Recently my allergy doctor suggested a vapor treatment for my pollen-driven tightened chest. I said okay. It never occurred to me to ask how much does the treatment cost because I won't get a bill. The charge will merely be an object of curiosity when the insurance company sends me an explanation of benefits they paid. If the insurer is required to pay – no questions asked – for tests and treatments, our profit-making health care eco-system is going to prescribe more at a higher cost each. That leads directly to rising insurance premiums. If I had to pay the bill for that treatment, I would have asked more questions about the cost and efficacy.
By the time I had printed out a copy of the just released Congressional Budget Office (CBO) cost estimate of the GOP proposal to "repeal and replace Obamacare" my inbox had filled up with draconian headlines. A complete reading of the 27 page report paints a more complicated picture but does urge caution as the House of Representatives moves to debate. But, if we examine the CBO's underlying assumptions, their analysis, itself, is complicated and more conjecture than fact.
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projects National Debt will rise to at least 110 percent of GDP by 2036. Before the United States reaches the 100 percent Debt to GDP threshold, no investor, foreign or domestic, will be willing or able to purchase our debt at any interest rate. The combination of political and social instability will swallow everything – including your savings. And yet, unlike Barack Obama, neither Hillary Clinton nor Donald Trump have focused on the rising ratio of Debt to GDP or the risk it presents. No more credit card shopping for Congress and the American people. We can't pay the bill!
After I turn off the lights each night, I repeat the basic prayer of my faith followed by a brief, extemporaneous chat with God. It was just after 1 AM Sunday morning when I asked God to do what he can to achieve peace on earth. At that very moment the largest mass shooting in
During my early December trip to Washington DC and New York the streets were crowded and restaurants were packed with Holiday Celebrants. San Bernardino dominated the news but none of the travelers or "locals" I met seemed overly concerned. None where concerned enough to change their plans. My random sampling of opinions found no widespread fear -- just a desire for smarter government security rather than just more government security.
If I had left 5 minutes earlier last Saturday, I still would not know -- and it wouldn't have occurred to me -- the Post Office was holding my mail or considered my mail box somehow illegitimate.
The Veterans Administration Health Care System is terminally ill. It is afflicted, House VA Committee Chair, Jeff Miller, says with a "culture of corruption, lying and cheating". Chairman Miller believes the culture problem is so severe "no amount of legislation can fix it". The culture is a cancer on the organization –metastasized or worse. It requires immediate and radical organizational disruption – analogous to surgery and corporate chemo plus radiation! It is time to clean house at VA Health Care
VA Health System began as the fulfillment of a moral guarantee made to American veterans since Revolutionary War to care for them when they could not care for themselves. Fast forward a century. There is a strong social safety net - Medicare, Medicaid, Obamacare, Social Security Disability, Social Security Retirement, Food Stamps and Unemployment Insurance - available to all Americans. The vast majority of our veterans are citizen soldiers. Why not consider integrating rather than duplicating these programs?
The specific issues at Veterans Administration boil down to one simple fact: The VA duplicates services other government departments provide more efficiently to the general population!
The American middle class is shrinking faster than the polar ice caps. The question is are we going to concede defeat or are we going to ignite a 21st century American economy that provides stability and prosperity for everyone willing to work for it.