Thursday, January 28, 2010

The State of the Union.

I am progressive Republican that likes President Obama. I think he is one of the best speakers the American Presidency has ever seen. I am a teacher currently on service learning trip with my students in Panama. My concern is about global competition Mr. President. If we continue to leverage our debt to other countries like China will we continue to have the same standard of living that we now experience? This question is meant to be constructive criticism. I am concerned about the future of my students and my five children. When I speak with people in Panama I get the impression that the United States is in an economic slide.
I am very impressed with the way that you have tackled your own party and political interests that will benefit the country, but not your political career. When I say that I was referring to examples like the Cadillac tax on health care which unions oppose and the pharmaceutical tax which corporate interest would fight. Of course, as a republican I think the trial attorneys should have some kind of incentive to curb defensive medicine practices, but you are steering through a mine field better than I could have. My advice to you is read about the life of Abraham Lincoln in the book, “Team of Rivals”. Lincoln was able to balance competing interests in a different time when information was not instantaneous. Your task is much harder. I pray that you will be able to do the same.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Twitter to Massachusettes on #HCR

 The Commonwealth of Massachusetts currently has universal health care. The replacement of the former senate seat of Ted Kennedy is ironic. From an outside perspective we may think that Massachusetts citizen's  are rejecting the Obama health care reform bill. Actually they are rejecting the unfair cost shifting of Massachusetts money to other states like Nebraska when they are already holding ground on paying for their own citizens. 

Brown is currently leading in the polls

I am a teacher in Pennsylvania, and I can see this. Perhaps, what needs to be done is to assure the people of Massachusetts that they will have no cost increase to their existing health care plan. Here is a report from the Commonwealth Foundation about the reasons for increases in health care.

From Nathan Benfield
Commonwealth Foundation

On average, consumers’ out-of pocket healthcare costs increased 6.7% each year, while national healthcare expenditures increased by an average 9.8% each year. Increases in expenditures by private insurers, Medicaid and Medicare accounted for the majority of this excess cost growth; since 1965 private insurers’ spending has increased by an average 10.8% annually, Medicaid spending has increased by an average 15.4% and Medicare spending has increased by and average 15.6% each year.

The difference between what people are feeling in increased costs and what is actually happening is masking the crisis. The people in Massachusetts are experiencing cost increases and do not want to be a part of a bail out when they are doing the bailing and other states are watching.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Twitter Health Care Reform #HCR House - Senate Compromise

What will it take to pass the House-Senate health care compromise? There are three strategies that will target six states and three groups.

1. You can win moral legislators by tightening up regulations on abortion in specific states.
  • In Nebraska Ben Nelson
  • In Arkansas Blanche Lincoln
  • In Louisiana Mary L. Landrieu
2. You can attack your own party’s supporters which will be perceived as compromise. Senators who attack their own political capitol may find it more desirable to retire, than to run again. Senators like Christopher Dodd and Byron Dorgan are good examples.

  • Create incentives for Trial attorneys to reverse defensive medical practices.
  • Tax organized Labor’s Cadillac benefit plans.
  • Donut Hole Medicare Advantage enrollees
3. You can offer health care subsidies to states that are struggling financially from the recession.
  • California
  • Florida
  • Nevada
Nancy Pelosi is the Speaker of the House from California. Harry Reid is the majority leader from Nevada. Florida has some of the highest percentage of senior citizens in the country. A combination of all of these strategies will win comprehensive health care reform.