Betsy McCaughey writing in IDB lists 10 lumps of coal Congress has put in your stocking this Christmas courtesy of the health care reform bill.
Some of these will be brought by the Ghost of Christmas Future:
3. A one-size-fits-all health plan: Your benefit package will be prescribed by the Secretary of Health and Human Services. Whether you choose basic, silver or gold, and whether you pay for it yourself or qualify for a subsidy, your benefits are the same.Also, higher premiums, a "sin tax" on your excellent health insurance plan at work, bare bones hospital care and future Medicare cuts are among the gifts our Congress is seeking to bestow on us this holiday season.
5. Government controls on your doctors' decisions: The Senate bill bars doctors from participating in the private insurance system unless they implement whatever regulations the secretary of health and human services chooses to impose to "improve health care quality" (p. 149). That broad phrase encompasses everything in medicine.
This would be the first time in history that the federal government is given power over how doctors treat privately insured patients
6. Hospitals closed to seniors: The House and Senate bills slash payments to hospitals and other institutions that care for seniors. The chief actuary for Medicare, Richard Foster, warns that cuts in the House bill are so severe that some institutions may face severe losses or end their participation in Medicare (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, 11/13/09 report). Some seniors won't know where to go.
9. A new social agenda: Money is allocated for adult preparation activities, including lessons on positive self-esteem and relationship dynamics, friendships, dating (and) romantic involvement (Senate bill, p.612). There are also giveaways to immigrants. The Senate bill hands low-income legal immigrants government subsidies as soon as they get here, instead of waiting the five years Medicaid requires (Senate bill, p. 274).
I think I would have preferred the coal.
Hat Tip: Ed Lasky