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DRIVEWAY
01-06-2011, 04:31 PM
http://www.aolhealth.com/2011/01/06/blue-shield-rate-hike/?icid=main%7Chp-laptop%7Cdl3%7Csec4_lnk2%7C193857

The need for price controls throughout the healthcare industry is long overdue.

lamboguy
01-06-2011, 05:05 PM
when the healthcare bill becomes law there will be no such thing as denying you for pre-existing conditons. however there will be a penalty for not carrying health insurance. its cheaper to pay the penalty than to pay the insurance and once you need the insurance you just pay the premium. i am doing that already in mass. i saved about $5000 for the year after penalty. i had the misfortune of having to get health insurance. i paid the premium for 1 month and then dropped the insurance. i made sure i did everything that i needed within the month including physical, blood work, colonoscopy, arthroscopic surgery and mri, and physical therapy.

bigmack
01-06-2011, 05:15 PM
i am doing that already in mass. i saved about $5000 for the year after penalty. i had the misfortune of having to get health insurance. i paid the premium for 1 month and then dropped the insurance. i made sure i did everything that i needed within the month including physical, blood work, colonoscopy, arthroscopic surgery and mri, and physical therapy.
Somebody tell me again about insurance companies ripping people off.

boxcar
01-06-2011, 05:36 PM
Somebody tell me again about insurance companies ripping people off.

If you have insurance, do a favor for your overactive imagination and grant it some rest with a tranquilizer shot. The evil you think you see in the state exists about as much as the tooth fairly. :D

Boxcar

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 06:04 PM
when the healthcare bill becomes law there will be no such thing as denying you for pre-existing conditons. however there will be a penalty for not carrying health insurance. its cheaper to pay the penalty than to pay the insurance and once you need the insurance you just pay the premium. i am doing that already in mass. i saved about $5000 for the year after penalty. i had the misfortune of having to get health insurance. i paid the premium for 1 month and then dropped the insurance. i made sure i did everything that i needed within the month including physical, blood work, colonoscopy, arthroscopic surgery and mri, and physical therapy.

So other Mass. h.c. policy holders who don't game the insurance system subsidized your care. I'm sure they thank you.

boxcar
01-06-2011, 06:53 PM
So other Mass. h.c. policy holders who don't game the insurance system subsidized your care. I'm sure they thank you.

And whose fault is that, Mike? Do not these state-run programs invite "gaming"? If the law itself permits rejection of coverage and that rejection, in turn, actually represents better value than if someone opted to purchase coverage, why not opt out? I would in a heartbeat and with a perfectly clear conscience. If the state is stupid enough to write this loophole into the law that favors me financially, it's incumbent upon me to do the smart thing by "gaming" it. There's noting evil in being wise as a serpent but innocent as a dove. ;)

Boxcar

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 07:03 PM
And whose fault is that, Mike? Do not these state-run programs invite "gaming"? If the law itself permits rejection of coverage and that rejection, in turn, actually represents better value than if someone opted to purchase coverage, why not opt out? I would in a heartbeat and with a perfectly clear conscience. If the state is stupid enough to write this loophole into the law that favors me financially, it's incumbent upon me to do the smart thing by "gaming" it. There's noting evil in being wise as a serpent but innocent as a dove. ;)

Boxcar

What he did was legal - you decide if it was the morally correct thing to do.

boxcar
01-06-2011, 07:10 PM
What he did was legal - you decide if it was the morally correct thing to do.

Absolutely moral! How would it be otherwise? Charity begins at home, my friend. My first responsibility is to myself and my family -- not to nameless, faceless people who aren't my neighbors in a biblical sense.

Boxcar

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 07:14 PM
Absolutely moral! How would it be otherwise? Charity begins at home, my friend. My first responsibility is to myself and my family -- not to nameless, faceless people who aren't my neighbors in a biblical sense.

Boxcar

He was consciously gaming the system at the detriment to others. I believe that's wrong.

boxcar
01-06-2011, 07:26 PM
He was consciously gaming the system at the detriment to others. I believe that's wrong.

No he wasn't! At least no more than any taxpayer would be "gaming" the tax laws by taking advantage of loopholes that were put into the law in the first place by the legislature! If other payers into the health care system are being taken undue advantage of, then that issue needs to be addressed at the source -- the legislature. All the "opt out" people are not the problem. The law is!

Having said this, these kinds of problems are not surprising with these entitlement laws that are themselves inherently immoral! Just as a bad tree cannot bear good fruit, neither can a bad law bear anything but headaches, problems and inequities.

Boxcar

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 07:33 PM
No he wasn't! At least no more than any taxpayer would be "gaming" the tax laws by taking advantage of loopholes that were put into the law in the first place by the legislature! If other payers into the health care system are being taken undue advantage of, then that issue needs to be addressed at the source -- the legislature. All the "opt out" people are not the problem. The law is!

Having said this, these kinds of problems are not surprising with these entitlement laws that are themselves inherently immoral! Just as a bad tree cannot bear good fruit, neither can a bad law bear anything but headaches, problems and inequities.

Boxcar

The opt-out people aren't the problem, I agree, unless they decide to sneak in and out of private insurance mkt whenever they need care. You may be right that the system is ill-conceived, but that still doesn't justify his actions.

lamboguy
01-06-2011, 07:41 PM
What he did was legal - you decide if it was the morally correct thing to do.
i find that quite interesting that you should make that statement. you obviously haven't visited health care places lately. a physical with a doctor spending aproxiamtely 4 minutes with the patient charges $850 for his precious time. the regular blood work is $650. a PSA test is $500. and if you have a headache and need 2 tylenol they charge you $27 for the honor of watching you stick that poison down your throat.

thank you for pointing out to me that i am taking advantage of the system

bigmack
01-06-2011, 07:46 PM
thank you for pointing out to me that i am taking advantage of the system
Ah, the classic "they had it comin'" defense. :ThmbUp:

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 07:55 PM
i find that quite interesting that you should make that statement. you obviously haven't visited health care places lately. a physical with a doctor spending aproxiamtely 4 minutes with the patient charges $850 for his precious time. the regular blood work is $650. a PSA test is $500. and if you have a headache and need 2 tylenol they charge you $27 for the honor of watching you stick that poison down your throat.

thank you for pointing out to me that i am taking advantage of the system

Yes, you gamed the system. Other policy holders in your state effectively paid for your care. If everyone behaved as you did, there would be no insurance market in Mass. Congrats.

boxcar
01-06-2011, 07:58 PM
The opt-out people aren't the problem, I agree, unless they decide to sneak in and out of private insurance mkt whenever they need care. You may be right that the system is ill-conceived, but that still doesn't justify his actions.

Even if they do that, the law permits it. Seems to me that the suckers who pay into the system, when they don't need to, have to organize a lobby and get their legislature to close that loophole. :D

Of course, you are aware that BO Care has that same provision, right? I mean...how could a reasonably healthy person (especially mentally) not resist purchasing auto insurance until after he has had an accident? :lol: :lol:

Boxcar

lamboguy
01-06-2011, 07:58 PM
Yes, you gamed the system. Other policy holders in your state effectively paid for your care. Congratulations.i didn't game a thing, i have to pay a penalty for not carrying insurance, and if i get hit by a car or have a heart attack i have to pay for the medical care. i am not stealing a thing. you still have to wait 3 days before you get the insurance.

Spiderman
01-06-2011, 08:14 PM
Somebody tell me again about insurance companies ripping people off.

It's war, us against insurance companies.

bigmack
01-06-2011, 08:24 PM
It's war, us against insurance companies.
Hell yeah. Right after we tear them a new one we'll go after the others running a rigged game. Casinos & State lotto's.

boxcar
01-06-2011, 08:29 PM
Hell yeah. Right after we tear them a new one we'll go after the others running a rigged game. Casinos & State lotto's.

Keep me posted on when the revolution begins. I hate being tardy, especially for big events.

Boxcar

boxcar
01-06-2011, 08:31 PM
i didn't game a thing, i have to pay a penalty for not carrying insurance, and if i get hit by a car or have a heart attack i have to pay for the medical care. i am not stealing a thing. you still have to wait 3 days before you get the insurance.

Exactly! You're just smart enough to pay a cut rate price. :ThmbUp:

Boxcar

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 08:41 PM
1) Even if they do that, the law permits it. Seems to me that the suckers who pay into the system, when they don't need to, have to organize a lobby and get their legislature to close that loophole. :D

2) Of course, you are aware that BO Care has that same provision, right? I mean...how could a reasonably healthy person (especially mentally) not resist purchasing auto insurance until after he has had an accident? :lol: :lol:

Boxcar

1) Just b/c a law permits something, it doesn't justify it morally. I'm surprised you don't - apparently - agree with that.

2) We've discussed healthcare before, so I think we both know who knows the details. Okay.

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 08:45 PM
i didn't game a thing, i have to pay a penalty for not carrying insurance, and if i get hit by a car or have a heart attack i have to pay for the medical care. i am not stealing a thing. you still have to wait 3 days before you get the insurance.

1) Do you believe private health insurance should be available in Mass? YES or NO.

If no, please stop here as you have no nothing to worry about. If yes, please move on to question 2.

2) You realize if everyone behaved as you behaved recently, all the private insurers would exit the state?

Dave Schwartz
01-06-2011, 08:54 PM
The opt-out people aren't the problem, I agree, unless they decide to sneak in and out of private insurance mkt whenever they need care. You may be right that the system is ill-conceived, but that still doesn't justify his actions.

IMHO, an individual cannot be held accountable for doing what the system allows.


Regards,
Dave Schwartz

lamboguy
01-06-2011, 08:54 PM
1) Do you believe private health insurance should be available in Mass? YES or NO.

If no, please stop here as you have no nothing to worry about. If yes, please move on to question 2.

2) You realize if everyone behaved as you behaved recently, all the private insurers would exit the state?i think what you don't realise is that insurance company's and other financial company's privatize profits and socialize losses.

boxcar
01-06-2011, 08:55 PM
1) Do you believe private health insurance should be available in Mass? YES or NO.

If no, please stop here as you have no nothing to worry about. If yes, please move on to question 2.

2) You realize if everyone behaved as you behaved recently, all the private insurers would exit the state?

:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: I'm sorry, Mike, but I nearly spilled my coffee when I read number 2. This is hilarious because private insurers are wee bit smarter than the state because they're in the game to make those "evil" profits and, therefore, would never emulate the state's stupid policies.

Carry on. :lol:

Boxcar

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 09:03 PM
It's war, us against insurance companies.

There are two main drivers of healthcare costs at a macro level: innovation and utilization.

Innovation examples - more and more biotech drugs to extend the lives of cancer patients (really, really expensive); better and better imaging equipment (really expensive); robotic surgicial equipment (really, really expensive)

Utilization examples - demographics, more defensive medicine, better healthcare screening awareness, consumer-based marketing

Spiderman Insurance has three main costs to cover: docs, hospitals and drugs. Innovation and utilization drive those three categories, as that happens those entities want to get paid more. Who pays for the docs, the drugs and the hospitals? Spiderman Insurance. So as the input costs* go up, Spiderman needs to charge more and premiums go up. Spiderman didn't ask Amgen or SmithKline to invent new drugs or ask the hospital to buy a new $250k piece of equipement, but as that happened those providers wanted to cover their costs. See, it isn't really the insurance companies driving higher costs it's the providers who are offering more and better services. In addition, in the late 80s into the 90s, when closed managed care networks were promoted, giving the insurance companies more pricing power over docs and hospitals, consumers balked--you can't tell me what doctor and/or hosptial I can visit. Fine, you pay more.

*Spiderman contracts annually or every couple of yrs with the providers. Spiderman doesn't want to pay the providers more, but the providers typically win out, which pushes up insurance premiums.

Now do I think all insurance companies are holy and great? Absolutely not, but I get tired of the reverse causality associated with healthcare costs.

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 09:04 PM
:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: I'm sorry, Mike, but I nearly spilled my coffee when I read number 2. This is hilarious because private insurers are wee bit smarter than the state because they're in the game to make those "evil" profits and, therefore, would never emulate the state's stupid policies.

Carry on. :lol:

Boxcar

If everyone behaved the way Lambo just did, all the private insurers would exit the state. If you disagree with that, you know nothing about adverse selection or the insurance industry. I assume you misread my prior post.

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 09:07 PM
i think what you don't realise is that insurance company's and other financial company's privatize profits and socialize losses.

We're talking about healthcare insurers now, not the financial system. Please answer the questions.

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 09:08 PM
IMHO, an individual cannot be held accountable for doing what the system allows.


Regards,
Dave Schwartz

The "system" allows a lot of behavior that is morally unacceptable.

lamboguy
01-06-2011, 09:12 PM
If everyone behaved the way Lambo just did, all the private insurers would exit the state. If you disagree with that, you know nothing about adverse selection or the insurance industry. I assume you misread my prior post.
the people in mass. that are abusing the system are the ones that claim they make less than $40,000 a year so they get a subsidy from the state called mass. health. my premiums are $800 a month, the mass health premiums are $76. i can't afford to carry health insurance on a 12 month a year ongoing basis. i have to pay my taxes and penalty's to make sure those people have great coverage at discounted prices. i didn't bargain for this system. i am not beating anything. if i am doing anything wrong they would throw me in jail as fast as grant took richmond.

boxcar
01-06-2011, 09:13 PM
If everyone behaved the way Lambo just did, all the private insurers would exit the state. If you disagree with that, you know nothing about adverse selection or the insurance industry. I assume you misread my prior post.

My point is that people can't be insured today privately, drop it tomorrow, and the want to be reinsured privately the next day and expect to be covered for their newly acquired condition. There's a waiting period! Sometimes that period can be quite long -- up to a year, I believe.

With private insurers, you're either in or out. You can't play the games that the state plan allows.

Boxcar

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 09:13 PM
the people in mass. that are abusing the system are the ones that claim they make less than $40,000 a year so they get a subsidy from the state called mass. health. my premiums are $800 a month, the mass health premiums are $76. i can't afford to carry health insurance on a 12 month a year ongoing basis. i have to pay my taxes and penalty's to make sure those people have great coverage at discounted prices. i didn't bargain for this system. i am not beating anything. if i am doing anything wrong they would throw me in jail as fast as grant took richmond.

In the past month, you've stated that you own between 10 and 20 race horses. Sell one.

Relwob Owner
01-06-2011, 09:14 PM
IMHO, an individual cannot be held accountable for doing what the system allows.


Regards,
Dave Schwartz



This is purely a personal decision but in my opinion, an individual can be held accountable for whatever they do, regardless of what the system does or does not allow. The insurance situation being debated is an example of this and the housing market is as well.....people are making decisions that fit within the rules of the system but are damaging our economy and their fellow Americans in the process.

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 09:21 PM
My point is that people can't be insured today privately, drop it tomorrow, and the want to be reinsured privately the next day and expect to be covered for their newly acquired condition. There's a waiting period! Sometimes that period can be quite long -- up to a year, I believe.

With private insurers, you're either in or out. You can't play the games that the state plan allows.
Boxcar

You realize private plans still operate in Mass, right?

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 09:23 PM
This is purely a personal decision but in my opinion, an individual can be held accountable for whatever they do, regardless of what the system does or does not allow. The insurance situation being debated is an example of this and the housing market is as well.....people are making decisions that fit within the rules of the system but are damaging our economy and their fellow Americans in the process.

Great analogy RO - anyone who can easily afford to make their mortgage payment but is well underwater (i.e., seen a sharp decline in value) should default! Hell it's legal, just a "loophole" in the system. Charity begins at home, ol' Box likes to say.

boxcar
01-06-2011, 09:50 PM
You realize private plans still operate in Mass, right?

Yes...and your point is?

Boxcar

boxcar
01-06-2011, 10:03 PM
Great analogy RO - anyone who can easily afford to make their mortgage payment but is well underwater (i.e., seen a sharp decline in value) should default! Hell it's legal, just a "loophole" in the system. Charity begins at home, ol' Box likes to say.

Actually, it's a pretty bad analogy. Sorry. :)

It is immoral to not pay your legitimate debts or to game any mortgage rules or bankruptcy laws, etc. because that is form of stealing. However, it's not immoral to legally buy any product at a discount price. And that is precisely the crux of what Lamby did. He didn't steal anything from anyone, no more than any horse player does when he cashes his winning tickets which he's does at the expense of the losing players.

Boxcar
P.S. I think I'll create a website that will act as an Analogy Clearinghouse so that everyone here can run their analogies by me first. :lol: :lol:

Tom
01-06-2011, 10:15 PM
It's war, us against insurance companies.

They are not the ones charging the huge fees for medical care.
they are the ones PAYING them.

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 10:22 PM
Actually, it's a pretty bad analogy. Sorry. :)

It is immoral to not pay your legitimate debts or to game any mortgage rules or bankruptcy laws, etc. because that is form of stealing. However, it's not immoral to legally buy any product at a discount price. And that is precisely the crux of what Lamby did. He didn't steal anything from anyone, no more than any horse player does when he cashes his winning tickets which he's does at the expense of the losing players.

Boxcar
P.S. I think I'll create a website that will act as an Analogy Clearinghouse so that everyone here can run their analogies by me first. :lol: :lol:

It's a great analogy - you dont like it b/c it might hurt you in real life, just like you don't want anything to happen to Medicare b/c it's a benefit you want in a few yrs. Yeah, you're a true conservative.

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 10:23 PM
They are not the ones charging the huge fees for medical care.
they are the ones PAYING them.

Some sanity. Thank you.

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 10:25 PM
Yes...and your point is?

Boxcar

Then your prior post makes no sense.

Relwob Owner
01-06-2011, 10:34 PM
Actually, it's a pretty bad analogy. Sorry. :)

It is immoral to not pay your legitimate debts or to game any mortgage rules or bankruptcy laws, etc. because that is form of stealing. However, it's not immoral to legally buy any product at a discount price. And that is precisely the crux of what Lamby did. He didn't steal anything from anyone, no more than any horse player does when he cashes his winning tickets which he's does at the expense of the losing players.

Boxcar
P.S. I think I'll create a website that will act as an Analogy Clearinghouse so that everyone here can run their analogies by me first. :lol: :lol:


It is a perfect analogy....both are personal decisions that use what the system allows, yet can be questioned in terms of how they damage the system on the whole and how moral the decisions are.....how can the housing example I used be a form of stealing if the system allows it?

lamboguy
01-06-2011, 10:37 PM
may hospitals should start charging $270 for 2 tylenol, why stop at $27?

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 10:37 PM
It is a perfect analogy....both are personal decisions that use what the system allows, yet can be questioned in terms of how they damage the system on the whole and how moral the decisions are.....how can the housing example I used be a form of stealing if the system allows it?

Because it might impact Box personally. It's called the Box Double-Standard, or you might want to call it hypocrisy.

boxcar
01-06-2011, 10:41 PM
It's a great analogy - you dont like it b/c it might hurt you in real life, just like you don't want anything to happen to Medicare b/c it's a benefit you want in a few yrs. Yeah, you're a true conservative.

Obviously, you don't understand the difference between buying a product and deliberately defaulting on any kind of a loan, which in essence is stealing and dishonest. The analogy stinks, as does your Medicare red herring which has zero bearing on this discussion. Try sticking with the substance of the issue at hand and forget about what you think you know about me and my dislikes.

Boxcar

boxcar
01-06-2011, 10:43 PM
Then your prior post makes no sense.

Why?

Boxcar

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 10:44 PM
Obviously, you don't understand the difference between buying a product and deliberately defaulting on any kind of a loan, which in essence is stealing and dishonest. The analogy stinks, as does your Medicare red herring which has zero bearing on this discussion. Try sticking with the substance of the issue at hand and forget about what you think you know about me and my dislikes.

Boxcar

No, Box, it's legal. It's a loophole in the system, one that might hurt you so you oppose it. I encourage everyone in south Florida to strategically default on their mortgages.

Live by the Boxcar motto: if it's legal, just do it!*

*opps unless it impacts me negatively, then don't

Relwob Owner
01-06-2011, 10:47 PM
Obviously, you don't understand the difference between buying a product and deliberately defaulting on any kind of a loan, which in essence is stealing and dishonest. The analogy stinks, as does your Medicare red herring which has zero bearing on this discussion. Try sticking with the substance of the issue at hand and forget about what you think you know about me and my dislikes.

Boxcar


When you say "in essence" your argument loses it's bite because you are letting how the act is interpreted come into play. The insurance example may be perfectly legal and buying a product but is "in essence" stealing or harming the greater good to someone else.....I agree with you that the mortgage deal is "in essence" stealing but I also think that working the insurance system as described is similar and so to me, the analogy fits....both are fine the way the system is set up and that was my point.

newtothegame
01-06-2011, 10:55 PM
People default on loans all the time as Mike is saying Box.
It is a loophole in the system. It doesnt make it right just because they can do it because it causes undo burdens on others. Look at credit cards. There is a "built" in default that card companies know will happen. They in turn, charge other cards members higher rates and interest fees because of this.
Just because people have a right to do something, doesnt make it right.
In the case of lambo and him "gaming" the system....well he has to live with his decisions. But for every action, there is a reaction. His actions cause other reactions by those same companies he is "gaming" (others words).
Look at theft, for example,...and NO I AM NOT saying anyone here is a theif....
I am just merely stating that companies will NOT loose money. YOu know this BOX...why your on the opposite side of this issue amazes me.....
Companies....when they "lose" an item either from theft, or whatever...do you think they just "accept" that loss?
Well obviously they accept it...but they in turn raise cost of goods and pass it along to the END CONSUMER.

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 10:59 PM
People default on loans all the time as Mike is saying Box.
It is a loophole in the system. It doesnt make it right just because they can do it because it causes undo burdens on others. Look at credit cards. There is a "built" in default that card companies know will happen. They in turn, charge other cards members higher rates and interest fees because of this.
.

We agree 100%. I'm adamantly opposed to strategic defaulters. If you came in late, my recent posts are laced with sarcasm.

Spiderman
01-06-2011, 11:08 PM
They are not the ones charging the huge fees for medical care.
they are the ones PAYING them.

The funds that they use for PAYING comes from the outrageous premiums consumers pay and not allowing health care for people with pre-existing conditions. We should take-up a collection of charity for the poor insurance companies.

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 11:11 PM
The funds that they use for PAYING comes from the outrageous premiums consumers pay and not allowing health care for people with pre-existing conditions. We should take-up a collection of charity for the poor insurance companies.

See post #26 - read it five times b/c you once again have reverse causality.

Tom
01-06-2011, 11:16 PM
Do they let you buy car insurance after you wreck your car?
Look up the word insurance.

You are advocating hand outs, not insurance.

Relwob Owner
01-06-2011, 11:25 PM
People default on loans all the time as Mike is saying Box.
It is a loophole in the system. It doesnt make it right just because they can do it because it causes undo burdens on others. Look at credit cards. There is a "built" in default that card companies know will happen. They in turn, charge other cards members higher rates and interest fees because of this.
Just because people have a right to do something, doesnt make it right.
In the case of lambo and him "gaming" the system....well he has to live with his decisions. But for every action, there is a reaction. His actions cause other reactions by those same companies he is "gaming" (others words).
Look at theft, for example,...and NO I AM NOT saying anyone here is a theif....
I am just merely stating that companies will NOT loose money. YOu know this BOX...why your on the opposite side of this issue amazes me.....
Companies....when they "lose" an item either from theft, or whatever...do you think they just "accept" that loss?
Well obviously they accept it...but they in turn raise cost of goods and pass it along to the END CONSUMER.



Terrific summary IMO

boxcar
01-06-2011, 11:27 PM
When you say "in essence" your argument loses it's bite because you are letting how the act is interpreted come into play. The insurance example may be perfectly legal and buying a product but is "in essence" stealing or harming the greater good to someone else.....I agree with you that the mortgage deal is "in essence" stealing but I also think that working the insurance system as described is similar and so to me, the analogy fits....both are fine the way the system is set up and that was my point.

How is buying a product similar to intentionally defaulting on a loan? Lamby, for example, did not force anyone, who is in the state pool, to participate in it in the first place. The opt-ins made that choice, presumably, with their eyes open just as Lamby made his choice to opt-out.. Shame on many of the opt-ins for not being as shrewd and economical as Lamby! Their dullness is his gain, and there's nothing immoral in that because he is not stealing from them! How can he steal from people who freely chose to participate in the state system? How is Lamby responsible for their poor choices? If someone chooses to participate in a poor plan or system, then they must be prepared to suffer the consequences. Again, Lamby could be likened to a winning horse player who wins at the expense of his losing counterparts -- and this is a perfect analogy, for in both cases purchases and pools are involved.

Conversely, when someone makes any kind of loan (mortgage or otherwise) he is entering into a contractually binding agreement with a bank or mortgage company or whatever. When that person signs on the proverbial dotted line, he agrees to pay that loan off according to its terms. If at some point in time, he decides that he's not going to pay off that loan because he's in over his head or whatever and intentionally defaults on it, he's guilty on going back on his word (via the signed contract), which makes him dishonest and he's guilty of stealing. He is morally obligated to make good on his debt, no matter what man's laws may permit to the contrary. This is so because whenever man's laws conflict with God's, God's law takes precedence because it's a higher law. (See post 111 in the Lisa Murkowski thread.)

Therefore, your analogy is a sieve that doesn't hold a drop of water. For there is not a thing in scripture that makes buying into a legitimately good deal immoral. In fact, quite the contrary. The Wise Woman in Proverbs was praised for her good business sense and entrepreneurial skills. Likewise, I praise Lamby for his!

Boxcar

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 11:29 PM
He is morally obligated to make good on his debt, no matter what man's laws may permit to the contrary. This is so because whenever man's laws conflict with God's, God's law takes precedence because it's a higher law. (See post 111 in the Lisa Murkowski thread.)

Therefore, your analogy is a sieve that doesn't hold a drop of water. Boxcar

Yes, and in this case, God would not want certain citizens gaming the system and effectively pushing up healthcare costs for other citizens.

Your analogy is a sieve RO! Once he calls you clueless, you've won the argument - don't worry it won't be long.

Spiderman
01-06-2011, 11:30 PM
There are two main drivers of healthcare costs at a macro level: innovation and utilization.

Innovation examples - more and more biotech drugs to extend the lives of cancer patients (really, really expensive); better and better imaging equipment (really expensive); robotic surgicial equipment (really, really expensive)

Utilization examples - demographics, more defensive medicine, better healthcare screening awareness, consumer-based marketing

Spiderman Insurance has three main costs to cover: docs, hospitals and drugs. Innovation and utilization drive those three categories, as that happens those entities want to get paid more. Who pays for the docs, the drugs and the hospitals? Spiderman Insurance. So as the input costs* go up, Spiderman needs to charge more and premiums go up. Spiderman didn't ask Amgen or SmithKline to invent new drugs or ask the hospital to buy a new $250k piece of equipement, but as that happened those providers wanted to cover their costs. See, it isn't really the insurance companies driving higher costs it's the providers who are offering more and better services. In addition, in the late 80s into the 90s, when closed managed care networks were promoted, giving the insurance companies more pricing power over docs and hospitals, consumers balked--you can't tell me what doctor and/or hosptial I can visit. Fine, you pay more.

*Spiderman contracts annually or every couple of yrs with the providers. Spiderman doesn't want to pay the providers more, but the providers typically win out, which pushes up insurance premiums.

Now do I think all insurance companies are holy and great? Absolutely not, but I get tired of the reverse causality associated with healthcare costs.

I am honored for mynom de web to be named for the health care revolution. I will need a better slogan than, "It's war, us against them." Will work on it between 'cappin' races.

Profit motive is rampant throughout the health care universe - each segment feeding the other, from the drug innovators and suppliers to doctors to hospitals to insurance companies. A veritable vicious cycle with the consuming public paying through the nose. Insurance premium rates and deductibles are actualized to account for high profit margins.

Consider the news, today, that an insurance company in California, Blue Cross/Shield is seeking a whopping 59% increase in premiums. Consider the portion of the national debt that has been incurred by health care costs.

Canadians pay less for the same drugs that are available in US. Americans have to cross the border to purchase these drugs. Why?

It's been argued and reported that the US pays more per capita for health care and receives less. The system needs intensive review.

boxcar
01-06-2011, 11:32 PM
People default on loans all the time as Mike is saying Box.
It is a loophole in the system. It doesnt make it right just because they can do it because it causes undo burdens on others. Look at credit cards. There is a "built" in default that card companies know will happen. They in turn, charge other cards members higher rates and interest fees because of this.
Just because people have a right to do something, doesnt make it right.
In the case of lambo and him "gaming" the system....well he has to live with his decisions. But for every action, there is a reaction. His actions cause other reactions by those same companies he is "gaming" (others words).
Look at theft, for example,...and NO I AM NOT saying anyone here is a theif....
I am just merely stating that companies will NOT loose money. YOu know this BOX...why your on the opposite side of this issue amazes me.....
Companies....when they "lose" an item either from theft, or whatever...do you think they just "accept" that loss?
Well obviously they accept it...but they in turn raise cost of goods and pass it along to the END CONSUMER.

Debts are one thing. And it is morally wrong to "game" any system to intentionally default on a debt because this is tantamount to theft. But purchases are quite something else. See my last post.

Boxcar

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 11:36 PM
I am honored for mynom de web to be named for the health care revolution. I will need a better slogan than, "It's war, us against them." Will work on it between 'cappin' races.

Profit motive is rampant throughout the health care universe - each segment feeding the other, from the drug innovators and suppliers to doctors to hospitals to insurance companies. A veritable vicious cycle with the consuming public paying through the nose. Insurance premium rates and deductibles are actualized to account for high profit margins.

2) The system needs intensive review.

1) Exactly right - profit motive drives the big insurers, which causes the insurers to lean on the providers (docs/hospitals) to control costs (what we want).

2) I agree. Here's the problem: only about 15% of all hc costs are out of the consumer's pocket. When you aren't paying for it yourself beyond a de minimus co-pay, you do nothing to control costs.

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 11:38 PM
Debts are one thing. And it is morally wrong to "game" any system to intentionally default on a debt because this is tantamount to theft. But purchases are quite something else. See my last post.

Boxcar

Again, the main difference being one case may impact Box negatively (strategic defaults in south Florida), whereas the other will not. If he were living in Mass. and 10% of the population were pulling a Lambo, pushing up his premiums, his position would be different.

newtothegame
01-06-2011, 11:39 PM
I am honored for mynom de web to be named for the health care revolution. I will need a better slogan than, "It's war, us against them." Will work on it between 'cappin' races.

Profit motive is rampant throughout the health care universe - each segment feeding the other, from the drug innovators and suppliers to doctors to hospitals to insurance companies. A veritable vicious cycle with the consuming public paying through the nose. Insurance premium rates and deductibles are actualized to account for high profit margins.

Consider the news, today, that an insurance company in California, Blue Cross/Shield is seeking a whopping 59% increase in premiums. Consider the portion of the national debt that has been incurred by health care costs.

Canadians pay less for the same drugs that are available in US. Americans have to cross the border to purchase these drugs. Why?

It's been argued and reported that the US pays more per capita for health care and receives less. The system needs intensive review.

Spider...look up the word capitalism and tell us what it means to you.....
Profit motive is rampid throughout ALL business.....unless you know of another reason that business is in business for????

That's not to say the system doesnt need review.....
But couldnt that be said for most any industry? I mean they are all in it for the profits...right???
Look at gasoline.....why are not big oil under the same scrutiny as here???
Why not the local dairy guy...hell I think milk cost too much..!!!
Why not just socialize the entire system??? Because inevitibaly that what your arguement is.
Is there not anyone who understands that prices are determined by the MARKET? Now you can sit here an talk about collaboration between companies to over inflate a market....and I will agree that there are and have been cases of such.
There is a need for regulations.....but the healthcare system needs regulations because of what??? Do any of those reasons lead back to medicare or medicaid??
I would argue that maybe...just maybe....government programs (as mentioned above) have caused part of this scenario!

Relwob Owner
01-06-2011, 11:42 PM
How is buying a product similar to intentionally defaulting on a loan? Lamby, for example, did not force anyone, who is in the state pool, to participate in it in the first place. The opt-ins made that choice, presumably, with their eyes open just as Lamby made his choice to opt-out.. Shame on many of the opt-ins for not being as shrewd and economical as Lamby! Their dullness is his gain, and there's nothing immoral in that because he is not stealing from them! How can he steal from people who freely chose to participate in the state system? How is Lamby responsible for their poor choices? If someone chooses to participate in a poor plan or system, then they must be prepared to suffer the consequences. Again, Lamby could be likened to a winning horse player who wins at the expense of his losing counterparts -- and this is a perfect analogy, for in both cases purchases and pools are involved.

Conversely, when someone makes any kind of loan (mortgage or otherwise) he is entering into a contractually binding agreement with a bank or mortgage company or whatever. When that person signs on the proverbial dotted line, he agrees to pay that loan off according to its terms. If at some point in time, he decides that he's not going to pay off that loan because he's in over his head or whatever and intentionally defaults on it, he's guilty on going back on his word (via the signed contract), which makes him dishonest and he's guilty of stealing. He is morally obligated to make good on his debt, no matter what man's laws may permit to the contrary. This is so because whenever man's laws conflict with God's, God's law takes precedence because it's a higher law. (See post 111 in the Lisa Murkowski thread.)

Therefore, your analogy is a sieve that doesn't hold a drop of water. For there is not a thing in scripture that makes buying into a legitimately good deal immoral. In fact, quite the contrary. The Wise Woman in Proverbs was praised for her good business sense and entrepreneurial skills. Likewise, I praise Lamby for his!

Boxcar


You say "buying a product"....that is how you view it.....I, and some others view it as working the system in a way that harms others(just like the mortgage example) and the analogy stems from that.... I have no clue what religion has to do with it but you seem to love interjecting it for whenever you can.....where you tripped up is that if you go by your Wise Woman in Proverbs example, defaulting on a mortgage can often make good business sense for the person involved(many are even calling it a "business decision")....so, she would approve of it, no?

You say my analogy is a "sieve"....well, your thought is based upon the idea that what people are doing with their mortages is stealing, which it isnt...it is taking an agreement that you made and agreeing to face the consequences that you agreed to when you made it.....it just so happens that there are no real consequences due to the holes in the system.

boxcar
01-06-2011, 11:42 PM
Yes, and in this case, God would not want certain citizens gaming the system and effectively pushing up healthcare costs for other citizens.

Your analogy is a sieve RO! Once he calls you clueless, you've won the argument - don't worry it won't be long.

Quote me chapter on verse on what you think God wouldn't want. (Never mind, you wouldn't know where to begin or how to begin.) Don't forget: The people who opt-in to the system are there by their own free choice, just like people at the track are! Those"other citizens" need to beg, borrow or steal some smarts to understand what they've bought into! And that is NOT Lamby's responsibility. He is not responsible for other people's choices! :bang: :bang:

And moreover, it's not as though Lamby hasn't paid anything into the system. He is also part of that pool -- but has decided to participate in a way that entitles him to a "discount". He's not getting a free ride, just a cheaper one. ;)

Boxcar

Spiderman
01-06-2011, 11:47 PM
1) Exactly right - profit motive drives the big insurers, which causes the insurers to lean on the providers (docs/hospitals) to control costs (what we want).

2) I agree. Here's the problem: only about 15% of all hc costs are out of the consumer's pocket. When you aren't paying for it yourself beyond a de minimus co-pay, you do nothing to control costs.

1) I don't think that insurers lean hard enough. They do have tables for all type of malady, but the rates are still too high.

2) I assume that 15% does not include insurance premiums

newtothegame
01-06-2011, 11:49 PM
Debts are one thing. And it is morally wrong to "game" any system to intentionally default on a debt because this is tantamount to theft. But purchases are quite something else. See my last post.

Boxcar

No, BOX, they are not different. Purchases are in essence the SAME as debt because in order to have a debt, you must first make a purchase. In the case of healthcare, your purchase in the care you agree to recieve by going to a hospital or treatment center.
The system is set up as such as where you can "insure" yourself against the cost of potential needs in the system. If you chose too NOT PURCHASE insurance, then you should get EVERY LAST PENNY OF THOSE COST, no matter what!
When people, who are UNinsured recieve treatment, and then default on that DEBT, that debt is passed along to other consumers in the insurance fields.
Sorry, but that is WRONG. Legal, but WRONG!
If you want to regulate the insurance industry and fix problems, lets make it a LAW that no losses can be passed on to other consumers.....
Want to guess what would happen?
People would be scrutinized too no end and people who show up to medical facilities withOUT insurance would be denied healthcare.
Yet you talk about death panels and how you are against them.
The road you are leading down would potentially ensure that not only would there be death panels (at your local physician) determined by your ability to pay a bill, you wouldnt have to worry about it being government controlled.
Healthcare is a scary topic....it needs fixes....
But chosing to USE the sytem when convenient is NOT the answer in my opinion!

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 11:50 PM
Quote me chapter on verse on what you think God wouldn't want. (Never mind, you wouldn't know where to begin or how to begin.) Don't forget: The people who opt-in to the system are there by their own free choice, just like people at the track are! Those"other citizens" need to beg, borrow or steal some smarts to understand what they've bought into! And that is NOT Lamby's responsibility. He is not responsible for other people's choices! :bang: :bang:

And moreover, it's not as though Lamby hasn't paid anything into the system. He is also part of that pool -- but has decided to participate in a way that entitles him to a "discount". He's not getting a free ride, just a cheaper one. ;)

Boxcar

Spare me your sanctimonious crap - rather than constantly quoting the Bible to me and others, you might want to take action occassionally to actually help the less fortunate. Charity goes well beyond the home, and that doesn't make me a liberal.

There's an interesting story about the great columnist Bob Novak. He had just converted to Catholicism from Judaism, and his friends and family were holding a small get together for him afterward. Former NY Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan was at the event, and he said, “Well, we've now made Bob a Catholic. The question is, can we make him a Christian?”

Saratoga_Mike
01-06-2011, 11:52 PM
1) I don't think that insurers lean hard enough. They do have tables for all type of malady, but the rates are still too high.

2) I assume that 15% does not include insurance premiums

not the employer piece.

boxcar
01-06-2011, 11:52 PM
You say "buying a product"....that is how you view it.....I, and some others view it as working the system in a way that harms others(just like the mortgage example) and the analogy stems from that.... I have no clue what religion has to do with it but you seem to love interjecting it for whenever you can.....where you tripped up is that if you go by your Wise Woman in Proverbs example, defaulting on a mortgage can often make good business sense for the person involved(many are even calling it a "business decision")....so, she would approve of it, no?

You say my analogy is a "sieve"....well, your thought is based upon the idea that what people are doing with their mortages is stealing, which it isnt...it is taking an agreement that you made and agreeing to face the consequences that you agreed to when you made it.....it just so happens that there are no real consequences due to the holes in the system.

It is stealing according to the bible. All manner of theft if forbidden, regardless of what our man-made laws say. God judges the thoughts and intents of the heart, my friend -- something the state cannot do very well. Not only is theft forbidden but all manner of greed and envy is also forbidden, and these two sins are almost always associated with material possessions (including money).

And regarding the "system" -- yes, people who pay into the pool every month (I presume) are buying something! :bang: :bang: They're not donating their money to charity, are they? They are buying a health care product -- for better or for worse.

Boxcar

Spiderman
01-06-2011, 11:53 PM
Spider...look up the word capitalism and tell us what it means to you.....
Profit motive is rampid throughout ALL business.....unless you know of another reason that business is in business for????

That's not to say the system doesnt need review.....
But couldnt that be said for most any industry? I mean they are all in it for the profits...right???
Look at gasoline.....why are not big oil under the same scrutiny as here???
Why not the local dairy guy...hell I think milk cost too much..!!!
Why not just socialize the entire system??? Because inevitibaly that what your arguement is.
Is there not anyone who understands that prices are determined by the MARKET? Now you can sit here an talk about collaboration between companies to over inflate a market....and I will agree that there are and have been cases of such.
There is a need for regulations.....but the healthcare system needs regulations because of what??? Do any of those reasons lead back to medicare or medicaid??
I would argue that maybe...just maybe....government programs (as mentioned above) have caused part of this scenario!

Knew when I was writing that post, someone would raise the socialist banner. Did not feel the need for writing a disclaimer that profits are good, exorbitant profits at the expense of our economy, not good.

newtothegame
01-06-2011, 11:55 PM
Knew when I was writing that post, someone would raise the socialist banner. Did not feel the need for writing a disclaimer that profits are good, exorbitant profits at the expense of our economy, not good.
Define "exorbitant profits at the expense of our economy"????
I would argue that term is different for EVERYONE so who do we suit the system for? The poorest guy in the food chain?
In that case, lets make dairy farmers, big oil, my accountant , etc etc all work for less :)

Relwob Owner
01-07-2011, 12:04 AM
It is stealing according to the bible. All manner of theft if forbidden, regardless of what our man-made laws say. God judges the thoughts and intents of the heart, my friend -- something the state cannot do very well. Not only is theft forbidden but all manner of greed and envy is also forbidden, and these two sins are almost always associated with material possessions (including money).

And regarding the "system" -- yes, people who pay into the pool every month (I presume) are buying something! :bang: :bang: They're not donating their money to charity, are they? They are buying a health care product -- for better or for worse.

Boxcar



You think it is stealing and try and take your opinion to the Bible for an interpretation and backup. Slick move but transparent....your Wise Woman in Proverbs example actually says it is a good thing because it is a good business decision for the person, no? You didnt answer that one.....


Also, you do quote the Bible quite a bit and it shouldnt be a problem to find the part where it is says that it is good to condescend to another person like you did to Saratoga M when you said in post number 63"Quote me chapter on verse on what you think God wouldn't want. (Never mind, you wouldn't know where to begin or how to begin.).......I anxiously await that passage.

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 12:09 AM
You think it is stealing and try and take your opinion to the Bible for an interpretation and backup. Slick move but transparent....your Wise Woman in Proverbs example actually says it is a good thing because it is a good business decision for the person, no? You didnt answer that one.....


Also, you do quote the Bible quite a bit and it shouldnt be a problem to find the part where it is says that it is good to condescend to another person like you did to Saratoga M when you said in post number 63"Quote me chapter on verse on what you think God wouldn't want. (Never mind, you wouldn't know where to begin or how to begin.).......I anxiously await that passage.

That's ok - he missed the whole part about Christ's humility.

Spiderman
01-07-2011, 12:11 AM
Define "exorbitant profits at the expense of our economy"????
I would argue that term is different for EVERYONE so who do we suit the system for? The poorest guy in the food chain?
In that case, lets make dairy farmers, big oil, my accountant , etc etc all work for less :)

What does the butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker have to do with the NATIONAL health care issue? You can defend Big Oil in another thread.

bigmack
01-07-2011, 12:13 AM
Spidermoon is tangentially going adrift with his resentment of insurance Co's. His points are best addressed in another thread/venue.

What lambo did was within the legal guidelines of the system but no one could make a point that if done en masse it wouldn't bring down the entire operation. The expectation is that folk will "do the right thing."

A buffet offers all you can eat. He walks in with Tupperware and pockets aplenty and stuffs enough food to last a month. Not illegal, but not right.

So too, a website offers content on a monthly basis and someone signs for a month and downloads everything and steps off.

All perfectly legal but those that do such things have to feel rather sheepish about doing so.

newtothegame
01-07-2011, 12:18 AM
What does the butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker have to do with the NATIONAL health care issue? You can defend Big Oil in another thread.
Nice how you sidestepped my question......
But, to answer yours, healthcare (as you described the "profits) are not much different then any other industry.
My question again is define exorbitant profits and who is to dtermine that by what measure?

DRIVEWAY
01-07-2011, 12:21 AM
There are two main drivers of healthcare costs at a macro level: innovation and utilization.

Innovation examples - more and more biotech drugs to extend the lives of cancer patients (really, really expensive); better and better imaging equipment (really expensive); robotic surgicial equipment (really, really expensive)

Utilization examples - demographics, more defensive medicine, better healthcare screening awareness, consumer-based marketing



Great points.

Should we have a form of centralized planning which says certain equipment can only be supported by xxx population and/or yyy geography? Example New York City would qualify based on this formula for 5 new whatamacallits. In our current healthcare system 17 are sold and installed in NYC. Pricing is calculated to show a profit on all 17 whatamacallits. Can the Federal/State Government impose the 5 whatamacallits limit or pricing that would support 5 whatanacallits?

This is an essential planning element in other countries such as Canada.

Spiderman
01-07-2011, 12:27 AM
Nice how you sidestepped my question......
But, to answer yours, healthcare (as you described the "profits) are not much different then any other industry.
My question again is define exorbitant profits and who is to dtermine that by what measure?

No, regulation of profits cannot be administered in any manner, other than arbitrarily. However, the cost of health care is crippling the economy and accounts for double-digit line item expense.

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 12:28 AM
Spidermoon is tangentially going adrift with his resentment of insurance Co's. His points are best addressed in another thread/venue.

What lambo did was within the legal guidelines of the system but no one could make a point that if done en masse it wouldn't bring down the entire operation. The expectation is that folk will "do the right thing."

A buffet offers all you can eat. He walks in with Tupperware and pockets aplenty and stuffs enough food to last a month. Not illegal, but not right.

So too, a website offers content on a monthly basis and someone signs for a month and downloads everything and steps off.

All perfectly legal but those that do such things have to feel rather sheepish about doing so.

Another sensible post. Thank you.

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 12:30 AM
Great points.

Should we have a form of centralized planning which says certain equipment can only be supported by xxx population and/or yyy geography? Example New York City would qualify based on this formula for 5 new whatamacallits. In our current healthcare system 17 are sold and installed in NYC. Pricing is calculated to show a profit on all 17 whatamacallits. Can the Federal/State Government impose the 5 whatamacallits limit or pricing that would support 5 whatanacallits?

This is an essential planning element in other countries such as Canada.

Already in place on a state-by-state basis -- called certificates of need (CONs), covering things like nursing homes, home health agencies and imaging.

Spiderman
01-07-2011, 12:35 AM
Spidermoon is tangentially going adrift with his resentment of insurance Co's. His points are best addressed in another thread/venue.

What lambo did was within the legal guidelines of the system but no one could make a point that if done en masse it wouldn't bring down the entire operation. The expectation is that folk will "do the right thing."

A buffet offers all you can eat. He walks in with Tupperware and pockets aplenty and stuffs enough food to last a month. Not illegal, but not right.

So too, a website offers content on a monthly basis and someone signs for a month and downloads everything and steps off.

All perfectly legal but those that do such things have to feel rather sheepish about doing so.

And, to that, a goodnight to all!

boxcar
01-07-2011, 12:52 AM
No, BOX, they are not different. Purchases are in essence the SAME as debt because in order to have a debt, you must first make a purchase.

But...not all purchases incur debt. You are right -- in that a loan is a product that you've contractually agreed to pay off over time.

In the case of healthcare, your purchase in the care you agree to recieve by going to a hospital or treatment center.

Huh? I don't live in Mass, so I don't know how it works, but I assume that when people to chose to "opt-out", they pay "x" amount as a penalty or fee in a lump sum. Or if they opt-in, they pay "y" on a monthly or quarterly basis? Someone could, theoretically, pay into the system virtually forever and receive little or no care. But there's no debt incurred.

The system is set up as such as where you can "insure" yourself against the cost of potential needs in the system. If you chose too NOT PURCHASE insurance, then you should get EVERY LAST PENNY OF THOSE COST, no matter what!

I'm not following you. What cost should I get?

Look...virtually everyone here knows what my stand is on socialized medicine. I'm opposed to it because because it's an immoral system, in and of itself. And I've stated why on many other occasions, so let's not rehash the same ol', same ol'. But lets' say that I lived in Mass, and I'm faced with the choice of opting in or out. It's one or the other. And if I chose to opt out, I know I get to save a few bucks. Just on principle -- on my firm belief that socialized medicine itself is an immoral system, I would opt out. According to the dictates of my conscience, I would want as little to do with that system as possible. This is number one.

Number two. I'm also not a big believer in Western-style medicine, save perhaps for traumatic care. This means that I, personally, would probably put very little drain on the state-run system because I take care of myself in other ways -- using other forms of medicine. So, why should I and my family pay "premium" dollars into a system that we'll be consciously making every effort NOT to use?

Moreover, one must ask that if the opt-out system is so bad, why did the legislature allow for it? If it's causing such a huge burden on the "opt-ins", why hasn't it been changed? What is the state's rationale for allowing people the choice in the first place?

And right here at this point, flows my next fundamentally important point. The STATE has given its citizens the option up front. The State, therefore, is morally responsible to fix any problems that might ensue due to its laws. The state, presumably, passed the legislation with their eyes open.

Conversely, with a loan, the borrower is legally and morally responsible for paying off that loan, regardless of what the state's laws may allow at the "back end" of a bad loan because the borrower up front, presumably, understood what he was getting into. The commandment THOU SHALT NOT STEAL should have been the governing law in the borrower's mind -- again, regardless of what the state allows in terms of default or bankruptcy.

In the case of the state-run health care system, there is no theft of money because money was paid into the system -- albeit at a discounted rate. If the opt-ins suffer because of too many opt-outs, then the the opt-ins need to reconsider their choices, as does the state for allowing the opt-out option in the first place.

Do you not see the difference? With bank loans, the citizens, left holding the bag (in a manner of speaking), were given no choice when deadbeat borrowers decide to intentionally default and the banks make the credit worthy customers suffer as a result. But this isn't the case with the state-run health care system. EVERYONE knows up front what the rules of the game are and what the potential consequences are! And, therefore, it's incumbent upon all parties to weigh their choices carefully.

This is precisely why Lamby did nothing morally wrong by opting out and the system then opting back in -- and why my betting analogy is valid, as well. Everyone knows the rules of the game up front. Therefore, if the opt-ins get "burned" it's ultimately their own fault, and the State shares blame as well. The opt-ins should have known better to participate in what basically is a Ponzi Scheme -- just like SS, Medicare, etc. Neither Lamby, myself or anyone is morally responsible for the choices other people make!

Having said all this (and not to ignore the rest of your post) YES, the health care system in his country needs serious fixing. But government seizure of the health care industry is not the way to go. But that's a whole other discussion.

Boxcar

boxcar
01-07-2011, 01:16 AM
You think it is stealing and try and take your opinion to the Bible for an interpretation and backup. Slick move but transparent....your Wise Woman in Proverbs example actually says it is a good thing because it is a good business decision for the person, no? You didnt answer that one.....


Also, you do quote the Bible quite a bit and it shouldnt be a problem to find the part where it is says that it is good to condescend to another person like you did to Saratoga M when you said in post number 63"Quote me chapter on verse on what you think God wouldn't want. (Never mind, you wouldn't know where to begin or how to begin.).......I anxiously await that passage.

What part of "thou shalt not steal", don't you understand? Are you so dull of understanding that you cannot understand that credit cardholders, for example, are victims of deadbeat, irresponsible borrowers because their debt will eventually get passed on to credit-worthy customers due to no fault of their own or through any choice of their own in the matter? Therefore, the borrowers are thieves, for there are genuine victims involved, regardless of what any of man's laws may say to the contrary.

Whereas this is not the case with the "opt-ins" who might suffer financial consequences of the opt-out's choices. As I just told NTG, all parties -- all participants -- in the state-run health care system know the rules up front. Everyone gets to make a choice. And this is precisely why opting out and in is not morally wrong. Everyone gets to decide if they want to become a potential victim of the system or not.

Also, the bible employs sarcasm quite a bit in order to drive home a point, for you info. Saratoga knows not of what he speaks when he said that God wouldn't want people to drive up the costs of other people's health care. :rolleyes: So, yes, I'm still waiting him for him to prove that point because he presumes to know God's will in this matter.

The Wise Business Woman in Proverbs was praised because she was a godly woman first and foremost, but also a savvy business woman and entrepreneur, capable of making wise and profitable business decisions. So, too, was Lamby when he chose to "game" the system.

Boxcar

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 01:18 AM
RO,

You're dull. That's close to clueless. I knew you were close. Well done.

boxcar
01-07-2011, 01:29 AM
RO,

You're dull. That's close to clueless. I knew you were close. Well done.

Yup, I borrowed that term right from the bible (Mat 13:15; Act 28;27; Heb 5:11). This is why I chose it over "clueless" which is not be found. ;)

Boxcar

newtothegame
01-07-2011, 02:14 AM
But...not all purchases incur debt. You are right -- in that a loan is a product that you've contractually agreed to pay off over time.



Huh? I don't live in Mass, so I don't know how it works, but I assume that when people to chose to "opt-out", they pay "x" amount as a penalty or fee in a lump sum. Or if they opt-in, they pay "y" on a monthly or quarterly basis? Someone could, theoretically, pay into the system virtually forever and receive little or no care. But there's no debt incurred.



I'm not following you. What cost should I get?

Look...virtually everyone here knows what my stand is on socialized medicine. I'm opposed to it because because it's an immoral system, in and of itself. And I've stated why on many other occasions, so let's not rehash the same ol', same ol'. But lets' say that I lived in Mass, and I'm faced with the choice of opting in or out. It's one or the other. And if I chose to opt out, I know I get to save a few bucks. Just on principle -- on my firm belief that socialized medicine itself is an immoral system, I would opt out. According to the dictates of my conscience, I would want as little to do with that system as possible. This is number one.

Number two. I'm also not a big believer in Western-style medicine, save perhaps for traumatic care. This means that I, personally, would probably put very little drain on the state-run system because I take care of myself in other ways -- using other forms of medicine. So, why should I and my family pay "premium" dollars into a system that we'll be consciously making every effort NOT to use?

Moreover, one must ask that if the opt-out system is so bad, why did the legislature allow for it? If it's causing such a huge burden on the "opt-ins", why hasn't it been changed? What is the state's rationale for allowing people the choice in the first place?

And right here at this point, flows my next fundamentally important point. The STATE has given its citizens the option up front. The State, therefore, is morally responsible to fix any problems that might ensue due to its laws. The state, presumably, passed the legislation with their eyes open.

Conversely, with a loan, the borrower is legally and morally responsible for paying off that loan, regardless of what the state's laws may allow at the "back end" of a bad loan because the borrower up front, presumably, understood what he was getting into. The commandment THOU SHALT NOT STEAL should have been the governing law in the borrower's mind -- again, regardless of what the state allows in terms of default or bankruptcy.

In the case of the state-run health care system, there is no theft of money because money was paid into the system -- albeit at a discounted rate. If the opt-ins suffer because of too many opt-outs, then the the opt-ins need to reconsider their choices, as does the state for allowing the opt-out option in the first place.

Do you not see the difference? With bank loans, the citizens, left holding the bag (in a manner of speaking), were given no choice when deadbeat borrowers decide to intentionally default and the banks make the credit worthy customers suffer as a result. But this isn't the case with the state-run health care system. EVERYONE knows up front what the rules of the game are and what the potential consequences are! And, therefore, it's incumbent upon all parties to weigh their choices carefully.

This is precisely why Lamby did nothing morally wrong by opting out and the system then opting back in -- and why my betting analogy is valid, as well. Everyone knows the rules of the game up front. Therefore, if the opt-ins get "burned" it's ultimately their own fault, and the State shares blame as well. The opt-ins should have known better to participate in what basically is a Ponzi Scheme -- just like SS, Medicare, etc. Neither Lamby, myself or anyone is morally responsible for the choices other people make!

Having said all this (and not to ignore the rest of your post) YES, the health care system in his country needs serious fixing. But government seizure of the health care industry is not the way to go. But that's a whole other discussion.

Boxcar

Box, let me put it this way....
As I understand it...and I believe you even said as much, you have TWO options....
Opt in, or OPT out. ....Would you agree that's correct?
Lamby, and I am sure others, have found the "loophole" in the system. That loophole, which I am sure was not intended for at the inception of the law was not for people to OPT IN and OUT as they saw fit based on their needs.
That's how the system is being manipulated.
Of course, people can opt in (when the needs arise such as bad health). , then they just turn around as health improves and OPT out again. Do you NOT see how that causes a strain on the system?
You know I am against socialized healthcare as well.....
But, whatever the system, its not meant to be taken advantage of. By taking advantage of the system, others who abide by the "implied" rules, pay more for those who don't.
And as far as "knowing the rules" up front....EVERYONE knows the consequences of NOT having insurance. It's a game of chance to them. Sorry, I love to gamble as much as the next but I will not gamble with my families life. But, for those who opt in and out, to them its not a gamble...why? Because a person in this country can NOT be refused medical services.
As for as consciously makimg every effort not to use, thats a ridiculous statement BOX and you know it. Very few people CONSCIOULSY make a decision to get sick or use medical services. Medical services are on an as need basis. Its like car insurance in the fact that people buy coverages in the hopes that they NEVER have to use it...but just in case.
You arent supposed to buy and then let insurance lapse (which you can't because of state law in most cases unless you turn in your plates) as needed.
What do you think UNinsured motorist is about??

That's how it is much like one who incurs a debt, then defaults on it. those who pay their debts incur the charges of those who don't. Is it legal? Yes, Is it still wrong...YES in my opinion.
The every penny cost you should get was in referrence to a person who OPTS OU of the system, then recieves some form of medical treatment (at full price due to not having opted in). That cost (if defaulted on) should not be passed on to other consumers as it is now. This is one reason for the outrageous cost of healthcare. I feel if you OPT OUT of the system, and incur medical cost, they should acquire whatever assetts you have to pay for said bills (especially if you have played the system by opting in and out as needed).

As to whether or not we are responsible for other peoples decisions, you may not like it...but YOU ARE BEING CHARGED FOR OTHERS DECISIONS DAILY.
I've already explained the credit card interest rates and prices you pay in stores when you go shopping. You pay for theft, and others defaults daily, like it or not!

boxcar
01-07-2011, 02:19 AM
Spare me your sanctimonious crap - rather than constantly quoting the Bible to me and others, you might want to take action occassionally to actually help the less fortunate. Charity goes well beyond the home, and that doesn't make me a liberal.

You're as short on memory as your are on cogent, intelligent arguments. Look at your posts 5, 26 and 56. You were the one who initially brought the moral element into this discussion when you said that Lamby "gamed" the system -- clearly implying that he took undue and immoral advantage of people. So, pull that plank out of your own holier-than-thou eye before pointing to any supposed specks in mine. I know who my moral authority is and where to find his authoritative teachings relative to any moral/ethical discussion. What about you!?

And since you're now a self-professed expert on "charity", go practice what you preach and don't worry about what you think I need to do.

Boxcar

lamboguy
01-07-2011, 02:54 AM
i love it when lawmakers dream up laws to pick your pockets and everyone becomes such righteous people fast to criticise what lots of people have done including myself. since the inception of mandatory health care insurance in the state of mass., insurance premiums have gone up by 40%. doctors and hospital cost have gone up by as much as 300%. i pointed out the cost to adminsister tylenol at $27, before INSURANCE REFORM here it was only $12. i contacted johnson & johnson and asked if there was a big increase in the cost of tylenol, they told me roughly 5%. i highly doubt that when an insurance company gets a bill for tylenol for $27 that they pay that amount. they would have to be insane to pay these prices. the reason why the prices are so high on a retail level is because the healthcare industry can scare you into getting serviced by all these rotten doctor's that run around in white coats. personally i would rather die than have to submit myself to the humiliation of being in the hands of these quacks. i have already been scared by the medical profession when i was diagnosed with a cancer, promising me that i would not be around to much longer if i didn't succomb to their treatments. i have made it for 20 years already without their help and i am going to make it another 20 without them as well.

bigmack
01-07-2011, 03:04 AM
i have made it for 20 years already without their help and i am going to make it another 20 without them as well.
What's this below, chopped liver?

i made sure i did everything that i needed within the month including physical, blood work, colonoscopy, arthroscopic surgery and mri, and physical therapy.

boxcar
01-07-2011, 03:40 AM
Box, let me put it this way....
As I understand it...and I believe you even said as much, you have TWO options....
Opt in, or OPT out. ....Would you agree that's correct?
Lamby, and I am sure others, have found the "loophole" in the system. That loophole, which I am sure was not intended for at the inception of the law was not for people to OPT IN and OUT as they saw fit based on their needs.
That's how the system is being manipulated.
Of course, people can opt in (when the needs arise such as bad health). , then they just turn around as health improves and OPT out again. Do you NOT see how that causes a strain on the system?

But could not the legislature and all participants in the system also see this potential strain?

You know I am against socialized healthcare as well.....
But, whatever the system, its not meant to be taken advantage of. By taking advantage of the system, others who abide by the "implied" rules, pay more for those who don't.
And as far as "knowing the rules" up front....EVERYONE knows the consequences of NOT having insurance.

Correct. But what you're overlooking is that socialized medicine itself is inherently evil, and Lamby and maybe many others like him are forced to participate in something of which they don't want any part. Furthermore, I have no moral obligation to pay for complete strangers' care, any more than I do for any other of their necessities in life. (Now, I'm speaking for myself. Not Lamby because I'm not sure where he stands on this particular issue.)

Also, there are personal financial considerations that must be taken into consideration and given priority to when deciding how I'm going to participate in a scheme in which I want nothing do with in the first place.

Another huge consideration is one I mentioned earlier about my preference for alternative health care remedies and treatments. I didn't make any ridiculous statements about "conscious choices"; for my last choice would be conventional medicine. This is what I meant by making conscious choices. Some people run to the doctor when they get the sniffles. The last time I saw a doctor was about 4 years ago for a needed hernia operation. Prior to that, it was nearly 20 years back between visits!

At any rate personal health care decisions are very tough choices we must all face. I presume everyone does so with their eyes open. I presume everyone does so "fully informed". I presume the state legislature knew the risks and potential shortcomings to their legislation, etc., etc.. Therefore, since everyone knows everything up front, then can be no real "victims" in the true sense of the word. Everyone should be fully prepared for any "unintended consequences" of a pyramid scheme. And if the system should collapse because of bad legislation, then the ultimate blame -- the "far greater sin" lies with the state who designed the scheme in the first place.

As I told Saratoga, my first moral responsibility is to myself and my family -- not to nameless, faceless entities to whom the state gives my hard earned money. I must first and foremost take care of my own. Forced charity is godless, wicked, worldly "charity". It's certainly not the biblical way for "loving your neighbor". Therefore, from this perspective also, my conscience would be clear if I had to participate in the Mass heath care system, which I would most certainly do on an opt-out basis.

And yes, I pay and pay and pay for others defaults, thefts, debt s etc. But I have no choice in that matter. This is where your argument fails about me picking up the charges of others bad decisions, debts, defaults, thefts, etc. I, like, so many others, am a genuine victim. But since the state gives me the right to make a decision on how I wish to be victimized under its immoral Ponzi Scheme, I will certainly exercise that right and choose the least expensive way! You may call that selfish. You may call that mean-spirited. You may call it uncharitable. I would call it sensible and sound business sense and would have no moral qualms exercising that right for all the reasons already mentioned, but especially because all the participating victims' eyes are, presumably, wide open. Notwithstanding the hard nature of the decisions, the inescapable fact is that everyone gets to choose -- to decide. Without doubt, without hesitation, I would chose the lesser of two evils. Believe me: I would find it repulsive to have to participate in a state-run plan in the first place -- in any way, shape or form!

It's a game of chance to them. Sorry, I love to gamble as much as the next but I will not gamble with my families life.

Neither will I! This is precisely why I will provide for MY family MY way as much as the state allows!

But, for those who opt in and out, to them its not a gamble...why? Because a person in this country can NOT be refused medical services.

Sure a person can. Just not emergency treatment. Furthermore, the Mass system allows you to buy "insurance" as you need it -- after you get sick! So, again, it's not as though the opt-outs aren't paying anything. They are. Just not as much as the full-blown participants. And also...you're forgetting something; What about the opt-outs who are forced to pay penalties into the state system while also choosing to keep their own private plans? Where is the fairness in that!? Those who are responsible people get punished for being so! They have to pay for their own and for complete strangers'!

Boxcar

newtothegame
01-07-2011, 04:29 AM
But could not the legislature and all participants in the system also see this potential strain?



Correct. But what you're overlooking is that socialized medicine itself is inherently evil, and Lamby and maybe many others like him are forced to participate in something of which they don't want any part. Furthermore, I have no moral obligation to pay for complete strangers' care, any more than I do for any other of their necessities in life. (Now, I'm speaking for myself. Not Lamby because I'm not sure where he stands on this particular issue.)

Also, there are personal financial considerations that must be taken into consideration and given priority to when deciding how I'm going to participate in a scheme in which I want nothing do with in the first place.

Another huge consideration is one I mentioned earlier about my preference for alternative health care remedies and treatments. I didn't make any ridiculous statements about "conscious choices"; for my last choice would be conventional medicine. This is what I meant by making conscious choices. Some people run to the doctor when they get the sniffles. The last time I saw a doctor was about 4 years ago for a needed hernia operation. Prior to that, it was nearly 20 years back between visits!

At any rate personal health care decisions are very tough choices we must all face. I presume everyone does so with their eyes open. I presume everyone does so "fully informed". I presume the state legislature knew the risks and potential shortcomings to their legislation, etc., etc.. Therefore, since everyone knows everything up front, then can be no real "victims" in the true sense of the word. Everyone should be fully prepared for any "unintended consequences" of a pyramid scheme. And if the system should collapse because of bad legislation, then the ultimate blame -- the "far greater sin" lies with the state who designed the scheme in the first place.

As I told Saratoga, my first moral responsibility is to myself and my family -- not to nameless, faceless entities to whom the state gives my hard earned money. I must first and foremost take care of my own. Forced charity is godless, wicked, worldly "charity". It's certainly not the biblical way for "loving your neighbor". Therefore, from this perspective also, my conscience would be clear if I had to participate in the Mass heath care system, which I would most certainly do on an opt-out basis.

And yes, I pay and pay and pay for others defaults, thefts, debt s etc. But I have no choice in that matter. This is where your argument fails about me picking up the charges of others bad decisions, debts, defaults, thefts, etc. I, like, so many others, am a genuine victim. But since the state gives me the right to make a decision on how I wish to be victimized under its immoral Ponzi Scheme, I will certainly exercise that right and choose the least expensive way! You may call that selfish. You may call that mean-spirited. You may call it uncharitable. I would call it sensible and sound business sense and would have no moral qualms exercising that right for all the reasons already mentioned, but especially because all the participating victims' eyes are, presumably, wide open. Notwithstanding the hard nature of the decisions, the inescapable fact is that everyone gets to choose -- to decide. Without doubt, without hesitation, I would chose the lesser of two evils. Believe me: I would find it repulsive to have to participate in a state-run plan in the first place -- in any way, shape or form!



Neither will I! This is precisely why I will provide for MY family MY way as much as the state allows!



Sure a person can. Just not emergency treatment. Furthermore, the Mass system allows you to buy "insurance" as you need it -- after you get sick! So, again, it's not as though the opt-outs aren't paying anything. They are. Just not as much as the full-blown participants. And also...you're forgetting something; What about the opt-outs who are forced to pay penalties into the state system while also choosing to keep their own private plans? Where is the fairness in that!? Those who are responsible people get punished for being so! They have to pay for their own and for complete strangers'!

Boxcar

THANK YOU!!! That's what we have been saying all along....
Thepeople who are responsible and do the "right" things suffer for those who do the "wrong" things. Where we differ is you feel lamby is doing the "right" thing while others here feel he is doing the "wrong" thing.

You mention about the law and the people who wrote the law should of saw that......Outside of the underlying issue of healthcare, how can you say that here then turn around and tell TOM in the Murkowski thread about the law and its "intent"???
TOM (in that thread) says that the law is NOT specific...(as is the case here) yet in one thread your one one side and the other thread the other side.


"Furthermore, I have no moral obligation to pay for complete strangers' care, any more than I do for any other of their necessities in life."

You are right...you have no "moral" obligation....but you pay for it none the less. You can say it a thousand times, it doesnt change the fact that you DO PAY FOR IT.

I have NO problem whatsoever with the OPT outs......My problem lies with the "opt outs" (till they get sick) then opt in...then opt out then opt in. It places an unfair burden on those who as you put it are "victimized" by the state to pick up the tab. Sure lamb pays the penalty...but I would ask a couple questions I am not sure of....
If you opt out and pay the penalty, then opt in to recieve care, then opt back out in the same year, are you paying the penalty again? If not, that would be MY immediate first thing to rememdy the law.
Next, I would seriously look at placing a time frame on opting out and opting in...
But, again, I am with you on state run or government run plans. We can see, just in this thread the problem in Mass with government run healthcare.

lamboguy
01-07-2011, 08:32 AM
What's this below, chopped liver?it has nothing to do with cancer

boxcar
01-07-2011, 01:44 PM
THANK YOU!!! That's what we have been saying all along....
Thepeople who are responsible and do the "right" things suffer for those who do the "wrong" things. Where we differ is you feel lamby is doing the "right" thing while others here feel he is doing the "wrong" thing.

You mention about the law and the people who wrote the law should of saw that......Outside of the underlying issue of healthcare, how can you say that here then turn around and tell TOM in the Murkowski thread about the law and its "intent"???
TOM (in that thread) says that the law is NOT specific...(as is the case here) yet in one thread your one one side and the other thread the other side.


"Furthermore, I have no moral obligation to pay for complete strangers' care, any more than I do for any other of their necessities in life."

You are right...you have no "moral" obligation....but you pay for it none the less. You can say it a thousand times, it doesnt change the fact that you DO PAY FOR IT.

I have NO problem whatsoever with the OPT outs......My problem lies with the "opt outs" (till they get sick) then opt in...then opt out then opt in. It places an unfair burden on those who as you put it are "victimized" by the state to pick up the tab. Sure lamb pays the penalty...but I would ask a couple questions I am not sure of....
If you opt out and pay the penalty, then opt in to recieve care, then opt back out in the same year, are you paying the penalty again? If not, that would be MY immediate first thing to rememdy the law.
Next, I would seriously look at placing a time frame on opting out and opting in...
But, again, I am with you on state run or government run plans. We can see, just in this thread the problem in Mass with government run healthcare.

Oh...my aching head. But of course, I'm still nursing my first cup of coffee. :D

First of all those who do the "right" thing under the Mass law is precisely what we're arguing. Since everyone is forced to participate in that system, then, ostensibly, everyone does the right thing regardless of their choices -- well, at least theoretically at this point. :D

There is no inconsistency between what I told Tom in the Lisa thread and what I"m saying in this one. I see that I'm actually going to have to take the time to lay out a formal argument in order to show you and other interested readers that my position regarding Lamby's actions, specifically, are not subjective or based on my personal disdain for socialized medicine on moral grounds. Instead, my position is principled and solidly grounded in scripture. So, please be patient and I will attempt to present a cogent argument that will tie all my points neatly and logically together.

I don't want to open up the Lisa argument because there are those over there who would rather die of thirst rather than drink on the living waters of truth. Tom is dead wrong and I could very easily refute his next to last post in that thread because the reason he gave in that post was even more ridiculous than the FFs analogy he attempted to make earlier in that thread. But I've known Tom too long and I don't want to embarrass him. Besides, he's not stupid -- just pig-headed, as we all can be. Let's leave sleeping dogs lie in that thread. That thread has outlived its usefulness.

Meanwhile, I will begin to formally lay out my biblical case for why Lamby's right, granted to him under the Mass law, to opt-in or out of that state's health care system at will is not immoral, as some here believe. But just remember: You still may not agree with the biblical position. But even so...I will prove that my defense of Lamby's actions is ethically-grounded in the bible and, therefore, principled -- solidly grounded in the bible's moral values. It won't be based on the shifting sands of moral relativism or the whims of secular humanism.

Boxcar

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 02:11 PM
:D Meanwhile, I will begin to formally lay out my biblical case for why Lamby's right, granted to him under the Mass law, to opt-in or out of that state's health care system at will is not immoral, as some here believe. But just remember: You still may not agree with the biblical position. But even so...I will prove that my defense of Lamby's actions is ethically-grounded in the bible and, therefore, principled -- solidly grounded in the bible's moral values. It won't be based on the shifting sands of moral relativism or the whims of secular humanism.

Boxcar

Those arguing the citizens of Mass. should not game the system, increasing the cost of health insurance for their fellow citizens, are now secular humanists. Right. Spare us your biblical-based defense of gaming the system, because it is just that (i.e., YOUR interpretation of the bible - you don't speak for Christ, even with your god complex).

boxcar
01-07-2011, 02:22 PM
[B]Those arguing the citizens of Mass. should not game the system, increasing the cost of health insurance for their fellow citizens, are now secular humanists. Right. Spare us your biblical-based defense of gaming the system, because it is just that (i.e., YOUR interpretation of the bible - you don't speak for Christ, even with your god complex).

Why are you so upset so early in the day? Just last night you presumed to tell us what God would NOT want participants in the Mass system to do to each other! You really are quite conflicted aren't you? :rolleyes:

Boxcar

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 02:32 PM
Why are you so upset so early in the day? Just last night you presumed to tell us what God would NOT want participants in the Mass system to do to each other! You really are quite conflicted aren't you? :rolleyes:

Boxcar

You're constantly telling people what God thinks. I've invoked His name a few times in discussions. Huge difference.

And I couldn't get my last post unbolded.

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 02:38 PM
i love it when lawmakers dream up laws to pick your pockets and everyone becomes such righteous people fast to criticise what lots of people have done including myself. since the inception of mandatory health care insurance in the state of mass., insurance premiums have gone up by 40%. doctors and hospital cost have gone up by as much as 300%. i pointed out the cost to adminsister tylenol at $27, before INSURANCE REFORM here it was only $12. i contacted johnson & johnson and asked if there was a big increase in the cost of tylenol, they told me roughly 5%. i highly doubt that when an insurance company gets a bill for tylenol for $27 that they pay that amount. they would have to be insane to pay these prices. the reason why the prices are so high on a retail level is because the healthcare industry can scare you into getting serviced by all these rotten doctor's that run around in white coats. personally i would rather die than have to submit myself to the humiliation of being in the hands of these quacks. i have already been scared by the medical profession when i was diagnosed with a cancer, promising me that i would not be around to much longer if i didn't succomb to their treatments. i have made it for 20 years already without their help and i am going to make it another 20 without them as well.

Lambo, I understand your frustration. But I think you're making a mistake when it comes to the insurance issue. I don't think you're a bad guy. I'd just like you to think through whether you want to increase the healthcare costs of your fellow Mass. citizens. If everyone took your approach, all the insurance carriers would exit the mkt.

Tom
01-07-2011, 02:56 PM
Tom is dead wrong and I could very easily refute his next to last post in that thread because the reason he gave in that post was even more ridiculous than the FFs analogy he attempted to make earlier in that thread. But I've known Tom too long and I don't want to embarrass him. Besides, he's not stupid -- just pig-headed, as we all can be.

Hey!
Hey!

mumble mumble mumble

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 03:00 PM
Hey!
Hey!

mumble mumble mumble

You sure are lucky -- he really could have showed you.

newtothegame
01-07-2011, 04:48 PM
Box....you failed to answer the one question which.is the essence of this whole discussion....
Do you believe that is "right" for a person to opt in, opt out, opt in, opt out etc......(not whether its legal).....
And secondly, do you think that's what the law intended???

boxcar
01-07-2011, 06:37 PM
Box....you failed to answer the one question which.is the essence of this whole discussion....
Do you believe that is "right" for a person to opt in, opt out, opt in, opt out etc......(not whether its legal).....
And secondly, do you think that's what the law intended???

Please be a little patient. I think my concluding statements to my argument will adequately address your questions.

Boxcar

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 06:39 PM
Please be a little patient. I think my concluding statements to my argument will adequately address your questions.

Boxcar

Have you been working on your closing arguments all afternoon?

boxcar
01-07-2011, 06:39 PM
You're constantly telling people what God thinks. I've invoked His name a few times in discussions. Huge difference.

And I couldn't get my last post unbolded.

God wants us to know what he thinks. Why do you think he gave us the bible in the first place? :rolleyes:

Boxcar

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 06:40 PM
God wants us to know what he thinks. Why do you think he gave us the bible in the first place? :rolleyes:

Boxcar

Again, it's your take on the Bible. Your word is not God's word.

boxcar
01-07-2011, 06:41 PM
Have you been working on your closing arguments all afternoon?

I've been working on and off on two posts. Do I have your permission to grab a snack? :D

Boxcar

boxcar
01-07-2011, 06:44 PM
Again, it's your take on the Bible. Your word is not God's word.

I know, I know...it's the old, tired argument..."it's your interpretation...". But trust me: You'll never find a contradiction in any of my interpretations. ;)

Boxcar

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 06:47 PM
I've been working on and off on two posts. Do I have your permission to grab a snack? :D

Boxcar

Sadly, I believe you. When you write multiple paragraph posts, it becomes very tedious and people lose interest. And you do it all the time. Did you ever read Hamlet - remember the phrase "brevity is the soul of wit?"

lamboguy
01-07-2011, 06:51 PM
Lambo, I understand your frustration. But I think you're making a mistake when it comes to the insurance issue. I don't think you're a bad guy. I'd just like you to think through whether you want to increase the healthcare costs of your fellow Mass. citizens. If everyone took your approach, all the insurance carriers would exit the mkt.
i want everyone to understand that the healthcare they are paying for is basically worhtless today, another words people are throwing their money down the sewer by going to doctors and not taking care of themselves. i know that their are instances where the medical profession can help a human. but most of the illness can be prevented by proper eating and exercise. if that is the type of illness one has, such as type II diabetes or high cholesterol or high blood pressure, not doctor or pill is going to do that much.

there are things that doctors can help with such as memographies and colonoscopy, and prostrate exams as long as you catch them early. an arthroscopic surgery for a guy like myself is nothing but a waste of money, like liposuction, lapbands, and cosmetic surgery.

bigmack
01-07-2011, 07:00 PM
i want everyone to understand that the healthcare they are paying for is basically worhtless today, [another (in other)] words people are throwing their money down the sewer by going to doctors and not taking care of themselves
Bold position for someone who played the system like a fiddle to his favor and walked off.

hcap
01-07-2011, 07:09 PM
I know, I know...it's the old, tired argument..."it's your interpretation...". But trust me: You'll never find a contradiction in any of my interpretations. Sort of like an elaborate internally consistent paranoids' delusion. Usually those type of delusions are cured by the proper medical practitioners guiding the patient back into reality by demonstrating the real world.

In other words you are missing any factual reference. You can't see the scientific models that contradict your literal earth centric medieval world view. And even avoid discussing those contradictory ideas. "God less", I believe is your argument

lamboguy
01-07-2011, 07:10 PM
Bold position for someone who played the system like a fiddle to his favor and walked off.
how about the system is playing all of us

newtothegame
01-07-2011, 07:56 PM
how about the system is playing all of us
Lamby.....Since BOX is getting a snack and too busy to answer...the same question if you dont mind....
1. Do you think it is "right" for someone to opt in, opt out, opt in, opt out as they see fit ????
2. Do you think that was what was intended when the laws were written?

lamboguy
01-07-2011, 08:21 PM
Lamby.....Since BOX is getting a snack and too busy to answer...the same question if you dont mind....
1. Do you think it is "right" for someone to opt in, opt out, opt in, opt out as they see fit ????
2. Do you think that was what was intended when the laws were written?absolutely 100%. and the reason is this, their is a penalty that you have to pay for the privilage of doing it. if you don't pay the penalty you WILL go to jail the way i read the statutes.i believe that the federal statute is written the same way. when i paid my penalty last year i paid to the department of revenue for the state of mass. i am not sure if the i will have to pay penalties for both state and federal once the insurance program becomes law. for 2009 i had insurance and i had to pay a penalty for not carrying prescription care benefits. i will never take one of those rotten drugs that they want to stuff down my throat, since they want to charge me the same penalty for no-insurance or drug care i decided it was worth not carrying insurance period under the statute of the system. i want you to understand i am not circumventing any law or taking advantage of any other law obiding citizen here. if i have a heart attack, I PAY. if i get run over by a car, I PAY. there is still risk on part that i pay for. this was specifically built into the system for people that chose to do what i do.

the most important thing that one must understand is that insurance is not for the insured, its made for the medical profession to secure getting paid their high cost of care, just like home insurance makes sure the lender gets paid incase of a loss. and another thing that i can see, if this nationwide health insurance stays on the books, it is almost guaranteed to bancrupt this country due to the high cost of premiums and people taking advantage of the system going to see their health care provider for every thing under the sun. in massachusetts i am told the hospital has picked up alot of business from the people that are on mass health, the state aided insurance for those that cannot afford health insurance. the emergency rooms needed to hire more people to service this newly found business.

newtothegame
01-07-2011, 08:31 PM
absolutely 100%. and the reason is this, their is a penalty that you have to pay for the privilage of doing it. if you don't pay the penalty you WILL go to jail the way i read the statutes.i believe that the federal statute is written the same way. when i paid my penalty last year i paid to the department of revenue for the state of mass. i am not sure if the i will have to pay penalties for both state and federal once the insurance program becomes law. for 2009 i had insurance and i had to pay a penalty for not carrying prescription care benefits. i will never take one of those rotten drugs that they want to stuff down my throat, since they want to charge me the same penalty for no-insurance or drug care i decided it was worth not carrying insurance period under the statute of the system. i want you to understand i am not circumventing any law or taking advantage of any other law obiding citizen here. if i have a heart attack, I PAY. if i get run over by a car, I PAY. there is still risk on part that i pay for. this was specifically built into the system for people that chose to do what i do.

Well you nicely circumvented the question as if it was written to be a "one time thing"....
???

the most important thing that one must understand is that insurance is not for the insured, its made for the medical profession to secure getting paid their high cost of care, just like home insurance makes sure the lender gets paid incase of a loss. and another thing that i can see, if this nationwide health insurance stays on the books, it is almost guaranteed to bancrupt this country due to the high cost of premiums and people taking advantage of the system going to see their health care provider for every thing under the sun. in massachusetts i am told the hospital has picked up alot of business from the people that are on mass health, the state aided insurance for those that cannot afford health insurance. the emergency rooms needed to hire more people to service this newly found business.

The question was...do you think its "right" for a person....to opt in and out in and out in and out etc etc as they need arises for healthcare. ???
I would also ask a small follow up....is there a penalty EACH TIME? Or is it just once a year?
Which leads to the second question you didnt answer.....
Do you think the law was intended to be used they way described here???

And given your example of a heart attack or a car...please (and I hope that wasnt the case), I wish no ill will on anyone....
But, I wonder what the cost of heart attack treatment (providing one lives through the trauma) is without healthcare insurance??? I am glad to hear you would be able to pay for that....MOST AMERICANS WOULDNT!
That is the problem.....if most americans cant....then who pays?? the DR still has to get paid, the nurses...the ER etc etc.....who pays this?
TAX PAYERS in the form of passed along cost!

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 08:31 PM
the most important thing that one must understand is that insurance is not for the insured, its made for the medical profession to secure getting paid their high cost of care, just like home insurance makes sure the lender gets paid incase of a loss. and another thing that i can see, if this nationwide health insurance stays on the books, it is almost guaranteed to bancrupt this country due to the high cost of premiums and people taking advantage of the system going to see their health care provider for every thing under the sun. in massachusetts i am told the hospital has picked up alot of business from the people that are on mass health, the state aided insurance for those that cannot afford health insurance. the emergency rooms needed to hire more people to service this newly found business.

Come on Lambo, I don't think you should be casting stones on this matter.

newtothegame
01-07-2011, 08:36 PM
absolutely 100%. and the reason is this, their is a penalty that you have to pay for the privilage of doing it. if you don't pay the penalty you WILL go to jail the way i read the statutes.i believe that the federal statute is written the same way. when i paid my penalty last year i paid to the department of revenue for the state of mass. i am not sure if the i will have to pay penalties for both state and federal once the insurance program becomes law. for 2009 i had insurance and i had to pay a penalty for not carrying prescription care benefits. i will never take one of those rotten drugs that they want to stuff down my throat, since they want to charge me the same penalty for no-insurance or drug care i decided it was worth not carrying insurance period under the statute of the system. i want you to understand i am not circumventing any law or taking advantage of any other law obiding citizen here. if i have a heart attack, I PAY. if i get run over by a car, I PAY. there is still risk on part that i pay for. this was specifically built into the system for people that chose to do what i do.

the most important thing that one must understand is that insurance is not for the insured, its made for the medical profession to secure getting paid their high cost of care, just like home insurance makes sure the lender gets paid incase of a loss. and another thing that i can see, if this nationwide health insurance stays on the books, it is almost guaranteed to bancrupt this country due to the high cost of premiums and people taking advantage of the system going to see their health care provider for every thing under the sun. in massachusetts i am told the hospital has picked up alot of business from the people that are on mass health, the state aided insurance for those that cannot afford health insurance. the emergency rooms needed to hire more people to service this newly found business.

Whoa...wait a minute....I thought when congress passed this thing that premiums etc etc were going to go down??? You mean that was another lie???

And you now, in the second part I bolded, criticize others for "taking advantage" of the system??? You are amazing!!! lol
Or is it just that they take advantage of the system using too many medical services??? :lol:
Let me make sure I got this straight....they are cheating by using the system too much robbing it of money (care not necessarily needed)....
And your not robbing the system of money by opting in and out in and out avoiding the premiums??? :bang:
Sooner or later I will figure out this logic!!!!!!!!!

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 08:38 PM
I am glad to hear you would be able to pay for that....MOST AMERICANS WOULDNT!
That is the problem.....if most americans cant....then who pays?? the DR still has to get paid, the nurses...the ER etc etc.....who pays this?
TAX PAYERS in the form of passed along cost!

Not totally true - take a look at the operating margins at the publicly traded hospital companies over the past 5 yrs. You'll see 200 bps to 400 bps (2 to 4 percentage points) margin degradation due to higher bad debt from people who don't pay--the ER is the biggest source of people who don't pay their hospital bills. If you need emergency care, I understand, but everyone should realize the hospitals don't always get paid. And their margins aren't anything to write home about, contrary to what some may think.

But the publicly traded hospital have mitigated the bad debt pressures b/c they're well run. Most hospitals are still not for profits and not as savvy, so they can only take so much bad debt pressure. As a result, they need to demand higher commerical and Medicare rates (driving up costs!) just to stay in business, as Newtothegame has implied.

newtothegame
01-07-2011, 08:43 PM
Not totally true - take a look at the operating margins at the publicly traded hospital companies over the past 5 yrs. You'll see 200 bps to 400 bps (2 to 4 percentage points) margin degradation due to higher bad debt from people who don't pay--the ER is the biggest source of people who don't pay their hospital bills. If you need emergency care, I understand, but everyone should realize the hospitals don't always get paid. And their margins aren't anything to write home about, contrary to what some may think.

But the publicly traded hospital have mitigated the bad debt pressures b/c they're well run. Most hospitals are still not for profits and not as savvy, so they can only take so much bad debt pressure. As a result, they need to demand higher commerical and Medicare rates (driving up costs!) just to stay in business, as Newtothegame has implied.

Yeah I know Mike...but some of the cost are passed along as well.
As for the margins, they are passed along throughout the industry.....you and I know 2-4 basis points arent anything to write home about. But, they don't see 2-4, they see the dollars as a whole. It wouldnt matter if the hospitals only made ten percent to some of these people...they would see 10 million dollars profit and not the entire picture of cost.

newtothegame
01-07-2011, 08:44 PM
the above is just an EXAMPLE...I neither claim to know about any hospital and ten percent profits.....
Disclaimer before someone asks for a link lol

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 08:49 PM
the above is just an EXAMPLE...I neither claim to know about any hospital and ten percent profits.....
Disclaimer before someone asks for a link lol

I'll provide links and company financials if requested.

lamboguy
01-07-2011, 09:05 PM
yes that is specifically what was intended for this law. they had to put in that provision for this otherwise they couldn't get it passed by the lawmakers. if it wasn't put in, it would take away your right of choice. also the government has given you the choice but you have to pay for it, remember this, you are not taking advantage of the system, the system is taking advantage of you.

lamboguy
01-07-2011, 09:14 PM
i have to point out that this healthcare system falls under the category of privatizing the profits and scocializing the losses.

the main question that you guys have been asking me is opt in or opt out. and get insurance when you need it. that is what the provision is all about, insurance company's cannot deny you for a pre-existing condition. my accountant advised me to do the opt in and opt out option. he told me he has a state rep that was part of writing this stupid law to begin with that is doing the exact same thing, that is how my accountant learned of this option to begin with.

personally i think it is bazaar for the government to base their plan on opt in or opt out. when they passed this law here they claimed i was going to save money on my health insurance. well it went up 40% since its inception.

i love paying $27 for tylenol, and am very estatic about giving a doctor $850 to look at me for 4 minutes.

newtothegame
01-07-2011, 09:14 PM
yes that is specifically what was intended for this law. they had to put in that provision for this otherwise they couldn't get it passed by the lawmakers. if it wasn't put in, it would take away your right of choice. also the government has given you the choice but you have to pay for it, remember this, you are not taking advantage of the system, the system is taking advantage of you.

Your a funny guy lamby, I will give ya that. You and I both know the law was not intended for you to be able to OPT IN AND OUT IN AND OUT IN AND OUT as many times as you wish based on the care you need at any given time.
If that were the case, you would of answered my second question which was in essence, do you pay more then ONE penalty a year for opting in and out several times.??
I agree there is a yearly penalty....but you pay it once and done right???
Just as the intent of the law was for you to opt EITHER in or out ONCE...not as many times as you wish....
But, if I am wrong, I am sure you could provide us with a copy of the law where it says you can opt in and out as many times you like in a given year...

newtothegame
01-07-2011, 09:16 PM
i have to point out that this healthcare system falls under the category of privatizing the profits and scocializing the losses.

the main question that you guys have been asking me is opt in or opt out. and get insurance when you need it. that is what the provision is all about, insurance company's cannot deny you for a pre-existing condition. my accountant advised me to do the opt in and opt out option. he told me he has a state rep that was part of writing this stupid law to begin with that is doing the exact same thing, that is how my accountant learned of this option to begin with.

personally i think it is bazaar for the government to base their plan on opt in or opt out. when they passed this law here they claimed i was going to save money on my health insurance. well it went up 40% since its inception.

i love paying $27 for tylenol, and am very estatic about giving a doctor $850 to look at me for 4 minutes.

B.S lamby...thats the question you would like asked...the question that was asked was can you opt in and out SEVERAL times a year based on need ?
And if so, is there more then ONE penalty a year....
But you keep sidestepping artfully !

newtothegame
01-07-2011, 09:21 PM
"i love paying $27 for tylenol, and am very estatic about giving a doctor $850 to look at me for 4 minutes."

Why would you ever even worry about the cost when you say you
Have done good WITHOUT them for 20 years and will do well without them for the next twenty??

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 09:24 PM
i have to point out that this healthcare system falls under the category of privatizing the profits and scocializing the losses.


Please cite a few examples - please be specific.

jognlope
01-07-2011, 09:24 PM
NY has Healthy New York, I think a yearly cost of about $80-90 million. I will only pay $200 a month and change for full coverage starting 2/1. My brother is thinking of flying to Columbia to get his hernia repair, since he can't afford individual coverage in Va. and he'd have to wait for preexisting period to run out. In NY, there is Fidelis program for those who make a bit more than they would to qualify for Medicaid.

lamboguy
01-07-2011, 09:43 PM
B.S lamby...thats the question you would like asked...the question that was asked was can you opt in and out SEVERAL times a year based on need ?
And if so, is there more then ONE penalty a year....
But you keep sidestepping artfully !i honestly have no idea, i have no plans on seeing any doctor's in the near future. last year was the first year that i had to pay a penalty. i did not see a doctor for that year.

i did see a doctor in 2010 because my wife made me see one. i had not been to a doctor for 20 years prior to that. if i did not go to the doctor she was going to divorce me. i was unable to walk because i twisted my knee, and she wanted me to get a colonoscopy and psa test because i never had one. i went to the administration office in the hospital and asked them how much it would cost for all this. they told me if i had insurance it would not cost me anything, i told them i didn't have any, the nice lady there told me i did not qualify for mass health, but i could get the insurance and come back when it was in force and they would accept me as a patient as long as i could wait to become eligible. i got the insurance for exactly one month and then dropped it. i only hope i never need insurance again as long as i live. and if i have to die i hope it happens right away so i don't have to worry about insurance.

lamboguy
01-07-2011, 09:48 PM
Please cite a few examples - please be specific.when an insurance company makes a profit the company keeps all the money that they profit from, the government and you and i don't benefit from the profits. but when the insurance company makes a bad investment in a mortgage or financial instrument, they come running to the government, meaning you and i, to get bailed out. this is precisely what happened with AIG and other financial institutions when they accepted government bailouts.

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 10:04 PM
when an insurance company makes a profit the company keeps all the money that they profit from, the government and you and i don't benefit from the profits. but when the insurance company makes a bad investment in a mortgage or financial instrument, they come running to the government, meaning you and i, to get bailed out. this is precisely what happened with AIG and other financial institutions when they accepted government bailouts.

You're confusing property/casualty, life and other insurers with health insurers. The major managed care companies (health insurers) are United Health, Aetna, Cigna, and WellPoint. Cigna is the only one that plays in multiple insurance markets. The pure play health insurers weren't bailed out by anyone. They have short-tail risks, so in general they don't carry long dated paper.

lamboguy
01-07-2011, 10:14 PM
when an insurance company sticks to its main business, i see no possible way that they can ever lose a quarter. when an insurance company takes on a client they figure out ahead of time how much it is going to cost them to service the bet for th individual. if they cannot make a profit they don't insure them. the way the law is setup in mass is that an insurance company cannot refuse a client for any reason other than not getting paid for the insurance. because people get insurance now with pre-existing conditions they have had to go up 40% in their preimiums, otherwise they would be out of business. insurance company's do not want people like me to sign up for it, i am more than likely a drag on their bottom line. but they do have people like me figured in. but if they didn't have the pre-existing condition worked into the model they would not have this windfall in business. i have seen some of these buildings that insurance company's work out of, and trust me on this one, i highly doubt that they are missing to many meals on what they earn.

Saratoga_Mike
01-07-2011, 10:28 PM
when an insurance company sticks to its main business, i see no possible way that they can ever lose a quarter. when an insurance company takes on a client they figure out ahead of time how much it is going to cost them to service the bet for th individual. if they cannot make a profit they don't insure them. the way the law is setup in mass is that an insurance company cannot refuse a client for any reason other than not getting paid for the insurance. because people get insurance now with pre-existing conditions they have had to go up 40% in their preimiums, otherwise they would be out of business. insurance company's do not want people like me to sign up for it, i am more than likely a drag on their bottom line. but they do have people like me figured in. but if they didn't have the pre-existing condition worked into the model they would not have this windfall in business. i have seen some of these buildings that insurance company's work out of, and trust me on this one, i highly doubt that they are missing to many meals on what they earn.

Happens all the time in the health insurance business, actually lots of times in the insurance business. It's called mispricing risk. In general, health insurers go to their customers (employers and individuals) each yr giving them prices for the following yr. The prices are based on PROJECTED cost trends. There are lots of ways to screw up cost projections (hospitalization rates might be higher than expected, new biotech drugs (very expensive) might be utilized at a higher-than-expected rate, more neonat ICU babies (very, very expensive) than expected. If you think you can predict these costs perfectly, as you imply above, you should be running a health insurance company.

Why did a couple of life insurers (NOT health insurers) need govt money? They issued guaranteed annuity contracts to individual retail investors, and they never envisioned the stock market would decline 25% to 35% in one yr. When it did, they had potential capital impairment issues. I'm not justifying any bailout, just trying to explain them to you.

newtothegame
01-07-2011, 10:34 PM
i honestly have no idea, i have no plans on seeing any doctor's in the near future. last year was the first year that i had to pay a penalty. i did not see a doctor for that year.

i did see a doctor in 2010 because my wife made me see one. i had not been to a doctor for 20 years prior to that. if i did not go to the doctor she was going to divorce me. i was unable to walk because i twisted my knee, and she wanted me to get a colonoscopy and psa test because i never had one. i went to the administration office in the hospital and asked them how much it would cost for all this. they told me if i had insurance it would not cost me anything, i told them i didn't have any, the nice lady there told me i did not qualify for mass health, but i could get the insurance and come back when it was in force and they would accept me as a patient as long as i could wait to become eligible. i got the insurance for exactly one month and then dropped it. i only hope i never need insurance again as long as i live. and if i have to die i hope it happens right away so i don't have to worry about insurance.

Of course you have "No Idea".....
Because to admit otherwise would toss your own theory about being "right" in manipulating the system out the window.
Listen, I think you a great guy from what I have read on here. And I truly wish no one no ill will.
The point is that when the law was written, it was NOT intended for people to opt IN and OUT on a regular basis manipulating the system. If that were to be the case, they would of imposed a penalty for EVERY time you opted in and out. As is, I am sure its a once a year penalty for opting OUT.
And that;s fine for those who chose to opt out. There is ABSOLUTELY nothing wrong with those people who opt out of the system (that's why it's in the law to be able to opt out).
But to those people who opt out, understand that I think they do it with serious possible consequences....and those consequences are that IF you get sick and need urgent care, you will be paying ALOT more at that time then if you had chose the insurance route over a longer time.
Either way, with the cost of premiums or healthcare right now, they are gonne get your money. A sad reality for most of us....
But, my point was that to opt in and out of the system, only places a larger burden on those who truly are doing the "right" thing by chosing ONE way or the other and living with that decision.

lamboguy
01-07-2011, 10:58 PM
by the government sticking their nose into the health insurance business it has cost individuals more money than they could have ever dreamt of. they decided that everyone needs insurance except for the people that can afford to pay the penalty for opting out, the people that pay the insurance and the penalty subsidise the people that cannot afford the insurance to begin with. i have no problem paying for the person that cannot afford to pay insurance. i have a problem with the healthcare industry compensating for those that don't have it by charging more for their service.

i went to pay my property taxes last week, and they took a nice jump from the prior year. i asked whey the property taxes went up so much, the lady asked me if i have seen the cost for employee health insurance lately that she gets from the city. i told her i haven't because i can't afford the insurance.

the health industry is a joke to start out with, they prey on people's weakness. if they kept cost under control like they should have we might not have a health insurance mess like the one we have now. the health insurance bill that the congress passed has so many pages of goobly gook in it that the guys that voted for it never read and have no clue whats in it. all these guys know is that by passing this monstrosity they got big campaign contributions for the inusurance and health provider care industry so they can get another term in office to see how they can take down the public some more. and one more thing, as bad as this deal is, if the government completly socialized the deal like some wanted, it would have cost even more money. everything that this government touches seems to cost alot more than the private company's can do it for.

Grits
01-07-2011, 11:00 PM
i only hope i never need insurance again as long as i live. and if i have to die i hope it happens right away so i don't have to worry about insurance.

Lambo, GOOD LUCK on the above. Last I checked, though, none of us have any assurances.

You're floundering here, and you're pulling too many other services into this that have nothing to do with healthcare. Completely apart from it. Too, one can see, Saratoga Mike, in this case, has far more knowledge than you have regarding healthcare insurance providers. I'm not touching any of that, but I'm in agreement with he and NewToTheGame.

I will say, having read all 9 pages of this thread, like the others, I question how you justify your decision as one--not involving anyone's care but your own, though legal, but not a burden on others paying their premiums/health care costs. That bit of genius advisement from your accountant is outstanding. He's telling this to his client who (has spoken openly of his horse ownership and involvement in the past, here at PA, so therefore, I'll add it into this conversation) has the financial means to own and break horses at an Ocala farm, keep them in training, race them, and bet on them daily. Yet doesn't have the ability to afford an $800. per month insurance premium, an amount which wouldn't keep one of his horses in training for 10 days.

Carry insurance on your horses? That's kinda costly most likely, too.
Carry any medical insurance on your wife? Or can you not afford any on her either?

This deal is a simple case of choice and priorities, Lambo. You'll pay for your horses, but you won't pay for your insurance. No one cares if you don't pay for your horses, you lose--no one's gonna train those horses for free, no one else is gonna be impacted by them. But, on the other hand, take a chance--maybe others can pick up your medical tab. I truly hope your wife doesn't wind up, on the street, losing everything you all have in order to take care of you if you develop a life threatening illness or have an accident requiring emergency medical, life saving intervention while you've "opted out".

I've been a self employed business owner since 1988, my Blue Cross Blue Shield Blue Advantage premium is now up to $770 per month. At 59 years old, and 127 lbs, I'm in very good health, still I pay my premium every month. I don't expect anyone to carry me--or chance that anyone may have to, simply because I don't like doctors and hospitals, and think they're all quacks and crooks.

I'm sorry, you are a good guy, you've always been such here on the board, but I can't believe some of this stuff.

lamboguy
01-07-2011, 11:35 PM
i did not ask for this system. i have never insured any racehorses. i don't break any laws, and i am not asking anyone to pay for my health insurance. up until 3 years i was not forced to have health insurance or pay penalties for not having it. as you well know when you get older you are on a budget that you might have prepared for years ago. we are in the same age bracket. so when i am forced to make changes that i have never expected and was not prepared for i have to make due with the circumsatances. i have owned a business that did provide healthcare. i even went a further step, i had a gym with trainers and i had a nutrionist on site to teach people how to eat right and increase their odds on staying healthy. the insuarance company that i used rewarded me with lower premiums because my employee's had less claims than similar busines to mine. when i was paying health insurance premiums back then i was paying roughly $500 per quarter for the insurance. and some of those were family plans. today an individual pays about $800 for the same thing for only 1 months worth of coverage.

i am sure that you can see that if i wasn't forced to carry insurance we would not be having this conversation. if i wasn't forced into this deal there would be no such thing as opt in and opt out, and someone thinking that i am doing something wrong by doing this. what is wrong here is that not only has the government forced an individual like myself to carry insurance, but it has forced insurance company's to insure people with pre-existing conditions and those that want to opt in and opt out.

what my financial condition is should have no bearing whether i should have or not have health insurance. it also has no bearing on what i do with my horses and the training of them.

in fairness to fair, if you do some thinking you will find that i am not wrong on this matter. i know there are lots of people that have family members that are unfortunate and are sick and in need of constant healthcare. my heart certainly goes out to those people and i can see why they have a bias towards what i have said in the last 9 pages of this thing. i also understand why they think i am taking advantage of the system. but the way i look at it, the system is taking advantage of not only myself, but also the people and the family's that are truly in need of health care.

newtothegame
01-08-2011, 12:09 AM
i did not ask for this system. i have never insured any racehorses. i don't break any laws, and i am not asking anyone to pay for my health insurance. up until 3 years i was not forced to have health insurance or pay penalties for not having it. as you well know when you get older you are on a budget that you might have prepared for years ago. we are in the same age bracket. so when i am forced to make changes that i have never expected and was not prepared for i have to make due with the circumsatances. i have owned a business that did provide healthcare. i even went a further step, i had a gym with trainers and i had a nutrionist on site to teach people how to eat right and increase their odds on staying healthy. the insuarance company that i used rewarded me with lower premiums because my employee's had less claims than similar busines to mine. when i was paying health insurance premiums back then i was paying roughly $500 per quarter for the insurance. and some of those were family plans. today an individual pays about $800 for the same thing for only 1 months worth of coverage.

i am sure that you can see that if i wasn't forced to carry insurance we would not be having this conversation. if i wasn't forced into this deal there would be no such thing as opt in and opt out, and someone thinking that i am doing something wrong by doing this. what is wrong here is that not only has the government forced an individual like myself to carry insurance, but it has forced insurance company's to insure people with pre-existing conditions and those that want to opt in and opt out.

what my financial condition is should have no bearing whether i should have or not have health insurance. it also has no bearing on what i do with my horses and the training of them.

in fairness to fair, if you do some thinking you will find that i am not wrong on this matter. i know there are lots of people that have family members that are unfortunate and are sick and in need of constant healthcare. my heart certainly goes out to those people and i can see why they have a bias towards what i have said in the last 9 pages of this thing. i also understand why they think i am taking advantage of the system. but the way i look at it, the system is taking advantage of not only myself, but also the people and the family's that are truly in need of health care.

For my part in this thread, if somehow this has turned into a bash lamby thread, I apologize.
It was NOT intended to turn into that from my perspective. What it was intended to do was show (lamby and others) that by "USING" THE SYSTEM, YOU ARE HENDERING OTHERS.
Now I know you don't see it as such...and you're right lamby ...I am sure you have never asked for others to take care of your health needs. Problem is that you do NOT have to ask...the government is doing that for you in the form of the system they set up.
Now, its not your fault...you didnt create the system....but it seems you are using it to suit your needs. You can't say its not your fault and act as if you hate the system, then turn around and use it to your advantage.
You mention your finances should not be a part of the discussion.....
Well, on this forum , maybe not, but I would imagine for someone using the system to their advantage, you should be held accountable for your actions.
As I said previously, if you chose to OPT out, so be it....but if you get in a bind and need that healthcare, I feel your assetts (your finances) should be liquidated to be for said services.
Otherwise, others will be paying for you like it or not.
But again sir...I truly wish you the best in life and in health.

lamboguy
01-08-2011, 12:27 AM
i am not in disagreemet to what you have said. i don't like opt in and opt out as much as anyone else does. i don't like insurance company's being forced to insure people with pre-existing conditions either. what everyone here has a problem with is the inequities of the system where one that finagales his way through it takes advantage of those that abide by a moral concience.
the provisions that we are discussing were added to this health insurance program not only in mass but in the national program. insurance company's were never forced into insuring people with only a 3 day wait. when they were forced into it, they had to charge you for it. up until 3 years ago in mass. there was no such thing as opt in and out and pre-existing. the immorality is in the hands of the lawmakers that made up these stupid plans. they knew the only way they could get by a supreme court challenge is to create these loopholes in the bill. for those of you that like this heath insurance, please don't blame me or any one else that does the same thing as myself. you would not have this fine piece of legislation if the loopholes didn't exist.

Saratoga_Mike
01-08-2011, 12:56 AM
i am not in disagreemet to what you have said. i don't like opt in and opt out as much as anyone else does. i don't like insurance company's being forced to insure people with pre-existing conditions either. what everyone here has a problem with is the inequities of the system where one that finagales his way through it takes advantage of those that abide by a moral concience.
the provisions that we are discussing were added to this health insurance program not only in mass but in the national program. insurance company's were never forced into insuring people with only a 3 day wait. when they were forced into it, they had to charge you for it. up until 3 years ago in mass. there was no such thing as opt in and out and pre-existing. the immorality is in the hands of the lawmakers that made up these stupid plans. they knew the only way they could get by a supreme court challenge is to create these loopholes in the bill. for those of you that like this heath insurance, please don't blame me or any one else that does the same thing as myself. you would not have this fine piece of legislation if the loopholes didn't exist.

I guess we'll agree to disagree. I don't think there's much more to discuss, so I'm done posting on this matter. I do wish you good health.

boxcar
01-08-2011, 01:01 AM
I will demonstrate how a mature Christian can use God's revealed will to tackle all manner of ethical questions that will confront us frequently in our day-to-day lives. The one that is immediately before us is an interesting problem, but not a particularly difficult one -- at least not for me.

Lamby lives in Mass. and is subject to Mass law which mandates participation in its health care system on one level or the other. Lamby isn't a big fan of socialized medicine (apparently), so he has decided to exercise his right under that law to opt-in and out, as he sees fit. Some here see that as morally wrong. For example, Saratoga was the first to broach the ethical aspects to this issue when he wrote to Lamby:

So other Mass. h.c. policy holders who don't game the insurance system subsidized your care. I'm sure they thank you.

Mike is clearly implying moral wrongdoing on the part of Lamby. Later, Mike wrote to me in part:

1) Just b/c a law permits something, it doesn't justify it morally. I'm surprised you don't - apparently - agree with that.

It's tough to agree with a half-truth! What Mike conveniently forgot is that many laws are morally sound and justify obedience on that very basis! And secondly and even more importantly, obedience to many of man's law's does not require direct or even indirect contravention to God's Law. However, what is particularly important in this latter regard is that there must be no direct conflict between the State's laws and God's. I will have more to say about this matter later because this is an extremely important element in helping Christians to determine the ethicality of any given situation or man-made law.

But this whole moral/ethical issue was really brought to the fore with RO's post when he wrote:

This is purely a personal decision but in my opinion, an individual can be held accountable for whatever they do, regardless of what the system does or does not allow. The insurance situation being debated is an example of this and the housing market is as well.....people are making decisions that fit within the rules of the system but are damaging our economy and their fellow Americans in the process.

Sounds reasonable? A good analogy? Is there a legitimate moral equivalency between housing loans and the Mass health care system? Some here apparently think RO hit a home run with this analogy. But I say, he struck out! A valid analogy must be logically sound and is only as good as it weakest link in the logic chain.

Coming immediately out of the chute, we see a glaring weakness with his analogy; for the loan or banking "system" does not mandate or "allow," specifically, for borrowers to intentionally defraud banks by refusing to pay their loans. When morally corrupt borrowers intentionally "game" the banking system by defaulting on their loans, they are not playing by any banking laws or "rules" I know of. Such people are legally and morally responsible to honor their debt.

In sharp contrast to this, however, we find that the Mass health care law does allow for its system to be "gamed" by its very own rules. Dave picked up on this irrefutable fact when he wrote:

IMHO, an individual cannot be held accountable for doing what the system allows.

Is Dave right on this? Well...yes...almost. This statement is true insofar as it goes, but to be 100% valid, it would need to be qualified to read, "providing the 'system' does not require a participant to directly violate any of God's Laws in order to fulfill the requirements of the State's laws." If Dave had qualified his statement along very similar lines, he would have been dead on the mark. Again, this is an extremely important principle to understand, so more will be discussed about this later. I will prove this principle from the bible and from reality as we all know it.

So, with this as an introduction of sorts that describes the ethical problem, I think the best way to tackle this is to further dissect RO's analogy.

Bank Loans and the Health Care System

Another weakness in RO's analogy is that borrowing is a voluntary activity. No one is ever forced to get a loan. Borrowers, presumably, borrow in "good faith" and pledge that good faith by signing on the dotted line. By signing, they voluntarily agree to the terms of the loan and agree to pay it back, according to the terms of their signed contract.

The fact that lenders have various legal recourse to write off loans is irrelevant to the borrower's willingness to honor his contract. Most borrowers realize that they can game the banking or credit card industries and that these institutions will invariably recoup bad debt losses at the expense of innocent, credit-worthy customers who never have a say or choice in the matter; but this does not give legal or moral license to borrowers to take their debt responsibilities lightly. All borrowers who intentionally defraud any loan institution are primary and directly responsible for victimizing innocent people. Their immoral actions triggered all subsequent actions by the lending institutions.

But a state-run health care system is not like a loan environment. Unlike the loans situation, the state mandates participation in the system. Everyone must participate at one level or another. This fact radically shifts the responsibility element because many people may not want to participate in a state-run pool. The state is primary and directly responsible for providing a pool environment that will not be compromised. The state is responsible for maintaining the financial integrity of the pool -- for protecting all the participants therein. It's the state's ball game. They're calling the shots. They wrote the rules. And they're the ones mandating participation at some level.

Also, unlike the loan environment, everyone (presumably) should recognize the real possibility of becoming a "victim" of the state's system. This in itself, should give pause to everyone when deciding how to participate in the system. It would be naive and foolhardy for any citizen to think that the state will run things perfectly -- that the state knows exactly what's it doing -- that the state itself is corrupt-free, etc.. Therefore, they should make their choices accordingly.

The Christian and the State

God instituted human government right after the Flood. This fact should not be taken lightly. The apostle pressed this point forcibly in the central passage of all scripture that deals with Christians' moral duty toward the State (cf. Rom 13:1-7). He told the church at Rome very plainly -- to sum up his words -- be in subjection to all lawful authority because at the end of the day all authority on the earth is established by God himself. If we disobey the state, we disobey God himself. We are, therefore, to be obedient to the state -- never forgetting that it doesn't bear the sword for nothing! We could not get a stronger warning than this.

However, this is a flip side to these commands in this passage. There is an important caveat. One that involves God and State.

God and State

What follows is very important to grasp. Whenever any authority gives a command or law that requires a Christian to directly disobey God's Law in order to be obedient to men or to the state, the Christian's first duty is toward God. There is such an account in Act 5:29. In the context of that passage, Peter and the apostles were jailed and threatened by the rulers of Israel and the Senate and told to quit preaching the gospel. But this order was in direct conflict with commands of Christ and of the Holy Spirit who told them to preach the gospel, regardless of the opposition. Peter told the Senate, the Council and High Priest that "we must obey God rather than men".

Then we have an OT example of this principle, also. When the Jews were slaves in Egypt, they grew so strong in numbers that Pharaoh feared them and commanded the Hebrew midwives to slay all the male newborn sons and to spare only the lives of the females. But scripture also tells us that because the midwives "feared God", they did was right in God's eyes and, instead, disobeyed Pharaoh who was the supreme ruler in all Egypt. This is how Moses came to be born (cf. Ex 1:15-2:10).

From history, we learn that the early Christians were brutally martyred by Nero because they refused to worship him as a god. Their refusal resulted in charges of treason and so thousands were fed to wild beasts, or slain by the hands of brutal soldiers or gladiators or they were crucified or burned. They chose to remain true to the law of God which says that man shall have no other gods before Him and that man shall worship only the Lord their God.

In more recent history, and as discussed briefly on the Lisa thread, I refuted Tom's poor FFs analogy easily because the settlers who came here were also being true to God -- preferring to obey his law over the tyranny of the King and the Church of England. The settlers fled to this country to worship God in accordance with the bible's teachings. Therefore, the early settlers, too, chose to disobey their king in order to be faithful to God.

There is one common thread that runs through these biblical and historical examples: In each case, the believers would have had to directly contravene a specific law or command of God in order to obey human authorities. Therefore, I can only conclude from all these examples that direct disobedience to God's law is the only legitimate exception to what Paul teaches in Romans 13, and for that matter to what is taught in portions of scripture, as well.

This post is already long, but in the next one we should be able to tie all this together to understand why opting in or out and and in again, etc. is not morally wrong from a Christian perspective.

Boxcar

boxcar
01-08-2011, 01:10 AM
Box....you failed to answer the one question which.is the essence of this whole discussion....
Do you believe that is "right" for a person to opt in, opt out, opt in, opt out etc......(not whether its legal).....
And secondly, do you think that's what the law intended???

Isn't the first question the great one of the moment!? Let's jump in to wind this up.

In order to answer your question, I'd have to determine if the Mass health care law itself would direct its participants to directly violate any of God's laws. Assuming it doesn't, I would have to say that I'm bound to follow Paul's teaching in Romans 13, i.e. obey the laws of the authorities which God has sovereignly placed over me. I would have to submit myself to the Mass Health Care law.

But the law is apparently a complex one; for we know that the state provides its citizens with two options -- or at least two major options. And the one that appears to be so problematic is the "loophole" option whereby the state permits its residents to "opt-out" by paying a penalty that would be somewhat cheaper than the annual cost for opting in. According to some here, opting in and out at will cause an undue strain on the system. It could drive up costs for the "fully in" participants and the claim is that this would be morally wrong for me to do.

But I have a two-fold concern here also. First, if I lived in Mass, I wouldn't want any part of the system to begin with because any socialized scheme is essentially a Ponzi Scheme, which in and of itself is morally-impoverished, which is why such schemes are outlawed in the private sector. So, coming right out the chute, I'd have a huge problem -- the problem of being forced to participate (even minimally) in something that is fundamentally unsound, morally speaking.

My next problem is just as serious. What is my moral duty toward unseen, unknown and unknowable human beings? Do I have a moral duty toward faceless, nameless human beings? If so, what is it and to what extent?

With the first issue, I have no recourse because while the law is immoral due to the theft of one group's money in order to give to another (since not everyone is paying into the system to begin with), I'm neither the author of the law or its enforcer. I'm not the one directly stealing someone else's money, even if I were to use the system extensively or take "undue" advantage of the options. I have no control over what the authorities over me do with other people's money. I'm just as much a "victim" of a fundamentally corrupt system as everyone else. Therefore, I'm not in direct violation of any of God's laws by my forced participation. As far as what I know about the law, I would not be able to claim "conscientious objector" status for any valid reason -- as perhaps some religious sects could or the Muslims could, etc.

All this means is that I'd have to turn my full attention to the second issue -- the two options the state allows me to choose between in order to determine my level of participation in a crooked scheme. Do I have a moral obligation to kick in fully to the system out of consideration for unknown and unknowable people? Do I have a moral obligation to make their lives easier in a socialist system that is morally deficient, to begin with, and in one that I really don't want to participate? Are there genuine boundaries to human relationships?

Human Relationships: Who is my Neighbor, Who is my Brother?

No matter how hard you search or how long you look for biblical evidence to the contrary, you will find that that scripture speaks only to human relationships that have well-defined boundaries. The spheres of influence for Christians begin with Self, Family, the Church Family then our Neighbors.

The bible speaks much about personal responsibility, so the first sphere is Self. The second sphere greatly overlaps the first one (generally) because it involves our human family. Right behind this circle (and in some cases even ahead of a biological family) is the Church Family. Finally, we have our Neighbor. Christians are called upon to love all within these four spheres of influence.

But who is a Christian's "neighbor"? According to the teaching of Jesus in the parable of the Good Samaritan -- anyone with whom we cross paths. Anyone with whom we have a personal encounter. All people we know and have an actual relationship with on some level (cf LK 10:29-37). What should not be missed in this parable is that reason he gave it in the first place is because he was specifically asked, "And who is my neighbor?"

Very much later in his ministry, Christ again reiterates the above teaching in a very different context -- in a Kingdom teaching that was eschatological in nature in that it deals with his Second Coming. When he sits to judge to the Nations and he separates the goats from the sheep, The Lord of Glory heaps praises upon the latter (his redeemed) for all their good works. He actually substitutes his own person for the actual objects of those good works, telling his people that "when I was hungry, you gave me something to eat." "I was thirsty, and you gave me drink", etc., etc. The redeemed are awe-struck by all this praise they are receiving from their King, and essentially ask him, "when did we do these things?" He answers and tells them that "to the extent that you did one of these things to even one of these brothers of mine, you did it to Me." (Mat 25:31ff)

It's very clear from this large passage that Jesus was speaking of personal encounters. Hands-on ministries. Relationships that took time and effort to build and cultivate. No long distance stuff here. No abstract relationships with nameless, faceless human beings. For after all, concrete expressions of love require concrete objects. Love needs to be applied in very real and practical ways.

And Jesus also taught his disciples who his "brothers" are. Worldly thinkers often like to think of all human beings as being their brothers and sisters. And in a very broad sense, this is true because we all descend from Adam's loins. We're all his seed. But Jesus didn't paint "brotherhood" with nearly as broad strokes. In his mind, God's family only consisted of true believers (Mat 12:48-50)

Again, no matter how hard you will search the scriptures you will not find any command, any injunction, any exhortation to "love the world", to "love all", to "love everyone", etc., etc. No such universal, all-embracing, all-encompassing calls for love will be found in the pages of scripture. Therefore, human relationships, in the biblical sense, have definite boundaries. Definite limitations.

Having said all this, this doesn't mean that I believe that I have absolutely no duty to the unseen and unknown and even unknowable. But obviously, these classes of human beings finish very far back in the field of my personal relationships. They are truly "also rans". These kinds of human beings are very low priority for me. And rightfully so...for I have my platter full just handling my four spheres of influence for which I clearly do have a moral duty.

So, how do I apply all these teachings (and even many others which I could have touched upon) to a socialized medicine scheme? What is my duty to all those unseen, unknown and unknowable people who participate in the health care pool with me? I have, for all practical intent and purposes, no duty toward them -- for we're all forced into the same situation. If I actually had more options open to me -- more choices, I would chose to tell the state of Mass to take a hike. Don't call me. I'll call you. And have a good day. But since I don't, and since I'm duty-bound to obey those in authority over me, I would without any pangs of conscience choose to participate at the lowest, minimal level possible. And I would participate according to my ideas of value, according to budget considerations and according to my family's personal needs. In other words, my KNOWN spheres of personal influence would necessarily take top priority.

None of this means that I would "game" the system with malice -- with evil intent. Yes, I would "use" the system lawfully for my benefit and for the benefit of my family to whom I have a legitimate moral duty. If too many people use the system the way I would, then the state would eventually run into problems and they would have to modify the system. But if the system should "crash", the state would be directly responsible due to their poor program, their poor planning, etc. As stated earlier the other day, a bad tree can only produce bad fruit!

In closing, I must also add that to many people this kind of ethical issue would strictly be a matter of conscience. And the bible acknowledges the existences of "gray" ethical areas -- even among Christians because not all Christians are at the same level of spiritual maturity. Paul discusses this matter of "conscience" at considerable length (cf 1Cor 8:10ff).

NTG, hope I've answered your questions adequately. Insofar as to what the intent of the Mass law is -- God only knows. This would be of secondary importance to me. My only real concern would be whether or not the state law would force me to compromise my duty toward God's law, which I don't think it would. If the state's intent was to get everyone in the state aboard -- as "all-in" participants --, they have a strange way of showing it with the opt-out option.

Boxcar

lamboguy
01-08-2011, 01:30 AM
i am going to give up on this as well. there is no way i can change anyone's mind that benefit from the inequity's of this rotten health insurance deal.

what i can do is offer any help for anyone that has a problem with their weight here and has a tough time getting past the mental block of being able to change the way they eat. if you want some help i will be glad to help you. i will not accept one red cent. i just hope we can succeed,

newtothegame
01-08-2011, 01:57 AM
i am going to give up on this as well. there is no way i can change anyone's mind that benefit from the inequity's of this rotten health insurance deal.

what i can do is offer any help for anyone that has a problem with their weight here and has a tough time getting past the mental block of being able to change the way they eat. if you want some help i will be glad to help you. i will not accept one red cent. i just hope we can succeed,

Here Here...a classy post from a gent whom I am sure from what I have read is a classy guy!

newtothegame
01-08-2011, 02:01 AM
Isn't the first question the great one of the moment!? Let's jump in to wind this up.

In order to answer your question, I'd have to determine if the Mass health care law itself would direct its participants to directly violate any of God's laws. Assuming it doesn't, I would have to say that I'm bound to follow Paul's teaching in Romans 13, i.e. obey the laws of the authorities which God has sovereignly placed over me. I would have to submit myself to the Mass Health Care law.

But the law is apparently a complex one; for we know that the state provides its citizens with two options -- or at least two major options. And the one that appears to be so problematic is the "loophole" option whereby the state permits its residents to "opt-out" by paying a penalty that would be somewhat cheaper than the annual cost for opting in. According to some here, opting in and out at will cause an undue strain on the system. It could drive up costs for the "fully in" participants and the claim is that this would be morally wrong for me to do.

But I have a two-fold concern here also. First, if I lived in Mass, I wouldn't want any part of the system to begin with because any socialized scheme is essentially a Ponzi Scheme, which in and of itself is morally-impoverished, which is why such schemes are outlawed in the private sector. So, coming right out the chute, I'd have a huge problem -- the problem of being forced to participate (even minimally) in something that is fundamentally unsound, morally speaking.

My next problem is just as serious. What is my moral duty toward unseen, unknown and unknowable human beings? Do I have a moral duty toward faceless, nameless human beings? If so, what is it and to what extent?

With the first issue, I have no recourse because while the law is immoral due to the theft of one group's money in order to give to another (since not everyone is paying into the system to begin with), I'm neither the author of the law or its enforcer. I'm not the one directly stealing someone else's money, even if I were to use the system extensively or take "undue" advantage of the options. I have no control over what the authorities over me do with other people's money. I'm just as much a "victim" of a fundamentally corrupt system as everyone else. Therefore, I'm not in direct violation of any of God's laws by my forced participation. As far as what I know about the law, I would not be able to claim "conscientious objector" status for any valid reason -- as perhaps some religious sects could or the Muslims could, etc.

All this means is that I'd have to turn my full attention to the second issue -- the two options the state allows me to choose between in order to determine my level of participation in a crooked scheme. Do I have a moral obligation to kick in fully to the system out of consideration for unknown and unknowable people? Do I have a moral obligation to make their lives easier in a socialist system that is morally deficient, to begin with, and in one that I really don't want to participate? Are there genuine boundaries to human relationships?

Human Relationships: Who is my Neighbor, Who is my Brother?

No matter how hard you search or how long you look for biblical evidence to the contrary, you will find that that scripture speaks only to human relationships that have well-defined boundaries. The spheres of influence for Christians begin with Self, Family, the Church Family then our Neighbors.

The bible speaks much about personal responsibility, so the first sphere is Self. The second sphere greatly overlaps the first one (generally) because it involves our human family. Right behind this circle (and in some cases even ahead of a biological family) is the Church Family. Finally, we have our Neighbor. Christians are called upon to love all within these four spheres of influence.

But who is a Christian's "neighbor"? According to the teaching of Jesus in the parable of the Good Samaritan -- anyone with whom we cross paths. Anyone with whom we have a personal encounter. All people we know and have an actual relationship with on some level (cf LK 10:29-37). What should not be missed in this parable is that reason he gave it in the first place is because he was specifically asked, "And who is my neighbor?"

Very much later in his ministry, Christ again reiterates the above teaching in a very different context -- in a Kingdom teaching that was eschatological in nature in that it deals with his Second Coming. When he sits to judge to the Nations and he separates the goats from the sheep, The Lord of Glory heaps praises upon the latter (his redeemed) for all their good works. He actually substitutes his own person for the actual objects of those good works, telling his people that "when I was hungry, you gave me something to eat." "I was thirsty, and you gave me drink", etc., etc. The redeemed are awe-struck by all this praise they are receiving from their King, and essentially ask him, "when did we do these things?" He answers and tells them that "to the extent that you did one of these things to even one of these brothers of mine, you did it to Me." (Mat 25:31ff)

It's very clear from this large passage that Jesus was speaking of personal encounters. Hands-on ministries. Relationships that took time and effort to build and cultivate. No long distance stuff here. No abstract relationships with nameless, faceless human beings. For after all, concrete expressions of love require concrete objects. Love needs to be applied in very real and practical ways.

And Jesus also taught his disciples who his "brothers" are. Worldly thinkers often like to think of all human beings as being their brothers and sisters. And in a very broad sense, this is true because we all descend from Adam's loins. We're all his seed. But Jesus didn't paint "brotherhood" with nearly as broad strokes. In his mind, God's family only consisted of true believers (Mat 12:48-50)

Again, no matter how hard you will search the scriptures you will not find any command, any injunction, any exhortation to "love the world", to "love all", to "love everyone", etc., etc. No such universal, all-embracing, all-encompassing calls for love will be found in the pages of scripture. Therefore, human relationships, in the biblical sense, have definite boundaries. Definite limitations.

Having said all this, this doesn't mean that I believe that I have absolutely no duty to the unseen and unknown and even unknowable. But obviously, these classes of human beings finish very far back in the field of my personal relationships. They are truly "also rans". These kinds of human beings are very low priority for me. And rightfully so...for I have my platter full just handling my four spheres of influence for which I clearly do have a moral duty.

So, how do I apply all these teachings (and even many others which I could have touched upon) to a socialized medicine scheme? What is my duty to all those unseen, unknown and unknowable people who participate in the health care pool with me? I have, for all practical intent and purposes, no duty toward them -- for we're all forced into the same situation. If I actually had more options open to me -- more choices, I would chose to tell the state of Mass to take a hike. Don't call me. I'll call you. And have a good day. But since I don't, and since I'm duty-bound to obey those in authority over me, I would without any pangs of conscience choose to participate at the lowest, minimal level possible. And I would participate according to my ideas of value, according to budget considerations and according to my family's personal needs. In other words, my KNOWN spheres of personal influence would necessarily take top priority.

None of this means that I would "game" the system with malice -- with evil intent. Yes, I would "use" the system lawfully for my benefit and for the benefit of my family to whom I have a legitimate moral duty. If too many people use the system the way I would, then the state would eventually run into problems and they would have to modify the system. But if the system should "crash", the state would be directly responsible due to their poor program, their poor planning, etc. As stated earlier the other day, a bad tree can only produce bad fruit!

In closing, I must also add that to many people this kind of ethical issue would strictly be a matter of conscience. And the bible acknowledges the existences of "gray" ethical areas -- even among Christians because not all Christians are at the same level of spiritual maturity. Paul discusses this matter of "conscience" at considerable length (cf 1Cor 8:10ff).

NTG, hope I've answered your questions adequately. Insofar as to what the intent of the Mass law is -- God only knows. This would be of secondary importance to me. My only real concern would be whether or not the state law would force me to compromise my duty toward God's law, which I don't think it would. If the state's intent was to get everyone in the state aboard -- as "all-in" participants --, they have a strange way of showing it with the opt-out option.

Boxcar
And to think I asked TWO simple questions....:lol:

I know I shouldnt, but I cant help myself.... lol......ummm BOX...

"Insofar as to what the intent of the Mass law is -- God only knows."

How is it that "Only" "god knows" (in referrence to this law and its intent)....
Yet in the Murkowski thread...YOU knew the intent and argued Tom to no end???

(DUCKING)!!! :faint:

Tom
01-08-2011, 11:07 AM
Want to lose weight?
Vote democrat.
You'll lose your job and your house and go hungry.

boxcar
01-08-2011, 12:51 PM
And to think I asked TWO simple questions....:lol:

I know I shouldnt, but I cant help myself.... lol......ummm BOX...

"Insofar as to what the intent of the Mass law is -- God only knows."

How is it that "Only" "god knows" (in referrence to this law and its intent)....
Yet in the Murkowski thread...YOU knew the intent and argued Tom to no end???

(DUCKING)!!! :faint:

I knew in the Lisa thread because Saratoga posted the statute. It was crystal clear in that short, succinct statute what the intent was.

I have not bothered to read the "intent" of the Mass law. Frankly, since it comes under the category of BAD law (not meeting the fundamental requirements of GOOD law), my only real concerns was how would it impact my direct relation to God's law, the extent of my moral duty to my fellow man and what are the rules of the game established by the state. Everything else is a moot point after that.

Boxcar