The Onion's new owner is Hillary Clinton's most lavish financial backer

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Six Responses to Bernie Skeptics:


Of Hillary, Trump, Sanders, and Cruz (and probably more) he’s the only one who isn’t an asshole.


But he’s still terrible.

His policies aren’t everyone’s bag but I don’t think he’s an asshole. He seems like a genuine honest guy.

  1. “His single-payer healthcare proposal would cost so much it would require raising taxes on the middle class.”This is a duplicitous argument.

You’re right it is. Because when the answer is it’ll save you money it ignores the fact it will cost you more. It’s like the saying “The more you spend the more you save!”. So sure a single-payer system would be more efficient and on the large scale would save people money compared to what we have now, but looking at it from the individual or family’s perspective it doesn’t. Sure it would for some, but even with scales of economy and the gains in efficiency someone (a lot of someones) is going to be left with paying more.

If it’s going to save me more, give me a $/hr figure where the break even point is. Are we talking $40/hr, 30, 20? At what point are the “rich” going to be paying more than their part of the equation? He’s the real world example of where I work. I’d say the average pay per hour for production employees is $19/hr so $1520 per biweekly check. Insurance is $135 per check, that’s 9% of the gross. Would this single-payer system raise taxes 9% on $39.5k a year income?

Wait, Univision buying a stake in The Onion was a real story? :confused:


I guess its our job to see he gets berned.

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The question I have about any proposed single payer system is not on the revenue side but the expense side.

I have not seen any such proposed system under which eliminating private sector insurance overhead (edit: and eliminating the free ride for the pharma industry bring) the total system to a breakeven or better.

All seem to rely in addition upon some sort of vaguely defined “cost curve bending” which either (1) pays healthcare providers a lot less, or (2) rations care (Medicare is rationing care already in some specialties) or (3) some of both.

It remains to see whether that will fly with the American public, which gets pretty angry and starts barraging Congress with complaints when it feels that treatments are being denied.


The expected increase in the Medicare payroll tax is in the range of 3.3% to 3.7%, raising the tax to about 5%.

According to Bernie’s proposal:

a 6.2 percent income-based health care premium paid by employers, a 2.2 percent income-based premium paid by households

And an analysis:

I have completed a comprehensive analysis of the impact that Bernie’s plans would have in the incomes of American families. The result is that more than 70% of families would save money under Bernie’s plans. The greatest savings would be for a family with an annual income of $34,000 or 140% of the Federal Poverty Level. This family would have $9,657 more in their pockets each year. The median family, with an income of $65,210, would save $8,889 per year.

I pay a bit over $300 in insurance and $111 to Medicare in my biweekly paychecks. If I never used that insurance at all, Bernie’s plan would save me a few thousand bucks a year. But I do heavily lean on that insurance – with my chronic medical condition, I am guaranteed to burn through my $4000 deductible in the first 2-3 months of the year, plus a buttload of $35 copays after that.

Aside from political will, there’s no reason to think the plan won’t work. Yearly health care costs in Scandanavian countries and the UK are roughly in the $3500 range, as I understand it.


It would take a decade for those savings to be realized. Curbing the damage being done by having huge segments of the nation utilizing only acute care when preventative care is what saves barrels of money and improves quality of life would take time. Many people would never, ever visit a doctor unless they absolutely had to, and that’s bad for business.

But yeah, the USA can easily afford to care for it’s people. The people who can afford it best ore the ones who differ on that, and the idiots they persuade to vote against their own interests.

And if the ink began to approach the red from the black? IDK, end one foreign war?


I know, that is why I feel sorry for him.

Sanders is genuinely too good of a person to handle presidential campaigning.

Like if one got the earnest altruism of Jimmy Carter crossed with the crotchety old man image of Dick Cheney.

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I think you may be missing the forest for the trees. ALL medical delivery systems ration care in multiple ways except, perhaps, situations where the truly rich open their wallets and say “do whatever is necessary.” Outside of that rare instance, we in the US are current at the mercy of unaccountable bureaucrats (ever heard that phrase before?) who work for the for profit insurers. That’s who current does the rationing for most Americans. And the rationing is scaled by the quality of the plan we have, if you’re lucky enough to have insurance, which tends to be a proxy for how wealthy you are; the crappier your plan, the poorer you are, and the more likely to are to have a critical procedure refused (i.e. to have your care rationed).

Me? I’ll take the well established and egalitarian approach of Medicare. Not to mention that they’ve been shown time and time again to be far more efficient at delivering care the per dollar of input that the private insurers. That whole profit motive thing really gets in the way.


You can talk theory until the cows come home, but the US government spends about a third more per capita on healthcare than the next leading country. That’s not per-person-receiving-care, that’s per-citizen. That’s despite not providing care to the majority.

A lot of very simple routine procedures cost about five to tens times as much when you cross the border from Canada to the US. And yet Canadian doctors make salaries that most canadians would be envious of.

Yes, an American plan may cost too much, but only if it, like other American social programs, was geared to funneling money to the rich instead of actually paying for what it is supposed to do.


Preventive care is by no means a cost panacea. The cost of screening tens of millions, and the cost of treating the many thousands who will be false positives, has not been shown to clearly be less than the cost of treating those who eventually surface as ill.

Not that it isn’t a good thing for those who are detected in the early, treatable stage of an illness, but good things often cost money.

Actually, I quite agree. Short of acquiring some magic dwarves who can spin straw into gold, there is simply no way of meeting Americans’ aggregate demand for the healthcare they want, delivered when they want it.

I have no problem with rationing care in any health system provided that (1) we are quite explicit about rationing and don’t conceal it with pseudo-clinical bullshit, and (2) those who wish to spend their own money to purchase services denied them by the system, or to receive them sooner, are not restrained from doing so.

Ask your doctor, or ask someone who works in your hospital, how much is spent on trying to comply with Medicare’s kilopages of billing rules, which are simultaneously extraordinarily complex and remarkably vague, and which, when not followed even in error, can lead to colossal fines and jail time.

The result is that many providers bill for less than they are properly entitled to, just to stay on the good side of the compliance sheriffs. Medicare has done an excellent job of offshoring its costs to the provider community.

So if there was a food shortage you would have no problem with food rationing provided that rich people could still buy food? If there was a gas shortage you would have no problem with gas rationing provided that rich people could still buy gas? Allowing people to purchase services is not rationing.

Every developed nation other than the US has asked itself whether a person’s access to healthcare ought to be determined by their income, and every one has said no. As a result every ones spends less on healthcare and gets better or equivalent results in terms of health outcomes. Americans are spending more money to get the same or worse aggregate outcomes and the only benefit (it’s not a benefit) in ensuring that wealthier people are treated better than poorer people.

These burdens would be substantially lessened if everyone was entitled to care instead of just some people. The more restrictions there are on accessing something, the more paperwork has to be done to get access to it.


For example, if there is a drug which will provide six months’ life extension to people with a given disease, and the drug costs $180,000 dollars for that six month treatment, the health system should either (1) provide that drug to everyone with disease X or (2) allow those who can afford the $180,000 to buy it on their own. Either is okay with me.

In this: [quote=“lolipop_jones, post:17, topic:72904”]

  1. we are quite explicit about rationing and don’t conceal it with pseudo-clinical bullshit, and (2) those who wish to spend their own money to purchase services denied them by the system, or to receive them sooner, are not restrained from doing so.

I was objecting only to the part I have bolded. I agree that non-insured treatments being available privately is fine.

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That is how it works everywhere else. No one is gonna give you the four o’clock knock for paying for healthcare if’n you don’t want to use the free one. Health insurance is still a thing here in the UK as well as the NHS.