Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Lenny Dykstra to hock Mets 1986 World Series ring to raise money for debts

Cash-strapped Lenny Dykstra’s latest money-grab comes with a familiar ring to it.

The bankrupt ex-ballplayer is auctioning off memorabilia from across his storied 12-year career - including his diamond and gold 1986 World Series championship ring.

The bidders are unlikely to include the nearly two dozen businesses and individuals who charge the hardnosed player known as Nails bilked them of millions of dollars.

The most amazin’ item available is Dykstra’s 10-karat World Series ring, symbolic of the Mets’ stunning defeat of the Boston Red Sox.

The sparkler - valued at $20,000 - bears the Mets logo, Dykstra’s name and familiar No. 4, and the words “New York Mets, 1986 World Champions, 116 Wins.”

Thanks to Booder.

Repoz Posted: September 13, 2009 at 06:46 PM | 3829 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: business, memorabilia, mets, phillies

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

Page 1 of 39 pages  1 2 3 >  Last ›
   1. Jeff R. Posted: September 13, 2009 at 07:17 PM (#3320833)
Awww, that's a shame.
   2. Swedish Chef Posted: September 13, 2009 at 07:28 PM (#3320837)
I bet the winner of that auction will find a plastic toy ring when they open the parcel.
   3. Mr. Bouton's Greenie Fetish Posted: September 13, 2009 at 09:38 PM (#3320883)
The sparkler - valued at $20,000


That's ashtray money, bro.
   4. Roger Cedeno's Spleen Posted: September 13, 2009 at 09:44 PM (#3320888)
Brutal.
Just brutal... wait, what?
I'm feeling sorry for Lenny ####### Dykstra?!
What the #### is wrong with me?
Next thing I know, I'll be tearing up after hearing about Walt Weiss getting torn apart in a freak crocodile attack...
   5. Halofan Posted: September 13, 2009 at 11:38 PM (#3320949)
So Bill Buckner will again have a chance to be on the field to celebrate winning the ring.
   6. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: September 14, 2009 at 12:19 AM (#3320955)
I agree with #4. I hate feeling sorry for the prick, but... it must really, really suck to be backed into a corner like this, forced to sell your prized possessions.
   7. Grumbledook Posted: September 14, 2009 at 12:42 AM (#3320959)
So Bill Buckner will again have a chance to be on the field to celebrate winning the ring.


Bill Buckner could pay for the ring with some of the money he's made signing pictures of himself with the ball going through his legs.
   8. Jeff R. Posted: September 14, 2009 at 12:46 AM (#3320961)
I agree with #4. I hate feeling sorry for the prick, but... it must really, really suck to be backed into a corner like this, forced to sell your prized possessions.


Have you read any of the articles written about him, especially when he was at the height of his little financial empire? Even the sucking-up articles made him out to be one of the biggest ########## in the world.
   9. Hugh Jorgan Posted: September 14, 2009 at 01:50 AM (#3320972)
I agree with #4. I hate feeling sorry for the prick, but... it must really, really suck to be backed into a corner like this, forced to sell your prized possessions.

I agree with #8. This guy is a turd. I can't feel sorry for turd. Just because he was good at something once that we like to watch does not make him better than a turd.
   10. Sweatpants Posted: September 14, 2009 at 02:07 AM (#3320975)
I feel sorry for anyone to whom that happens - jerk or not, baseball player or not.
   11. Whaddaya think of that, John Moore? Posted: September 14, 2009 at 02:24 AM (#3320980)
Reading this GQ story might change someone's mind about feeling sorry for Lenny Dysktra. Me, I still feel the same way about him as I always have...
   12. valuearbitrageur Posted: September 14, 2009 at 02:58 AM (#3320998)
I bet Lenny made 20 copies of this ring and is selling them 20 times over...
   13. The Piehole of David Wells Posted: September 14, 2009 at 02:58 AM (#3320999)
he's a bastard and this is deserved. the worst thing that will happen to him is that he'll be broke for a while and his wife will leave him.

what would make me happy is if he took this as an opportunity to improve himself and become a better person. but i'm guessing he won't. so #### him.
   14. Sweatpants Posted: September 14, 2009 at 02:59 AM (#3321001)
That was a good article. Yeah, he's a jerk, and a lot of what happened was his own fault. I still feel sorry for him, for anyone who experiences something like that.

Also, this was great:
As I get ready to leave, he asks how much a taxi to Long Island will cost. Between $50 and $100, I say. Lenny pulls out his wallet, removes a crisp $100, and hands it to me. “You got $50 change?” he asks.
   15. Hugh Jorgan Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:15 AM (#3321018)
I still feel sorry for him

Then you've got a heart of gold, because he doesn't deserve any of our sympathy. He's a turd and a horrible person. As piehole suggested, maybe he'll use this as a learning bit and become a better person.
   16. Spahn Insane, stimulus-funded BurlyMan™ Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:40 AM (#3321023)
Dykstra can eat a dick. This couldn't be happening to a nicer guy.
   17. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:43 AM (#3321024)
Dykstra can eat a dick.


I believe Lenny might take you up on that offer, if adequate compensation can be worked out.
   18. Walks Clog Up the Bases Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:49 AM (#3321026)
I remember that GQ story. It resonates a bit more now, since I've had to deal with someone who is similar to Lenny. He's a 27-year-old college sophomore who's a benefactor to a tidy trust fund. He's decided to use this trust fund to create the illusion that he's affluent not because of the fund, but because of his successful business endeavors. For the record, these endeavors include starting several half-assed publications (one an all-color, glossy magazine that he's more or less abandoned because it was such a financial disaster) under the umbrella of his one-man media firm that he presents as being a huge consulting firm in Michigan. He's never held a real job and his entire image is propped up by his rapidly depleting trust fund. To give you an idea of how this guy thinks, he's recently started a newspaper on campus that he charges $5 per copy for and $120 for an annual subscription (remember this is a weekly paper).

He lies through his teeth (i.e. says he lives in DC and has his operations out of New York when he's always been stationed in mid-Michigan) and carries himself in a similar fashion as Dykstra. He'll tell you blurt out mid-conversation about something expensive he really bought or how he travels the world regularly, all unsolicited from the other person.

And like Dykstra, he's a piece of ####, more concerned with perpetuating a facade of wealth and success, when his entire existence is a house of cards. People like this can be seen as tragic figures, but at the root of it, they're more concerned with preserving this image, even if it's at the expense of others.
   19. Anonymous Observer Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:35 AM (#3321037)
Who is a more miserable human being, Dykstra or Rose?

AO
   20. Walks Clog Up the Bases Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:36 AM (#3321039)
Has Rose ever promised anyone a MacBook Air?
   21. with Glavinesque control and Madduxian poise Posted: September 14, 2009 at 06:52 AM (#3321051)
Dykstra.

Rose is a guy who made a lot of bad decisions, but the only people he ###### besides himself were the fans that believed in him. Now, I don't want to play down how terrible that is, but....actually, it turns out, I do. It was bad for Rose to disappoint his fans, but we tend to exaggerate exactly how much worse the lives of those fans were. They continued to live lives very similar to how they were before, and seriously, there was a certain self-delusion in sticking up for Rose for so many years (sorry, Bill). Pete Rose was a hyper-competitive guy who liked to gamble, and whose standard-issue professional-athlete perfect self-confidence let him believe that it was okay for him, the superstar Pete Rose. That's certainly a tragic flaw (in the sense that it caused a just downfall), Rose deserves what he gets, but it's not clear to me that it makes Rose a terrible person.

Lenny Dykstra is a terrible person. I remember Billy Beane's stories about Dykstra in Moneyball. Dykstra is dumb as a bag of bricks, he decided he was gonna be rich, ####### it, and if he had to screw with the lives of every person he personally came into contact with for him to be rich, well, then so be it. That's what gets me about Dykstra: he didn't just screw a bunch of nameless families like the guys at Enron (also terrible people, for the record), he ###### with a bunch of people he worked with every day, who he convinced to come work for him for what seems to be the sole purpose of being ###### with by Lenny Dykstra. He owes millions of dollars to people for services rendered he voluntarily requested without any reasonable expectation of being able to pay for them. Rose is a giant liar, and he undercut the integrity of the game. Dykstra stole from people he knew personally, and personally caused them grief and pain. GQ dude got off lucky; he was just out $3k + a week's pay and a late mortgage payment, but that's still worse than anything Rose ever did.

#### Lenny Dykstra.
   22. The Piehole of David Wells Posted: September 14, 2009 at 07:23 AM (#3321056)
is there any chance at all that he could do prison time?
   23. Jeff K. Posted: September 14, 2009 at 08:31 AM (#3321061)
He pulls up an e-mail he sent to the other candidate, ending their negotiation: “THE EYES CHICO THEY NEVER LIE.”

I always knew he was crazy, but I thought it was Jimmie Walker style "you so crazy". I didn't know he was actually batshit insane. Who does this?

(EDIT) To be fair, when this happened on the first day or so:

On that same tour, he suggests that perhaps senior editor Chris Frankie and I could come in and do the painting ourselves some weekend. And that new MacBook Air he’d promised during my interview? Lenny asks if I’d mind using my personal laptop instead.

pretty much everything afterward is entirely predictable. Like I've told more than one friend whose company has asked them to wait a day or a week to cash their payroll check, "Cash it and never go back." You just don't recover if it's to that level.

(EDIT2) I swear I posted that before I read the very next paragraph: Lenny, it seems, does not exactly have a handle on the cash-flow aspect of running his business. I’m informed by other employees that I should deposit my paycheck as soon as I receive it, as Lenny sometimes moves money out of his accounts, and once it’s gone—well, good luck. Previous employees, I learn, have left when their paychecks never materialized; Lenny openly calls such employees “losers,” “not gamers,” or “quitters.”
   24. Jeff K. Posted: September 14, 2009 at 08:46 AM (#3321063)
Jesus, this article just gets worse and worse. "I put three darkies and a chick on my first four covers, so nobody can call me a racist"? Followed by an even more appalling racial slur? To an employee, on speaker phone? Man, am I glad I've hated this guy for nearly 25 years now.
   25. Greg Goosen at 30 Posted: September 14, 2009 at 09:23 AM (#3321064)
I'm going to check the pants pockets in my closet for loose change to see if I have $20,000 to buy this ring.
   26. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: September 14, 2009 at 10:38 AM (#3321067)
Meanwhile, there are thousands of Lenny Dykstras running health insurance companies. You've got about as much chance of getting your money back from them.
   27. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 12:12 PM (#3321079)
Rose is a guy who made a lot of bad decisions, but the only people he ###### besides himself were the fans that believed in him.

And the wife he cheated on and abandoned. And the daughter he shunned for being fat. And the son who spent his whole life trying and failing to be good enough.

But who's counting?
   28. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 12:43 PM (#3321088)
Reading this GQ story might change someone's mind about feeling sorry for Lenny Dysktra. Me, I still feel the same way about him as I always have...

Read the article guys, I just did. Couldn't happen to a nicer guy. I hope he ends up in jail.
   29. Jeff K. Posted: September 14, 2009 at 12:52 PM (#3321093)
I'm going to check the pants pockets in my closet for loose change to see if I have $20,000 to buy this ring.

$7000 is ashtray money. $20000 is clearly in "change jar" territory. A small one.
   30. TedBerg Posted: September 14, 2009 at 01:26 PM (#3321118)
This bucks the trend of hocking 1986 Mets World Series rings for cocaine.
   31. Spahn Insane, stimulus-funded BurlyMan™ Posted: September 14, 2009 at 01:30 PM (#3321121)
Dykstra can eat a dick.

I believe Lenny might take you up on that offer, if adequate compensation can be worked out.


Heh.

I should clarify: *a* dick, not mine. I don't want that dirtball's tobacco-ravaged mouth anywhere near my own junk.
   32. valuearbitrageur Posted: September 14, 2009 at 03:09 PM (#3321188)
Meanwhile, there are thousands of Lenny Dykstras running health insurance companies. You've got about as much chance of getting your money back from them.


Probably because health insurance companies are some of the least profitable businesses there are, and look to become even less profitable in the future. I'm helping an Oregon based startup with business planning, and the state insurance department releases an annual report of great detail on the few remaining health insurers in the state. It shows how much they've jacked up rates over the last 20 years, how the state has substantially increased it's regulation of health insurance over that period, and how those businesses are marginally profitable at best now. Then it concludes the answer is even MORE regulation.
   33. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 03:15 PM (#3321191)
Rose is a guy who made a lot of bad decisions, but the only people he ###### besides himself were the fans that believed in him.

And the wife he cheated on and abandoned. And the daughter he shunned for being fat. And the son who spent his whole life trying and failing to be good enough.

But who's counting?
Not you, because you forgot the bookies he stiffed.
   34. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: September 14, 2009 at 03:26 PM (#3321201)
Meanwhile, there are thousands of Lenny Dykstras running health insurance companies. You've got about as much chance of getting your money back from them.

Probably because health insurance companies are some of the least profitable businesses there are, and look to become even less profitable in the future. I'm helping an Oregon based startup with business planning, and the state insurance department releases an annual report of great detail on the few remaining health insurers in the state. It shows how much they've jacked up rates over the last 20 years, how the state has substantially increased it's regulation of health insurance over that period, and how those businesses are marginally profitable at best now. Then it concludes the answer is even MORE regulation.


That must be terrific consolation to the many thousands of people whose claims those insurance companies have turned down over the years, after cheerfully collecting their premiums.
   35. valuearbitrageur Posted: September 14, 2009 at 03:38 PM (#3321215)
That must be terrific consolation to the many thousands of people whose claims those insurance companies have turned down over the years, after cheerfully collecting their premiums..


You mean thousands of folks who cheated to get health insurance at substantially unprofitable rates by lying about pre-existing conditions? Those folks who drive up the cost of insurance for me and you?

Look, the president's examples have been largely debunked in the media. Have health insurance companies improperly denied coverage before? Sure, it happens occasionally. But they have to protect themselves from fraud, and if you are too zealous about fraud protection, some small part of the time you'll be wrong.

This is all of course great examples of modern healthcare regulation/thinking, which is that anyone anytime should get good coverage regardless of pre-existing conditions, ensure that good coverage costs double or triple what it should cost if insurance companies could actually price based on risk. Essentially the healthy and foresightful pay a heavy tax for those who don't want insurance until they are really sick, and then want it at the same price.
   36. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 03:45 PM (#3321225)
   37. GregQ Posted: September 14, 2009 at 03:46 PM (#3321226)
Health insurance companies companies operating in California are required by state law to truthfully submit data on denied claims to the California Department of Managed Care.

Data reported by the insurers to the California Department of Managed Care from 2002 through June 30, 2009 revealed that six of the largest insurers operating in California rejected 47.7 million claims for care or 22 percent of all claims.

Rejection of care is a very lucrative business for the insurance giants. The top 18 insurance giants racked up $15.9 billion in profits last year.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/blogs/ybenjamin/index#ixzz0R624iqSi


Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/blogs/ybenjamin/index#ixzz0R61hjhYh
   38. BDC Posted: September 14, 2009 at 03:49 PM (#3321228)
great examples of modern healthcare regulation/thinking, which is that anyone anytime should get good coverage regardless of pre-existing conditions, ensure that good coverage costs double or triple what it should cost if insurance companies could actually price based on risk. Essentially the healthy and foresightful pay a heavy tax for those who don't want insurance until they are really sick, and then want it at the same price

Sounds to me like the argument for single-payer universal healthcare in a nutshell :)
   39. Gaelan Posted: September 14, 2009 at 03:52 PM (#3321231)
I broke my ankle in the States. It required surgery, a titanium plate, screws, the whole bit. The insurance company tried their best to not pay the claim. Is a broken ankle a pre-existing condition?

Health insurance companies are a parasitical disease on society. There is a dark, dark, place waiting for everyone who aids and abets them.
   40. Covfefe Posted: September 14, 2009 at 03:56 PM (#3321234)
While I'm not a 'public option' absolutist, I just have a hard time seeing how one fills in the cracks in the system without it.

At a most basic level, treatments for health issues that ALL of us are bound to face at least one of, at some point in our lives... cancer, dialysis, heart disease, etc are far too expensive for the overwhelming majority to afford out of pocket. A single chemo treatment - and this is not counting tests, surgeries, etc - can cost as much as $100,000. A week of kidney dialysis can run $20K.

Yet - the free market paradigm seems to break down when it comes to health insurance. One doesn't generally know how good his or her insurance is until they really need it, and at that point - you're stuck with what you have, good or bad. No carrier is going to be looking to pick up new beneficiaries that are destined to be nothing more than red ink. So - we enter a vicious cycle where the system spits out formerly solvent people, who were paying into it - but essentially have to reach the point of qualifying for Medicaid/etc.

I don't necessarily believe a single payer system is the best way to go -- I look at Japan in particular, who probably boasts the best system in world when you look at all the metrics -- and they do it with a mix of private and public programs.

Somewhere between Japan and Switzerland looks like the best answer to me... You have what are essentially zero-profit base policies that cover basic and preventive care (regular check-ups, age/history appropriate screenings and tests) -- then pool the catastrophic cost risks, while the private insurers turn their profits on everything in between.

I think we answered the question 25 years ago on whether health care is a 'right' or a 'privilege' -- I have seen no one of any note advocating the repeal of EMTALA. So - now we have to work out how to pay for it more efficiently. We've had a generation of test cases that have increasingly sought to privatize even public programs - and all we've seen happen is an acceleration of the rate in which health care costs eat up GDP.
   41. McCoy Posted: September 14, 2009 at 03:58 PM (#3321236)
Over the weekend a lot of the TeaParty organizers stayed in the hotel I work at and let me just say that as a group I have never run across a more high maintenance, selfish, greedy group of customers in my life. I didn't come to this conclusion after I found out what their message was but before it. I remember sitting in the cafeteria eating dinner when HLN had one of the organizers on for an interview and I just started laughing when I heard his talking points. His views were not in harmony with his groups actions at the hotel. Probably the most common word out of people's mouth at the hotel was "free" as in they want this for free they want that for free so on and so on. Plus they gave off a pretty big racist vibe as well.
   42. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:00 PM (#3321241)
Seriously, anybody who wants to argue that Pete Rose isn't as big an ####### as Dykstra needs to read Pat Jordan's article "The War of the Roses". It ran in the April 1989 issue of GQ, and was reprinted in The Best Sports Writing of Pat Jordan.
   43. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:04 PM (#3321245)
Look, the president's examples have been largely debunked in the media. Have health insurance companies improperly denied coverage before? Sure, it happens occasionally. But they have to protect themselves from fraud, and if you are too zealous about fraud protection, some small part of the time you'll be wrong.


Yes, and if 100% of your profits come from avoiding "fraud", you'll probably spend a lot of effort on "zealous" "fraud protection", and a large part of the time you'll be wrong. Where "wrong" means "right", profits-wise.
   44. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:05 PM (#3321246)
"Over the weekend a lot of the TeaParty organizers stayed in the hotel I work at and let me just say that as a group I have never run across a more high maintenance, selfish, greedy group of customers in my life."

I was in DC for the weekend for a college friend's birthday, and I ran into some on the subway coming back from their protest.

McCoy's account is pretty accurate in all respects, at least as far as the ones I saw.
   45. Ray (RDP) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:06 PM (#3321247)
I see Andy has hijacked another thread.
   46. Covfefe Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:10 PM (#3321248)
I see Andy has hijacked another thread.


At this point, I'm not so sure there's really much point in further "Dykstra is a #########\" discussions... If there's a thread ripe for jacking, this one is probably it. For those wanting more discussions on Dykstra's #############, I have no doubt we'll get another any day now.
   47. JPWF13 Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:10 PM (#3321250)
Sounds to me like the argument for single-payer universal healthcare in a nutshell :)


Basically.

There are a few insurance companies that get into financial trouble by continuously paying out more in claims than they take in by premiums. (Reliance was a major exception example) However, insurance companies can get into trouble other ways as well.

To grossly oversimplify:

1: Insurance company determines that if it insures X # of people against Y (Y could be sickness, or death, or fire, whatever), it will (overtime) payout 100 in claims.
2: Insurance company needs to determine what the "overhead" for administering that insurance program is, salaries, rent, etc.
3: Insurance Company also needs to make $, or: No one will start an insurance company, or no one will invest in one.
4: Ok, now the Insurance Company will set premiums.

Problems:
1: The insurance company can screw up in determining what it will payout in claims, maybe it turns out not to be 100, maybe it turns out t be 90, or 150, there may be a change in the law, in medicine, a really expensive new treatment for an old disease goes mainstream, maybe there is a hurricane, and the courts decide your flood exclusion is inapplicable...
2: The insurance company errs on "overhead" they pay more for salaries and rent and whatnot than foreseen.
3: The insurance company anticipates that it will make 20% on the premium money taken in because it invests it before it starts paying out claims, and it makes only 5%, or NEGATIVE (This is, overly simplified, in someways, what happened with AIG- It also happened to at least 2 malpractice carriers that I'm aware of, both of whom immediately began lobbying for tort reform, falsely claiming that they lost money due to jury awards...[which they had actually- but no more than they had expected when setting premiums in the 1st place])


Basically insurance companies get into trouble when they fail to predict the future.
They fail to predict how much they pay out in claims
They fail to predict how much $ the money they take in will earn before they payout on claims
They fail to predict how much it will take to administer everything
   48. McCoy Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:11 PM (#3321251)
I see Andy has hijacked another thread.

This is why BTF can be so much fun at times because it seems at some point almost every single topic one could want to talk about will get brought up. I was looking for a place to bring up the TeaParty and poofda here it was.
   49. JPWF13 Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:12 PM (#3321253)
"Over the weekend a lot of the TeaParty organizers stayed in the hotel I work at


I just want to know where were these guys when Bush II was expanding the budget deficit and proposing the "Patriot Act"...
   50. McCoy Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:14 PM (#3321254)
I just want to know where were these guys when Bush II was expanding the budget deficit and proposing the "Patriot Act"...

They were supporting it because by and large they didn't think it would touch them. He wasn't touching their money and he was trying to get those ethnic people.

They definitely had the attitude of I got mine, you go figure out how to get yours, but I'm going to make sure that I still stay on top while you try to get yours. In otherwords I'm going to try my hardest to make sure you stay on the bottom so that I stay on the top.
   51. JPWF13 Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:17 PM (#3321258)
I just want to know where were these guys when Bush II was expanding the budget deficit and proposing the "Patriot Act"...

They were supporting it because by and large they didn't think it would touch them. He wasn't touching their money and he was trying to get those ethnic people.


That's a bit more... polite than I would put it.
   52. Covfefe Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:18 PM (#3321261)
I just want to know where were these guys when Bush II was expanding the budget deficit and proposing the "Patriot Act"...


Heh... I suggested to one of my mild-mannered conservative friends over the weekend that Obama's big mistake in the health care reform discussion was not just sending Paul Wolfowitz up to the hill to testify that "Health Care Reform would probably pay for itself" - I've never seen the fellow go from zero to rage quicker.
   53. Ray (RDP) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:21 PM (#3321264)
I just want to know where were these guys when Bush II was expanding the budget deficit and proposing the "Patriot Act"...


? Plenty of conservatives were upset that Bush was expanding the budget deficit.

But what liberals don't seem to be able to grasp is that people see health care as not simply a money issue; they see it as something that affects their lives in profound ways. That's why they're rising up. Not because of latent "racism." How silly. But it proves what was said before Obama won the election: criticism of his policies would be painted as being driven by racism. That prediction is being born out now, and the behavior of leftists in making the racism charge is not pretty to watch.

And so people can't be upset that Obama wants to fundamentally change the health care they receive, and that he's telling lie after lie about it; they have to be racists. Whatever.
   54. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:23 PM (#3321265)
Thanks Gaelan!

I'd love to chime in here on all sort of health care related things, particularly zonk's thoughtful #40, but, alas... Instead:

I'm not endorsing all of the analysis or conclusions drawn by this piece (nor could I if I wished), but I recommend that people read the health care piece in this month's Atlantic. It takes a tack I wish I'd see more often in these debates - focusing on current systemwide incentives - to fix the system, you need to treat the causes, not the symptoms.
   55. McCoy Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:24 PM (#3321266)
But what liberals don't seem to be able to grasp is that people see health care as not simply a money issue; they see it as something that affects their lives in profound ways. That's why they're rising up. Not because of latent "racism." How silly. But it proves what was said before Obama won the election: criticism of his policies would be painted as being driven by racism. That prediction is being born out now, and it's not pretty to watch.

It is hard not to bring up racism after talking to a large amount of people that traveled to Washington to protest health care reform.
   56. RJ in TO Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:25 PM (#3321267)
Is a broken ankle a pre-existing condition?


Did you have the ankle when you acquired the insurance? It sure sounds like that ankle was a pre-existing condition.
   57. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:26 PM (#3321268)
"That's why they're rising up. Not because of latent "racism." How silly. But it proves what was said before Obama won: criticism of his policies would be seen as being driven by racism. That prediction is being born out now."

One of the subway Tea Party attendees in my train car had a "Where's the Birth Certificate?" sign, and his companion was wearing a hat with a Confederate flag on it.

Maybe I ran into the only two racists in the crowd, though.
   58. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:31 PM (#3321271)
I largely agree with you, Ray/53. That said, I do think that what I'll instead call "otherism*" is a contributing factor (which also mainfests itself in other ways, like the birthers, etc...) and added to the vitriol you see here (meaning Tea Party types, etc...) - which is a main part of the story. Visible American conservatism is becoming more homogenous and more angry (at change they're not dictating, whether it comes from government or other sources).

* - This includes racist elements, sure, but it's overly reductive (among other things) to dismiss the larger group as racist.
   59. Covfefe Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:35 PM (#3321275)

? Plenty of conservatives were upset that Bush was expanding the budget deficit.

But what liberals don't seem to be able to grasp is that people see health care as not simply a money issue; they see it as something that affects their lives in profound ways. That's why they're rising up.


Upset to what end? I suppose you can naysay the NYT - but programs passed under Obama thus far and planned are still a much smaller fraction of the deficit than are the continuation of Bush era programs.

I understand that most libertarian and conservative primates were likewise opposed to Iraq -- but in all seriousness, the costs there just absolutely DWARF any domestic programs. Even the most expensive health care reform option is likely to cost less than over 10 years (perhaps half) as Iraq has and will end up costing. I know it's beating a dead horse, but I frankly just don't think those on right really grasp the idea that what we've spent on Iraq wasn't magic money... it has to be paid for, too.

The "right's" problem in the reform debate is that any salient points they might have or real contributions get buried in nonsense.

When the plan for fighting reform relies heavily on people who insist "the government keep its hands off Medicare" or that seriously push some idiotic idea that bills before congress truly do call for federally mandated euthanasia... well...

I see little difference between the teabaggers and the Code Pinkers or 9/11 truthers that plagued the left. Different side of the same crazy coin.
   60. Dr. Vaux Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:35 PM (#3321276)
Count me as another whose broken bone was denied by my insurance company (I'd had that insurance for over a year at the time.)

And of course, now I don't have insurance at all. This is one of the rare times when my public policy stance is one of self-interest, though I would favor a public option even if I had cushy insurance (as I have had for the past four years, but like millions of others . . .).
   61. Ray (RDP) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:37 PM (#3321277)
I guess the question is whether we'd see the same behavior if Hillary won and was proposing radicalizing the health care system, and was lying about it at every turn, instead of Obama doing so. I think we would.
   62. ?Donde esta Dagoberto Campaneris? Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:41 PM (#3321278)
Come on Ray, that would be because of sexism. Try to follow along would ya.
   63. Traderdave Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:42 PM (#3321280)
I'll second that Atlantic piece, and go so far as to say all in this thread should stop posting and read it, then come back to the discussion.
   64. Ray (RDP) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:46 PM (#3321281)
I understand that most libertarian and conservative primates were likewise opposed to Iraq -- but in all seriousness, the costs there just absolutely DWARF any domestic programs.


And once more: the "town hallers" aren't railing against costs, but against increased and socialized government control over their health care.

You're completely missing the boat by focusing on "costs" in a vacuum.

When the plan for fighting reform relies heavily on people who insist "the government keep its hands off Medicare" or that seriously push some idiotic idea that bills before congress truly do call for federally mandated euthanasia... well...


The issue is not federally mandated euthanasia but is the necessary rationing that has to occur under Obama's "plan." Even if adding 46 or 30 million people to the health care system were not to increase costs (an absurd notion in its own right), the infrastructure (doctors, nurses, hospitals) isn't there to support that increase. Either way, health care has to be rationed. And who is first in line for that? Seniors who Obama would, by his own words, give a "pain killer" to in lieu of a pacemaker.

(*) I use the term "plan" loosely, since he hasn't presented any; even he ridiculously admitted during his speech -- he tried to pretend it was incidental -- that "there are still significant details to be worked out."
   65. McCoy Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:55 PM (#3321286)
Yep the teaparty guy on HLN screamed out socialism right at the beginning which I kind of laughed at. It was so 1950's of him and of course he doesn't mind any of the programs that actually benefit him. He then went on to explain why he didn't like our current format of government. He doesn't want the people to have a say. He wanted to go back to the old days when the populous didn't elect senators and therefore senators wouldn't have to listen to the majority and could do what they wanted. Which was pretty munch blatant code for saying too many minorities are out there and politician now have to listen to them so my view is being threatened and since it is being threatened I don't want those minority voices being listened to. It was surreal. The guy was up there saying that the people want government health care but because he was against it we shouldn't do it and furthermore we should take their votes away.
   66. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 04:56 PM (#3321287)
"I guess the question is whether we'd see the same behavior if Hillary won and was proposing radicalizing the health care system, and was lying about it at every turn, instead of Obama doing so."

This is the second time you've mentioned Obama repeatedly lying about the program.

What statements, specifically, are you talking about?
   67. Jeff R. Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:01 PM (#3321289)
And once more: the "town hallers" aren't railing against costs, but against increased and socialized government control over their health care.


Really? "Socialized government control?" All those people are going to start building their own roads and bridges so they don't have to rely on "socialized government control"led infrastructure? None of those people are going to take advantage of the socialized Social Security payments they're eligible for at age 65? They do realize that employer-sponsored health care is pretty much an accident of history, right?

The issue is not federally mandated euthanasia but is the necessary rationing that has to occur under Obama's "plan." Even if adding 46 or 30 million people to the health care system were not to increase costs (an absurd notion in its own right), the infrastructure (doctors, nurses, hospitals) isn't there to support that increase. Either way, health care has to be rationed. And who is first in line for that? Seniors who Obama would, by his own words, give a "pain killer" to in lieu of a pacemaker.


Honest question: Is rationing required? Are doctors and hospitals so completely booked up that they can't handle anymore patients?
   68. Tom Nawrocki Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:02 PM (#3321290)
Yeah, I don't think it's racism that motivates these people. They would hate Hillary just as much. They would hate John Edwards just as much.

As the back-to-school speech shows, it doesn't even have anything to do with their policies. They just hate Obama and oppose everything he does because he's a Democrat.
   69. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:05 PM (#3321291)
At the end of the day, the whole health care debate comes down to two things:

1) How much healthcare is a right vs. a consumer good? i.e. what is the minimum level of health care that we want to guarantee everyone?
2) Do you want to have the remainder of health care spending rationed by the government or rationed by price?

That's it in a nut-shell.

If I could design my perfect healthcare system from scratch it would include:
1) A network of county hospitals and free clinics to treat the indigent. Anyone could use them, but if you were above a certain income threshhold, you'd be charged based on your income. The care would be good, but basic. Heart transplants, $100,000 a year cancer treatments etc. are not going to be covered.
2) The only type of health insurance permitted to receive a tax deduction is high deductible catastrophic coverage with a medical savings account attached.

This system I would hope would achieve 2 things 1) basic care for everyone 2) near universal coverage for catastrophic medical costs among those who can afford the premium, avoiding the cost shifting that goes on today 3) applying market discipline to most normal medical procedures, i.e. people are spending their own money
   70. Covfefe Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:05 PM (#3321292)
I'll second that Atlantic piece, and go so far as to say all in this thread should stop posting and read it, then come back to the discussion.


I've read the Atlantic piece previously -- for a macro look at systems worldwide, I still think Frontline's "Sick Around the World" from last April is very good... and in relation to the Atlantic piece, Japan's highly successful centrally administered beneficiary/provider tracking system is precisely what we should be looking towards.

And once more: the "town hallers" aren't railing against costs, but against increased and socialized government control over their health care.

But there's very little direct "health care" legislation in any of the bills! Beyond a few PQRI initiatives, there simply isn't much in any of the bills that legislates care providers. It's virtually all insurance related... and like I said, when we have copious anecdotes where protesters don't seem to grasp that Medicare and VA programs ARE government run.


The issue is not federally mandated euthanasia but is the necessary rationing that has to occur under Obama's "plan." Even if adding 46 or 30 million people to the health care system were not to increase costs (an absurd notion in its own right), the infrastructure (doctors, nurses, hospitals) isn't there to support that increase. Either way, health care has to be rationed. And who is first in line for that? Seniors who Obama would give a "pain killer" to in lieu of a pacemaker.


They're already in the system! What the plan does is 1)get them all paying into the system, and 2)put such care where it belongs.
   71. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:05 PM (#3321293)
I third the Atlantic piece.
   72. McCoy Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:07 PM (#3321294)
Yeah, I don't think it's racism that motivates these people. They would hate Hillary just as much. They would hate John Edwards just as much.

As the back-to-school speech shows, it doesn't even have anything to do with their policies. They just hate Obama and oppose everything he does because he's a Democrat.


I don't think it is racism towards the President but towards the people they think this will help. I remember I was in high school when the Clintons tried to push the first health care reform through back in the 90's and my home ed teacher, who up until that point was my favorite high school teacher, casually told me she was against the reform because it would go towards those good for nothing black people.

It is the same thing here. People who are against this are by and large white people who think that something will be taken away from them and given to minorities.
   73. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:09 PM (#3321295)
Honest question: Is rationing required? Are doctors and hospitals so completely booked up that they can't handle anymore patients?


It has nothing to do with space, and everything to do with the dollar amount the Government will reimburse doctors and hospitals for treatment.
   74. ?Donde esta Dagoberto Campaneris? Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:10 PM (#3321296)
Is rationing required?

Based on the President's pledge that health care "reform" be deficit neutral- yes, it is absolutely required.
   75. flournoy Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:11 PM (#3321297)
I guess the question is whether we'd see the same behavior if Hillary won and was proposing radicalizing the health care system, and was lying about it at every turn, instead of Obama doing so. I think we would.


We did, in '93 or '94 when that happened.
   76. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:11 PM (#3321298)
"Is rationing required? Are doctors and hospitals so completely booked up that they can't handle anymore patients?"

Any discussion of "rationing" in America needs to recognize the fact that we already ration care. It's just that for people without insurance, the amount of time they wait for a hip replacement is forever, instead of three months or six months or whatever.
   77. Dr. Vaux Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:14 PM (#3321302)
Well said.

By and large, any plan that's proposed is going to trade old problems for new problems, but it might just be possible to spread around the problems so that they're less catastrophic to the people who fall victim to them. A large amount of health-care is about quality of life, not life itself, and letting someone wait six months instead of three months to be able to walk might seem harsh, but not in exchange for letting someone else walk at all, who under the current system never would.
   78. Ray (RDP) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:17 PM (#3321305)
This is the second time you've mentioned Obama repeatedly lying about the program.

What statements, specifically, are you talking about?


It would be easier to list the statements that aren't lies. But for starters:

"My plan won't add to the deficit." [Doesn't pass the giggle test.]

"I'm going to pay for my plan by cutting out 'waste, fraud, and abuse' in Medicare." [As if that could be done, as if that would make enough of a dent.]

"If you like your health insurance, you won't be required to change." [No mention that your plan likely won't exist anymore.]

"Illegal immigrants won't be covered." [No mention that Democrats refused to accept the amendments requiring citizenship checks. Also if he is planning amnesty for later, this would be a lie in that regard as well.]

"The death panel thing is a lie." [Literally true, but no mention of rationing being the actual issue.]

Also the abortion thing.

His entire presentation is one big lie. Basically, he is assuring people currently in the system that "nothing will change for you." Nothing will change for seniors, nothing will change for people who currently have plans. So he is radicalizing the entire system -- yet, nothing will change for people. Except for the better, of course.

He is promising to cover tens of millions more people, and yet he claims that costs won't increase and quality won't decrease.

What _isn't_ a lie about what he's proposing?
   79. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:18 PM (#3321306)
And once more: the "town hallers" aren't railing against costs, but against increased and socialized government control over their health care.


Some of them are also railing against government funding of abortions, and the fairness doctrine, and indoctrinating children into Marxist ideology. The common thread is a fear of things that have zero chance of happening. If only our leaders realized that the opinions of people divorced from reality are not influenced by the real details of real policies.
   80. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:20 PM (#3321308)
He is promising to cover tens of millions more people, and yet he claims that costs won't increase and quality won't decrease.


Well, in every country similar to America, the equivalent of tens of millions more people are covered, costs are lower, and quality is higher, so it's at least POSSIBLE.

But it does seem likely that the cost control idea is a lie, because insurance companies will still be in charge.
   81. JPWF13 Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:23 PM (#3321311)
Ray Ray Ray
I see the outright lying coming from the Right rather than Obama
in fact
what I see is:

1: Someone on the left points out that something the Right is saying "Death Panels, illegal aliens whatever) is not true

2: The right responds, "No, it is true you are the one who is lying, the the rightists put their fingers in their ears, and alternatively says, "I can't hear you" and "Obama's lying".


Ok Ray, what is Obama lying about?
Come on, I've seen all these rightwing talking heads say Obama is lying, and when asked about WHAT, they either refuse to give specifics, give a specific which has been refuted (but the refuters are lying), or recite some argueable opinion.

It's the rightwingers I see lying, constantly, if anything could push me from the middle to the left, this would be it, left/right, the sheer unadultered lying by the right on this issue, is worse than anything else I have ever seen in American Politics in my lifetime.

The LEADERS of the right are terrified of any form of national healthcare because they believe it will be popular after it is enacted, and it will never be killed after it is enacted, and after it is enacted those seen as being behind it, ie liberals, will benefit, and those seeing as being opposed, conservatives, will be politically harmed- in other words, a repeat of the generation long liberal ascendancy after the New Deal. To them the merits of ANY national healthcare plan are irrelevent, any plan which subsequently helps any number of people harms them and their interests.

So the right has to stop healthcare reform at all costs, not particpate, not negotiate, not propose their own plan (not seriously anyway), stop it, and stop it now, the uninsured be dammed.

So as far as I am concerned most teabaggers are rotten bunch of lying scum and ignoramouses who can all rot in hell.

True Libertarians excepted of course.
   82. Ray (RDP) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:26 PM (#3321312)
Also that everyone without health insurance is "gaming the system." So all the multi-millionaires who have no reason to have plans because they can afford to pay for whatever need arises are "gaming the system."
   83. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:26 PM (#3321313)
I see Andy has hijacked another thread.

Well, we can always discuss whether Ichiro belongs in the Hall of Fame.
   84. JPWF13 Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:27 PM (#3321315)
His entire presentation is one big lie.


No Ray, your entuire post is basically ojne big lie.

I want say more because I run the risk of getting banned if I tell you what I really feel. {Plus I like your baseball posts, they show a pretty good degree of rational thinking.

{last post/rant of mine on this thread)
   85. RJ in TO Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:29 PM (#3321317)
So all the multi-millionaires who have no reason to have plans because they can afford to pay for whatever need arises are "gaming the system."


What percentage of those who are uninsured are multi-millionaires? Are we going to judge the 40M+ (or whatever the current number is) who are uninsured by some vanishingly small percentage who can afford to pay for almost anything?
   86. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:29 PM (#3321319)
Well, in every country similar to America, the equivalent of tens of millions more people are covered, costs are lower, and quality is higher, so it's at least POSSIBLE.

But they do this by providing less "high tech" care. In the UK, their "NICE" rationing board has a framework of disallowing any treatment that costs more than ~$45,000 per year of life extended. The US also substantially subsidizes drug research for the whole world.

There are merits to a different system, but everyone should just be aware that under a "European" style system those $100,000 per year miracle cancer drugs will not only be unavailable for the current uninsured, but for everyone except the very rich. And there will likely be no more of those drugs developed, once the profit is taken out of them.
   87. ?Donde esta Dagoberto Campaneris? Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:34 PM (#3321324)
I'm not getting your point JPWF, are you saying that Obama isn't lying about "reform?" He has detailed three essential prongs to his efforts (1) universal coverage, (2) no deficit increase, and (3) no detrimental effect on your existing health care. These three things, taken together, are absurd. No serious person can believe that they are part of a legitimate effort.

Couple these absurd charges with the President's willingness to lie* his ### off when it's politically opportune, and the distrust is completely rational.

* I'll be happy to rescind this charge if someone can specifically identify why Obama is opposed to SSM, and how that opposition squares with his previously articulated feelings about social justice. In short, if the guy is willing to lie about being a bigot- it's pretty damned hard to pretend he won't lie about anything else.
   88. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:36 PM (#3321326)
I liked the Frontline series as well, zonk (thought about mentioning it after seeing your mentions of Japan and Switzerland), though my reading of their situations suggests that the series' depictions of those other systems were too rosy.
For those who read the Atlantic piece and gravitated toward his arguments, check out Wikipedia's (yeah, wikipedia, I know) article on HSAs, focusing on sections 5 and 6. [Note: I, myself, have an HSA that has mostly worked well for me. I'm also young-ish, healthy (or at least a very low utilizer of services), and have my kids on my spouse's richer conventionally structured PPO plan.]

On rationing: Every system will have it (private or public, insured or not) - the questions are how explicitly are you doing it and where and how do you set thresholds.
   89. Ray (RDP) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:36 PM (#3321328)
Well, we can always discuss whether Ichiro belongs in the Hall of Fame.


Yes, that was amusing. I was called a troll for discussing Ichiro in an Ichiro thread.
   90. Covfefe Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:36 PM (#3321329)
"My plan won't add to the deficit." [Doesn't pass the giggle test.]

"I'm going to pay for my plan by cutting out 'waste, fraud, and abuse' in Medicare." [As if that could be done, as if that would make enough of a dent.]


Gotta disagree here - and since I've spent the last 10 years working for an info systems and software provider specifically in the Medicare area, it's an area I know a fair bit about. There is an absolute ton of inefficiency to be eliminated... to say nothing of the constantly rebranded Medicare Plus/Medicare Choice/now Medicare Advantage boondoggle. The plans on the able are light in dealing with the former, but do have provisions on the latter. That said, though, CMS can cut plenty of costs in program administration sans any new legislation.



"If you like your health insurance, you won't be required to change." [No mention that your plan likely won't exist anymore.]
Because? Even the most aggressive public option (the version in HR3200) likely to go anywhere would have only about 5% of Americans eligible. It's not so much an 'option' as a 'last resort' (which is why I'm not an absolutist about it). Across the entire world - nations from Taiwan to Japan to Switzerland to every where in between have enacted insurance reform generally stronger than anything in HR3200 or any of the other plans... yet - insurers have survived in those nations.

"Illegal immigrants won't be covered." [No mention that Democrats refused to accept the amendments requiring citizenship checks. Also if he is planning amnesty for later, this would be a lie in that regard as well.]
Sec 246 of HR 3200 clearly precludes any subsidies... considering the problem in our current system is free riders under EMTALA, I'm puzzled by the logic in opposing happenstance illegal immigrant purchasing of "full cost" insurance, sans subsidies. So rather than someone paying full price coverage, you'd prefer they continue slipping through the ER cracks without paying?

"The death panel thing is a lie." [Literally true, but no mention of rationing being the actual issue.]
So... I guess it's a lie if we reducio de absurdum our way to it.

Also the abortion thing.
Ditto above... None of the public option programs would include it. I guess if you want to play the game where one can trace where a dollar starts and ends up, it's included.... but by that same argument, it's covered NOW under various programs. If you want further restrictions on abortion, then I would suggest you need different legislation.
   91. Dr. Vaux Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:37 PM (#3321330)
I don't know the details of this very well, but here's my knee-jerk response:

The reason they cost $100,000 a year is because of insurance companies. If people had to pay for them themselves, a market price would be set. Amazingly, the research would still be done, because (a) pharmaceutical companies would still exist, because the drugs would still be getting paid for, and (b) most academics of all types--and that includes those in the medical field--are in it to further human knowledge and to help people, not to make oodles of money; that's just a side benefit. Those who would go into it for the money don't have the mental capacity and toughness to get through the training required, let alone produce anything; that requires passion of a non-fiduciary sort.

Also, a grand edifice of relatively useless pharmaceutical products exists because so much money can be made from them under the current system, which confuses the daylights out of both patients and doctors, and probably results in a great deal of slipshod medical care.
   92. Ray (RDP) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:39 PM (#3321331)
No Ray, your entuire post is basically ojne big lie.

I want say more because I run the risk of getting banned if I tell you what I really feel. {Plus I like your baseball posts, they show a pretty good degree of rational thinking.


Thanks, I think :-)

Look, people coming at this from different angles will see things differently. No worries.

I still don't see how the three tenets of Obama's presentation that Donde outlines in #87 can possibly be taken as serious by Obama supporters, namely:

I'm not getting your point JPWF, are you saying that Obama isn't lying about "reform?" He has detailed three essential prongs to his efforts (1) universal coverage, (2) no deficit increase, and (3) no detrimental effect on your existing health care. These three things, taken together, are absurd. No serious person can believe that they are part of a legitimate effort.
   93. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:42 PM (#3321333)
The reason they cost $100,000 a year is because of insurance companies. If people had to pay for them themselves, a market price would be set.

The reason they cost $100,000 is because the development of a new drug costs billions, and when there are relatively few postential customers, the price needs to be high to spread the fixed cost.

Now if you want to talk about reducing FDA red tape to lower costs, maybe you'd have something. But the last thing a more-socialized system is going to do is reduce government bureaucracy.

Even if they only cost $50,000 p.a., if you're British, you ain't getting them.
   94. Covfefe Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:43 PM (#3321336)
I liked the Frontline series as well, zonk (though about mentioning it after seeing your mentions of Japan and Switzerland), though my reading of their situations suggests that the depictions of those other systems were too rosy.


Oh sure - Japan's problem is their rather draconian method of negotiating rates with providers. They're too heavy-handed, as the Frontline piece states -- they probably spend a bit too little on health care. Still - I think their electronic tracking and reporting system is something we should definitely shoot for. I think there are structural changes in Japanese practice medicine that we might look at (in particular, they do prenatal/neonatal care much differently than America's medical community) - but those aren't things that necessarily belong in a health insurance reform bill... They probably need to come more organically from within the practicing community.
   95. Ray (RDP) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:45 PM (#3321337)
What percentage of those who are uninsured are multi-millionaires? Are we going to judge the 40M+ (or whatever the current number is) who are uninsured by some vanishingly small percentage who can afford to pay for almost anything?


There are probably about 10 million citizens who don't have insurance and truly can't afford
it.

Of the 46 million number we always hear bandied about, my best guess is that about:

* 16 million are illegal immigrants
* 10 million are wealthy and don't need insurance
* 10 million are young people who can afford it but are making the rational decision to spend their money elsewhere
* 10 million are truly poor and truly can't afford it

Feel free to correct me. I kind of guessed at the middle two, but regardless, both of those groups can afford it.

Everyone gets emergency care, of course, whether legal or not, whether poor or not.
   96. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:49 PM (#3321342)
The reason they cost $100,000 a year is because of insurance companies. If people had to pay for them themselves, a market price would be set. Amazingly, the research would still be done, because (a) pharmaceutical companies would still exist, because the drugs would still be getting paid for, and (b) most academics of all types--and that includes those in the medical field--are in it to further human knowledge and to help people, not to make oodles of money; that's just a side benefit. Those who would go into it for the money don't have the mental capacity and toughness to get through the training required, let alone produce anything; that requires passion of a non-fiduciary sort.

Now my wife's industry! (It was fun in November voting for a guy whose election could, potentially, lead to the loss of both my and my wife's jobs.)

Well, a market price is set now, it's just artificially high.
You would still have some of that research being done, but there would unquestionably be less of it (for better or worse - probably a bit of both). As for b) - I think that's somewhere between disingenuous and irrelevant. There's a lot of ways to help people - unquestionable, changing how we and what we pay for drugs would have a significant impact on what's produced. Maybe less research on frontier-type cancer/AIDS/etc... drugs, maybe more work on generally unprofitable immunizations. Maybe less re-branding/packaging/formulating campaigns (where a lot of current profit, as I understand it, comes from). Money will flow where it can generate a profit, period.

Those who would go into it for the money don't have the mental capacity and toughness to get through the training required, let alone produce anything; that requires passion of a non-fiduciary sort.
I can say with certainty that this isn't true. [I am not saying most researchers lack passion for what they do - I am saying it's not a prerequisite.]
   97. Meatwad Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:49 PM (#3321343)
ray im one of the 10 mil truly cant afford it. i need this reform.
   98. Ray (RDP) Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:50 PM (#3321344)
ray im one of the 10 mil truly cant afford it. i need this reform.


Who's paying for your internet connection?
   99. Jeff K. Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:51 PM (#3321345)
This still cracks me up.

From the brief snippet of "explanation" (read: crazy talk at 1/4 volume) Lenny gives there, it almost sounds like he's doing the pseudo-numerology that you'll see on infomercials. Think the ones with the boxes glowing green and red. (I'm trying and failing to recall the name for this type of 'valuation'...the only thing I can find that matches is 'feedback trading', and that's not the term I'm thinking of.) Anyway, people who believe in this #### for anything other than very, very marginal profit opportunities that are rapidly growing more scarce the faster Goldman's computers go are complete ####### loons.
   100. Meatwad Posted: September 14, 2009 at 05:55 PM (#3321348)
Im not, hell i cant afford to have my own place to live.
Page 1 of 39 pages  1 2 3 >  Last ›

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

News

All News | Prime News

Old-School Newsstand


BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Harry Balsagne
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

Sox TherapyFeeling A Draft - Part II
(10 - 1:11am, Jun 23)
Last: Dillon Gee Escape Plan

NewsblogKyle Schwarber headed back to Triple-A Iowa
(31 - 1:05am, Jun 23)
Last: Brian C

NewsblogBeyond the Box Score: On the lack of interest in Albert Pujols’s 600 HR and Adrián Beltré’s pursuit of 3,000 hits
(49 - 1:04am, Jun 23)
Last: Dillon Gee Escape Plan

NewsblogOTP 19 June 2017: Bipartisan baseball: Dems best GOP, give trophy to wounded Scalise
(775 - 12:57am, Jun 23)
Last: The Yankee Clapper

NewsblogOT - March 2017 NBA thread
(6997 - 12:54am, Jun 23)
Last: Athletic Supporter wants to move your money around

NewsblogJarrod Dyson breaks up perfect game with bunt – and Justin Verlander isn’t mad
(29 - 12:54am, Jun 23)
Last: vortex of dissipation

NewsblogRecounting the many ways baseball has changed in 20 years
(19 - 11:50pm, Jun 22)
Last: Ray (RDP)

NewsblogMy OMNI has a second name, it's CHATTER, for June 22, 2017
(45 - 11:45pm, Jun 22)
Last: Dillon Gee Escape Plan

NewsblogYour 2017 MLB local broadcaster rankings
(48 - 11:27pm, Jun 22)
Last: cardsfanboy

NewsblogNegro Leagues Baseball Museum receives $1 million gift from MLB, players union
(10 - 10:52pm, Jun 22)
Last: Alex meets the threshold for granular review

Sox TherapyWitty Minor League Thread Title Here
(35 - 10:45pm, Jun 22)
Last: Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo

NewsblogThe Mets Are Pissed At Yasiel Puig For Admiring His Homer
(52 - 10:35pm, Jun 22)
Last: The Duke

NewsblogA’s owners say moving four miles to new stadium will create $3B in economic benefits, I’m done | Field of Schemes
(33 - 9:53pm, Jun 22)
Last: McCoy

NewsblogPablo Sandoval placed on the disabled list with an inner ear infection
(33 - 9:50pm, Jun 22)
Last: 6 - 4 - 3

NewsblogOT Gaming: October 2015
(664 - 9:04pm, Jun 22)
Last: 6 - 4 - 3

Page rendered in 0.7874 seconds
47 querie(s) executed