under 50 to not undergo annual mammograms.
  • The administration claims the task force recommendations do not carry the force of law, but the Reid bill itself contradicts them in section 2713.
  • The bill explicitly states, on page 17, that health insurance plans “shall provide coverage for” services approved by the task force.
  • This chilling provision represents the government stepping between doctors and patients.
  • When the government asserts the power to provide care, it also asserts the power to deny care.

Source: Dr. Tom Coburn, “The Health Bill Is Scary; Government guidelines would likely have forbidden the test I used to discover Sheila’s cancer,” Wall Street Journal, December 16, 2009.

For text:

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703514404574588842779569168.html

The mandates in the Health care bill:

Insurance coverage mandates refer to the restrictions each state sets on which type of policy can be sold legally within that market.  For example, fourteen states now require all insurance plans sold to cover infertility treatments, regardless of the patient’s need or desire for these services.  Other states ban the sale of insurance plans unless they include coverage for massage therapy, obesity surgery, pastoral care, and wigs.

Needle-phobic consumers cannot buy plans without acupuncture coverage, and teetotalers must pay for plans that include inpatient drug rehabilitation, says Dr. Linda Halderman, a General Surgeon and policy adviser in the California State Senate.

What effect do mandates have on the cost of health insurance?

  • According to the National Center for Policy Analysis, just 12 of the most common insurance mandates currently in place raise premium rates by as much as 30 percent.
  • The State of California forces over 50 such mandates on the employer-provided (group) insurance market, but not on individual plans; consequently, it costs three times more for California employers to offer insurance than if a plan is privately purchased.

In mandate-heavy states, consumers are denied the option of buying low-cost, basic health insurance plans to cover major illness or injury.  They cannot choose to save money by paying out of pocket for ten-dollar pneumococcus pneumonia vaccines and ninety-dollar mammograms, thereby reserving health insurance for significant expenses, explains Halderman.

In those states, insurance is not insurance at all — it is expensive, prepaid health care.  In other words, when Hummers and Ferraris are the only vehicles sold, people on Toyota budgets can’t afford transportation, says Halderman.

Source: Linda Halderman, “Senate’s Solution: Consumer Choice Is Dead on Arrival,” American Thinkers, December 16, 2009.

For text:

http://www.americanthinker.com/2009/12/senates_solution_consumer_choi.html

The possibility of losing your health savings account:

For an individual government mandate to compel the purchase of health insurance, another government requirement for something called “guaranteed issue” must first be enacted.  “Guaranteed issue” forces every insurance company to sell health insurance to every applicant regardless of age, health history, lifestyle or risk factors. 

In theory, this appears sound.  If health insurance companies can’t “just say no” to high-risk applicants, no one will be left without access to coverage.  Unfortunately, the law of unintended consequences trumps this logic.  Under guaranteed issue mandates, “access to coverage” becomes “access to higher premiums,” says Dr. Linda Halderman, a General Surgeon and policy adviser in the California State Senate.

For example:

  • In New Jersey and Massachusetts, unlike in California, laws were passed to force every insurance carrier to sell plans to every individual applicant; individual insurance premiums in New Jersey and Massachusetts are three times higher than those in California.
  • Washington State tried guaranteed issue, but with no way to mitigate risk, insurance carriers in the state suffered severe financial losses related to high-risk patients; they then exited the individual market; no individual health insurance plans were accessible to Washington residents at any price.
  • Sen. Hillary Clinton was not a New Yorker in 1993, the year New York State forced guaranteed issue on the health insurance market; as a result, rates for a third of all those insured increased by 20 percent to 59 percent, causing 500,000 New Yorkers to cancel their health insurance plans.

The Heritage Foundation published a 1998 study evaluating the 16 states in which the most aggressive health insurance mandates and regulations were passed between 1990 and 1994.  The goal of these individual, employer and insurance industry mandates-including individual mandates, guaranteed issue and price fixing of premiums-was to increase access to coverage and decrease the uninsured population in a given state.  The effects were than compared with the 34 states that had not enacted such regulations:

  • The two groups of states shared nearly equivalent rates of uninsured residents before the reforms.
  • But by 1996, the sixteen states with the most aggressive reforms (including New Jersey, New York and Washington) experienced a growth rate in their uninsured population eight times higher than the 34 states without such mandates.
  • Additionally, the percentage of the population covered by private or individual insurance declined.

Source: Linda Halderman, “Senate’s Solution: Consumer Choice Is Dead on Arrival,” American Thinkers, December 16, 2009.

For text:

http://www.americanthinker.com/2009/12/senates_solution_consumer_choi.html

http://www.ncpa.org/sub/dpd/index.php?Article_Category=16


This is tax, tax, and tax bill and not healthcare reform.

December 13, 2009

The CATO Institute has analyzed the Senate’s health bill. And the institute’s conclusion, TAX, TAX, and more TAX but no reform.

SENATE HEALTH REFORM PLAN PRESCRIBES HEAVY TAX DOSE

Amid double-digit unemployment, a record $1.6 trillion federal deficit and a national debt projected to double in 10 years, the Senate voted to bring to the floor a health care overhaul that will kill jobs through its myriad tax increases, says Michael F. Cannon, director of health policy studies at the Cato Institute.

For starters, consider the $500 billion in explicit tax increases:

  • One levy would take $15 billion from sick patients with high out-of-pocket medical expenses, including elderly and low-income patients.
  • If you have a health savings account or flexible spending arrangement, there are taxes specific to those health plans, plus a third tax that would apply to all “consumer-directed” plans.
  • Another levy would tax medical devices, and another would tax prescription drugs; those two taxes would increase health insurance premiums by about 1 percent, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

Also:

  • There’s another $60 billion tax that would drive health premiums higher still; if your premiums climb high enough, you’ll become subject to a $149 billion tax on those with high health insurance premiums; yet many face high premiums simply because they have expensive medical needs, making this yet another tax on the sick.
  • The legislation would increase the Medicare tax on wages above $200,000, yet divert the revenue toward new entitlement spending.
  • And lest any corner of the health care sector go untaxed, the bill would even impose a 5 percent tax on cosmetic surgeries.

Yet those are just the explicit tax increases, says Cannon.  There are trillions of dollars in hidden tax increases, too.

The Senate health care bill would impose massive tax increases on Day One and keep increasing your taxes well into the future.  Let’s hope the ensuing Senate debate exposes why job-killing tax increases are the wrong prescription for health care reform, says Cannon.

Source: Michael F. Cannon, “Senate health reform plan prescribes heavy tax dose,” Omaha World-Herald, December 2, 2009.

For text:

http://www.omaha.com/article/20091202/NEWS0802/712029999


Healthcare Update 10

December 9, 2009

If Democrats Win, Seniors Lose! As reported in the New York Times, included in the Democrats’ $460 billion of Medicare cuts is $43 billion in cuts to nursing care and therapy for homebound Medicare beneficiaries. This is critical help which is needed for the health and welfare of our parents and grandparents – to be taken away by the government!

California Model, Rationing of Care! One of the principle problems with government-run health care is that the government is the customer, not you. As a result, health care coverage will be limited to what the government bureaucrats decide, not what you as the patient needs.

This Los Angeles Times article reveals just how quickly health care bureaucrats can sacrifice patient care. In cash-strapped California, public health officials announced this week that the state’s government-provided mammogram program, “Every Woman Counts” for low-income women will no longer screen women below age 50. This is what we will be facing in health care, the government will tell us what is allowed.

Officials from the California Department of Public Health claim that the incidence of breast cancer is relatively low in women less than 50. This may be true, but what if you are in that “relatively low” number? We are talking about your life! In California, the government’s budgetary concerns, not patient’s health, is the determining factor for quality and access to health care. Under ObamaCare government-run health care, budgetary priorities rather than a patient’s health determine whether you get the health care you need.

Call Your Senator, Toll-Free! Communicate your displeasure with what they are doing? In less than five minutes, you can be on the phone with your Senator’s office, communicating your opposition to government-run health care.

Just follow this Action Army link, enter your information on the right-hand part of the screen and click TAKE ACTION!

You will see a TOLL-FREE NUMBER to reach YOUR elected representatives and a PASSWORD.

Dial the number on a touch-tone phone, enter the password and you’ll be connected as quickly as you can say Free Our Health Care NOW!

Your Senators Work for You! Believe it or not, Senators get job performance reviews: they’re called elections. For this one-third of the Senators and for every member of the House of Representatives, Election Day is less than eleven short months away.

You have an important part to play in the health care debate: letting your voice be heard. Through the Free Our Health Care Now! Action Army website, communicating with your Senators is easy and convenient. Whether through an email or a phone call, please use this website as a way of letting your elected representatives know that you oppose government-run health care and plan on expressing your dissatisfaction at the polls in the upcoming election.

Senator McCain to AARP Members: It’s Time to Cut the Card. Fighting against Medicare cuts, Senator John McCain recently proposed an amendment which would protect senior citizen benefits from the drastic cuts proposed by Congressional Democrats. McCain implored his fellow senators to “preserve the solemn obligations we have made to our seniors.” However, to McCain’s surprise, the Association for the Advancement of Retired Persons (AARP) opposed the McCain Amendment and, remaining true to its strange bedfellows, supported drastic cuts for seniors.

In a scathing assault on AARP’s infidelity, Senator McCain pointed to numerous AARP statements from the past renouncing Medicare cuts, including one as recently as just a few years ago. Clearly disappointed, McCain concluded by saying, “Take your AARP card, cut it in half and send it back. They’ve betrayed you.” Click here to see video of the speech.

The NCPA maintains a wealth of educational and resource material including better alternatives to government-run health care:

John Goodman’s Health Care Plan:
http://www.ncpa.org/pdfs/health_plan112007.pdf

Health Care Solutions:
http://www.ncpa.org/pdfs/Health_Care_Solutions_072909.pdf

Five Steps to a Better Health Care System:
http://www.ncpa.org/pdfs/Five_Steps_to_a_Better_Health_Care_System_Web.pdf

Dr. John Goodman’s Blog – Current, up-to date information on the debate:
www.john-goodman-blog.com

Heartland Institute’s Health Care Solutions:
http://www.chcchoices.org


Healthcare Update 9 – Affect on student coverage

December 1, 2009

HOW WILL HEALTH CARE REFORM AFFECT STUDENT COVERAGE?

If the health care overhaul passes, it might affect college students’ access to parental plans, employment and individual rates or an uninsured tax if colleges choose to mandate insurance coverage, says the Commonwealth Times.

According to Devon Herrick, a health economist and senior fellow with the National Center for Policy Analysis:

  • Proposals for the bill would attempt to overcharge young individuals’ rates to cost-subsidize older individuals’ rates.
  • In the individual market, where many students get coverage, rates for people with pre-existing conditions, who tend to be older, would get lower premiums.
  • Under the existing proposals, underrides for pre-existing conditions would not be permitted while limited adjustments for age would be allowed.

“A young person — maybe 20 or 22 — would be charged half of what someone 60 years old would be charged,” Herrick said.  “Of course if you don’t pay it, there’d be a fine … What (some Congress members) are talking about now is 2.5 percent of your income.”

Some members of Congress want to have tight banding for age, no underriding for (pre-existing conditions) and have some type of individual mandate where you would be required to have coverage, says Herrick.

How the individual mandate might affect students is uncertain.  The policy could be implemented through an employer mandate, says Herrick.

“Obviously (if) you’re a full-time student it may not affect you,” says Herrick.  “But it might make it harder to get that part-time job if an employer sees the chance that they might have to pay thousands of dollars more in health coverage or a fine for someone working part time.”

Source: Erica Terrini and Jillian Quattlebaum, “Health care reform affects student coverage, provides options,” Commonwealth Times, November 20, 2009.

For text:

http://media.www.commonwealthtimes.com/media/storage/paper634/news/2009/11/19/News/Health.Care.Reform.Affects.Student.Coverage.Provides.Options-3837559.shtml

For more on Health Issues:

http://www.ncpa.org/sub/dpd/index.php?Article_Category=16


Healthcare Update 8 (This is not reform… this a MADOFF style scheme)

November 25, 2009

The Senate healthcare bill that passed cloture and is now up for debate in the Senate floor is NOT healthcare reform by a long shot. 

This is more like a PAY NOW HEALTHCARE LATER. The tax proposals in this bill will take effect as soon as it is passed but the healthcare benefits will not kick in until 2014. 

What does that mean to you? 

It means that you are still going to be paying your premium and deductibles from your private insurance while your taxes are going up to pay for your healthcare. DOUBLE WHAMMY!

 Besides that, as soon as this bill becomes into law, all your medical supplies will cost more because of the new taxes on them. BAM! SCREWING YOU BOTH WAYS!

 How about the elderly? They are getting screwed in every orifice in their bodies. CUTS IN MEDICARE, HIGHER TAXES, MORE EXPENSIVE MEDICAL SUPPLIES.

 This Democrat controlled Congress sure is creative in raising our taxes but very inept in cutting the spending. By the way, the cost estimate they did would make Bernie Madoff proud. Like I pointed out earlier this is a pay now healthcare later scheme. The first five years, 2010-2014, is not factored in the cost calculation because YOU ARE PAYING FOR NOTHING. But on 2014 the real cost of the bill will hit the fan.

 From NY Post:

The CBO reports that, in their true first 10 years, the House bill would cost $1.8 trillion, and the Senate bill would cost $1.7 trillion. Pelosi would raise Americans’ taxes by $1.1 trillion over that period, while Reid would hike them by $1 trillion.

And the House bill would siphon about $800 billion from Medicare to spend it elsewhere, while the Senate bill would suck out about $900 billion.

So the financial bottom lines are almost the same.

And if we discount the bills’ claims to divert hundreds of billions of dollars from Medicare (which is already on the edge of insolvency), the CBO says the House bill would raise our national debt by about $650 billion in its real first decade, while the Senate bill would up it by $740 billion

Read more: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/opinion/opedcolumnists/prescriptions_for_disaster_lrgi3GBjbGlIZFrM8hHXJO#ixzz0Xt5ezaNZ

The Democrat controlled Senate bill by the numbers: 

2,074 — pages in the bill

$1.2 billion — cost to taxpayers per page

70 — new government programs authorized by the bill

1,697 — times the Secretary of Health and Human Services is given authority to create, determine, or define things in the bill

24 million — people left without health insurance

$8 billion — taxes levied on uninsured individuals

$25 billion — additional Medicaid mandates placed on states

$28 billion — new taxes on employers not providing government-approved plans

$118 billion — cuts to Medicare Advantage

$465 billion — total cuts to Medicare

$494 billion — revenue from new taxes/fees levied on American families and businesses

$2.5 trillion — cost for the first ten years of full implementation of the legislation

  Numerous Government and Private Studies Have Confirmed that Premiums and Costs Will Go Up Under the Majority’s Health Care Plans

 1. CBO Letter to Sen. Baucus on September 22, 2009, on premiums

 http://cbo.gov/ftpdocs/106xx/doc10618/09-22-Analysis_of_Premiums.pdf

 Additional, Updated CBO table sent October 9, 2009

http://www.cbo.gov/ftpdocs/106xx/doc10642/SFC_Subsidies_Penalties_10-09.pdf

  “Premiums in the new insurance exchanges would tend to be higher than the average premiums in the current-law individual market.”

  “People with low expected costs for health care, however, would generally pay higher premiums (all else being equal).”

 2. JCT Memorandum on the high cost plans excise tax, September 29, 2009

  “The staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation estimates that the excise tax would be mainly passed along through increases in premiums, and that many consumers respond by reducing their demand for insurance above the excise tax cap.”

  “The imposition of the excise tax on insurers can be expected to lead health insurance providers and consumers to take measures to minimize their burden from the tax. As insurers pass along the cost to the consumer by increasing price, the cost of employer provided insurance will increase.”

 3. CMS Office of the Actuary Memorandum, October 21, 2009

 http://republicans.waysandmeans.house.gov/UploadedFiles/OACT_Memorandum_on_Financial_Impact_of_H_R__3200_.pdf

  “In aggregate, we estimate that for calendar years 2010 through 2019 national health expenditures would increase by $750 billion, or 2.1 percent, over the updated baseline projection that was released on June 29, 2009. As a result, the NHE share of GDP is projected to be 21.3 percent in 2019, compared to 20.8 percent under current law.”

 4. Oliver Wyman Analysis, October 14, 2009

 http://www.bcbs.com/issues/uninsured/background/Oliver-Wyman-Report-Showing-Impact-of-Healthcare-Reform-on-Premiums-pdf.pdf

 Assuming 89 percent of the total population has health insurance, Oliver Wyman expects:

 Ø Claims in the individual market could be 50 percent higher than they are today; claims are expected to be even higher in some states, ranging between 60-73 percent higher than today.

 Ø This translates into premium increases of roughly $1,500 a year for single coverage and premium increases of roughly $3,300 a year for family coverage.

 Ø Premiums for small businesses could be 19 percent higher.

  Will federal subsidies help individuals and families afford the premium increases?

 Ø YES, for the 8 million current individual market members and 25 million uninsured earn between 100 and 400 percent of poverty and will have access to subsidies in the exchange which will help offset these cost increases.

 Ø NO, for the 18 million people, including currently uninsured and existing individual market members, are NOT eligible for subsidies through the exchange.

  The bills before Congress require certain minimum benefit levels that are higher than the average of what people are purchasing in the market today. Experts estimate 50 percent of the individual market policies purchased today and about 20 percent of the small business policies purchased today have actuarial values that are lower than what the bills mandate, which means all of those Americans will be forced to buy richer plans.

  Compliance with just these “actuarial value” benefit requirements could cause premiums for Americans purchasing coverage on their own to increase by about 10 percent; premiums for small businesses will increase by about 3 percent.

 Additional analysis released by Oliver Wyman on age rating analysis, September 28, 2009

http://www.oliverwyman.com/ow/pdf_files/OW_En_HLS_PUBL_2009_AgeRatingAnalysisFinal.pdf

 The bills restrict the ability of health plans to provide age discounts to young members by specifying certain age bands. Oliver Wyman estimates that in most states, premiums for the youngest-healthiest third of individuals would increase by 69% in Year 1 compared to reform with 5:1 age bands.

  “Age rating is widely used by insurers in setting premiums today to encourage young individuals to purchase insurance. A substantial number of young individuals do not purchase coverage even at premiums that are often under $100 per month in states that permit flexibility in age rating. Over 40% of all the uninsured are ages 18-34. Young people ages 21-24 have uninsured rates more than triple those of people aged 55-64. Too often young people think they are healthy and invincible and do not need insurance.”

 5. PriceWaterhouseCoopers Report, October 2009

http://americanhealthsolution.org/assets/Reform-Resources/AHIP-Reform-Resources/PWC-Report-on-Costs-Final.pdf

  Eventually the “Cadillac Plans” tax will start hitting Chevys and Buicks—not just Cadillac’s. PWC estimates that in many metropolitan areas, the lowest option “bronze” plan under the Finance Committee bill would be considered a so- called Cadillac plan as early as 2016.

  Public programs such as Medicare and Medicaid reimburse less than the cost of care for hospitals. The net effect of the bills before Congress will make the cost shift even more severe, raising the cost of private insurance premiums for large employers by $255 a year between 2015 and 2019. (This statistic only estimates the impacts of cost shifting from hospitals; including the impact on physicians will make the increased cost shifting even more severe.)

 6. HayGroup Analysis, October 5, 2009

 http://www.weeklystandard.com/weblogs/TWSFP/Impact%20of%20Proposed%20Health%20Care%20Reform%20Bill%20on%20the%20Nongroup%20Market%20%20-%20Hay%20Group.pdf

  Proposals such as the various excise tax provisions on various industries that raise average premiums in the market. Because of these taxes would be non-deductibility (rare for excise taxes), for every $1.00 in tax more than $1.00 would need to be passed to consumers.

 7. Milliman Analysis, July 13, 2009

(no link; study attached)

 8. Wellpoint Data on State Specific Premium Increases

http://www.wellpoint.com/newsroom/stats_facts.asp

 9. Office of the Actuary at CMS Memorandum, November 13, 2009, estimate of HR 3962

http://thehill.com/images/stories/news/2009/november/weekend111309/cmsactuarynumbers.pdf

  Speaker Pelosi’s bill would bend the cost curve in the wrong direction: National Health Expenditures would increase by a net 1.3 percent in 2019. The coverage provisions increase NHE by 3.4 percent in 2019 and the Medicare/Medicaid cuts reduce NHE by 2.1 percent in 2019. (Of course, the net 1.3 percent may be greater because the Actuary later notes that the reality of the Medicare cuts happening may be “unrealistic.”) While America spends 17 percent of our GDP on health care today—more than any other country in the world—the Pelosi bill increases that to 21.1 percent by 2019.

 Speaker Pelosi’s purported cost-savings policies won’t work: “…we estimate that most of the provisions of H.R. 3962 that were designed, in part, to reduce the rate of growth in health care costs would have a relatively small savings impact.”

 Speaker Pelosi’s bill could increase costs and hurt access to care: “The additional demand for health services could be difficult to meet initially with existing health provider resources and could lead to price increases, cost-shifting, and/or changes in providers’ willingness to treat patients with low-reimbursement health coverage.”

 Speaker Pelosi’s $1.2 trillion bill could increase the deficit because her offsets are “unrealistic”: OACT notes that the net $571 billion in cuts to the Medicare program would increase the solvency of the Trust Fund until 2022. Then OACT quickly points out that the estimated savings may be “unrealistic,” and “In addition, the longer term viability of the Medicare update reductions is doubtful.”

 10. Long-Term Cost of the America’s Healthy Future Act of 2009; As Passed by the Senate Finance Committee, October 30, 2009.

http://www.lewin.com/content/publications/Peterson_Finance_Report.pdf

  “the cost of the excise tax payments will be passed on to employers and consumers in premiums”

 “…most of the cost of the new excise taxes is passed back to employers and consumers in the form of higher premiums. In 2011, this would add $13.4 billion to premiums for private firms that continue to offer coverage.”

http://coburn.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Files.View&FileStore_id=2fd3e74b-d513-4a64-bbcc-a88f3e1739f9