Op/Ed: Don’t Buy What They Are Selling

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Buying and selling is in the news lately with President “at some point you’ve made enough money", “climate change is urgent and growing” Obama’s well-publicized imminent purchase of a 7,000 square foot, $14.85 million estate in Edgartown, Martha’s Vineyard.

The former POTUS’ new digs, a sprawling estate on what is considered the playground of the rich and famous, you can bet is guaranteed to survive the rising seas of climate change. Our current politicians are also on the hunt for buyers.


Beltway Insider: Trump/Middle East, Iran/Saudis, Epstein’s Bedfellows, Felicity Huffman, Eddie Money/Ric Ocasek, 2020

Sales Pitch Number One: A medical care crisis is afoot and only the government can save you. Yes, there is a crisis of rising prices and premiums after the government started meddling in the medical care market. Once health insurance became popular, by 1963 906 insurance companies wrote health and accident insurance, with 42 offering exclusively health insurance.

Now we have five companies that have cornered the health insurance market. Additionally, politically powerful hospitals continue to merge and gobble up physicians’ practices leading to up to 70 percent higher prices in geographic areas with minimal competition.

Premiums and out-of-pocket costs steeply rose after the passage of the Affordable Care Act and show no sign of going back down. In 2018, according to eHealth, the average cost of health insurance premiums was $440 for individuals and $1,168 for families – almost double the cost in 2014. The deductibles (the amount of money that you have to pay out-of-pocket before health insurance starts paying for your covered benefits) similarly rose to $4,328 for individuals and $8,352 for families.


Op/Ed: Russia, Racists, and Ridiculousness

Sales Pitch Number Two: The government-to-the rescue plan is fair and free. Now that we have had debates and the Iowa State Fair, we’ve heard enough to know that Medicare-for-All is neither free nor fair. There is a good political reason the House and Senate Medicare-for-All bills fail to provide a financing mechanism. We would have a collective national heart attack after seeing the price tag.

In 2016, the federal government spent more than $1.2 trillion on Medicare, Medicaid, and Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Total national health expenditures by all government levels and private entities were $3.3 trillion. A 2018 Mercatus Center analysis concluded that Medicare-for-All conservatively would add $32.6 to $38.8 trillion to federal expenditures during its first 10 years.

The government predicts that in 2026 the Medicare Hospital Insurance Trust fund will be depleted and total national health expenditures will be $5.7 trillion. The federal government collected about $100 billion in Medicare premiums and a total of $3.32 trillion in taxes last year. Given the projected expenditures and no cost-sharing or premiums, new ways to perform mass wallet biopsies on the populace will emerge. The simplest tool, as Senator Sanders has suggested, is to raise payroll taxes on everyone.

Moreover, with the elimination of private insurance, when the money runs out and care is rationed, only the wealthy will be able to pay for care outside of the government system. Is that fair?

Upping the ante, Senator Sanders wants to pay off some Americans’ current medical debt by taxing Americans with no medical debt. Under his proposal, only people unable to pay their medical debt would be granted relief. Those keeping up with their payments would have to continue to pay. What does “unable” mean? If they are living below the poverty level, they have Medicaid. Is it the working poor? Or is it people who failed to prioritize their medical bills over Starbucks and take-out food? Hardly fair.


Op/Ed: Medicare For Bernie and The Absentee Father

Sales Pitch Number Three: If you like your doctor you can keep your doctor, Politifact’s lie of the year. Essentially, the promise was that government would not interfere in the practice of medicine. But both state and federal government wants the final say-so in our medical care. For example, the California assembly passed a bill requiring the state Department of Public Health to review and potentially reject medical vaccine exemptions written by doctors who have granted five or more in a year.

No exceptions for doctors specializing in neurological or immunological diseases. Nationally, in order for Medicare to pay claims, physicians will be required to complete a computerized algorithm and certify that they have done so before ordering certain imaging like MRIs and CT scans. A computer will now determine whether the order is “appropriate.” Medical care by government robots will supplant individualized care – the heart of the patient-physician relationship. Who cares if the patient has a missed or delayed diagnosis?


Op/Ed: Why Nothing Permanently Sticks to Teflon Donald

As the government tries to trap physicians and patients in its restrictive bubble, independent physicians are pursuing avenues for increased choice in medical care and insurance products. Above all, we will never put the needs of the state ahead of the needs of the patient.

 

Bio: Dr. Singleton is a board-certified anesthesiologist. She is President of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS). She graduated from Stanford and earned her MD at UCSF Medical School.  Dr. Singleton completed 2 years of Surgery residency at UCSF, then her Anesthesia residency at Harvard’s Beth Israel Hospital. While still working in the operating room, she attended UC Berkeley Law School, focusing on constitutional law and administrative law.  She interned at the National Health Law Project and practiced insurance and health law. She teaches classes in the recognition of elder abuse and constitutional law for non-lawyers. She lives in Oakland, Ca.

Haute Tease

  • Election 2020: Biden To Noticias Telemundo: "Sleepy Joe Is Going to Wake Him (Trump) Up Really Quickly"

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Joe Biden speaks with Spanish-language television for the first time since announcing his candidacy. The Presidential hopeful talks about the El Paso Massacre, Immigration, the Campaign, his choice for Vice President and Trump in an Exclusive Interview with Noticias Telemundo´s Senior Correspondent Vanessa Hauc.

     
  • Assassin’s Creed Review – Intriguing and Surprisingly Good

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Assassin's Creed, from 20th Century Fox and Regency Enterprises, brings to the screen an epic battle between history and science, good and evil, free will over conditioned responses, and even nurture verses nature in a quest that crosses time.

     
  • Beltway Insider: ISIS Leader Killed; Boston Bomber Sentenced; GCC Meet; Morsi; B.B. King Passes

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    President Obama has sent Secretary of State John Kerry to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the first official state meeting since the illegal annexation of Crimea and violation of territorial sovereignty of neighboring Ukraine.

     
  • Blair Witch Review - A Super Suspenseful, Scary Good, Fright Ride

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Blair Witch, from Lionsgate and Vertigo Entertainment, presents a solidly built sequel, seventeen years in the making, that gives horror and fright a new name with heightened suspense, trepidation, unnerving edge of the seat dread.

     
  • Money News: DOW Steady in Abbreviated Trading Week, European Asian Markets Split

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The US Markets continued to show strong signs of steady growth even with an abbreviated trading week, consumer confidence and investor confidence remained strong as retailers introduced the 2014 traditional shopping season with consumer friendly incentives.

     
  • Beltway Insider:Obama Commits To Iraq; Benghazi Suspect Captured; Children Focus of Border Enforcement

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    President Obama announced, after conferring with his advisers, the newest Iraqi military policy developed after current intelligence revealed the level of insurgence, the determination of the ISIS and effectiveness of action in stopping advancement.

     
  • Beltway Insider: Obama/Eco Pledge; Syria/Aleppo; Election; Italy; Victoria Martens; National Parks

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    President Obama, in recognition of the Centennial celebration of the National Parks, signed two designations to create Maine's North Woods a National Monument and adding to Hawaii's Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument increasing protected lands to 265Million acres.

     
  • Frostbite is No Joke: 7 Tips to Stay Warm and Avoid Permanent Damage

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    When the temperature dips below freezing, it's critical to protect your skin from cold-weather health risks. Frostbite occurs when the skin – and sometimes the tissue beneath the skin – freezes due to prolonged exposure to cold temperatures. Depending on how long and how frozen the tissue, frostbite can result in severe, sometimes permanent, damage.

     
  • Puerto Vallarta’s Casa Dos Cisnes offers a Culinary Cultural Immersion for Foodie-Forward Travelers

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Whether for adventure travel or more relaxing respites, travelers are increasingly seeking regionally-authentic itineraries that offer an intimate view of local cultures with trends of being "connoisseurs of local culture" reportedly on the rise.

     
  • Designer Parfums Announces Exclusive Fragrance Partnership with Jennifer Lopez

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Prestige beauty company, Designer Parfums, announces a new fragrance partnership with world renowned actress, singer, entertainer and producer, Jennifer Lopez.  Working alongside Dilesh Mehta, Chairman and CEO of Designer Parfums, they will create new brand innovation and strategy to drive global growth.  

  • Harney & Sons Fine Tea Review - Masterful Blends, Aromatic, Bold Flavors, Transport

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Opening the canister to any Harney & Sons Fine Tea and one will immediately be taken in by the aromatic fusions of fine tea leaves, blended together to create specialty brews guaranteed to transport with each flavorful sip.  

  • Historic Notre Dame Cathedral Destroyed

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    An inferno raged through the Cathedral of Notre Dame, in Paris, France, engulfing the 850-year-old structure while stunned Parisians watched in horror from every vantage point as the flames breached the roof toppling the church towers.

     
  • Six Simple Steps to Combat The Seasonal Blah’s and Fall Blues

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Life is full of seasons, non-more effecting then the natural seasons, and as autumn approaches those who live in regions where they experience traditional seasons know that winter, good and bad, is just around the corner.

     
  • The Mountain Between Us Review & Celebrity Interview: Hany Abu-Assad, Director, Talks on the Making of This High Suspense, Ultra Engaging, Film

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The Mountain Between Us, from Chernin Entertainment and Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, offered for select media a sneak peek into one of the most highly anticipated films of the fall 2017 season followed by a casual Director conversation.

     
  • Emeril Lagasse's Las Vegas Restaurants Earn 2016 Wine Spectator Restaurant Awards; Full Dining Guide Revealed in August Issue

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Emeril Lagasse's Las Vegas restaurants have been honored for their outstanding wine programs in Wine Spectator's 2016 Restaurant Wine List Awards. Delmonico Steakhouse, Emeril's New Orleans Fish House and Table 10 are recognized among other winners from all over the globe as top destinations for wine lovers.