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  • Morning Bell: Don’t Let Co-ops Become a Trojan Horse

    According to today’s Washington Post, the Senate Finance Committee will soon produce a health care plan that rejects “a government-run health insurance plan in favor of a network of member-owned cooperatives.” More commonly referred to as “co-ops”, these organizations actually already have a long and proud tradition in many sectors of the U.S. economy, including health care. But Americans must be wary that our nation’s co-op tradition does not become a vehicle for government-run health care.

    To some, the word “co-operative” may have a slight Bolshevik whiff to it, but actually a private co-op is nothing more than private individuals exercising their right to voluntarily self-associate. From farm bureaus to barn-raisers, private co-ops are part of American society. In the realm of health care, a group that organizes coverage provided by private insurers could be structured as a co-op. Or the health insurer itself could be a co-operative owned by its member policyholders. Those kind of insurance companies are called mutual insurers.

    Understood in this manner, co-ops have far more to do with Edmund Burke and little platoons than with Leon Trotsky and manning the barricades. And they can be part of the health care solution.

    But, don’t be fooled; Burkean little platoons are not what the Obama Administration and its allies in Congress have in mind. In liberal Washington today, leaders such as Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), are talking up co-ops that would be:

    • Run by the government, preferably the federal government
    • Funded or subsidized by the government, or
    • Includes plans chosen by the government.

    A co-op with any of these three features is obviously unacceptable. A real co-op is:

    • Run by its members,
    • Funded by its members and other private sources, and
    • Controlled by its members.

    Why is the left fastening to co-ops now? Because their public plan idea—a way for the government to take over health care—has run into a buzz saw of opposition among the American people. Liberals have concluded, it seems, that there’s more than one way to skin a cat. So if the public plan was a Trojan horse for single-payer (which means a complete government takeover of your health care decisions), a co-op (the way liberals mean it) is a Trojan horse for a public plan.

    Congress should, of course, be empowering true local, private co-ops to be a real health choice for Americans. To do that, Congress needs to amend the tax laws to do two things: Allow mutual insurance companies to be the foundation of non-profit insurance companies; and give people the same tax breaks for getting insurance from a co-op as from their employer.

    None of this is, however, what some leading members of Congress have in mind when the subject of co-ops comes up.

    Quick Hits:

    • The House Appropriations Committee, at its own initiative, added to the 2010 Defense appropriations bill another $132 million for two elite Gulfstream jets for ferrying Members of Congress around the country.
    • According to a economic analysis by the Associated Press, Cash for Clunkers “steals economic growth from the future.”
    • Also according to the AP, Obamacare would allow a government-sponsored insurance plan to cover abortions.
    • ABC News stopped by a health care townhall and found: “the hundreds of Eastern Maryland residents who packed the school’s auditorium loudly refuted the notion that their anger over the Democrats’ health care reform plans is ‘manufactured.’”
    • According to Rasmussen Reports, 71% of U.S. voters say President Obama’s policies have increased the size of the federal deficit.
    Posted in Ongoing Priorities [slideshow_deploy]

    36 Responses to Morning Bell: Don’t Let Co-ops Become a Trojan Horse

    1. Janice says:

      Is what this administration and congress doing legal? If not, what can we do? It seems to me that all of our "Constitutional Rights" are being taken away. Now they are asking us to spy & report on one another, how absurd, this is beginning to resemble Sadaam's regime – I thought he was dead and gone, am I mistaken?

    2. Ken Jarvis - Las Veg says:

      NOBODY KNOWS what the final HCoverage Reform

      will be.

      The ONLY thing HF KNOWS IS -

      THEY ARE AGAINST IT.

      It will pass

      the Demos have the votes.

    3. Roy Reed, Las Vegas says:

      Yes, we agree! Just what can we do? This whole thing is completely out of hand. Obama will not be happy until he has complete control of us all. There is more to this than JUST healthcare. People are seeing this and are really afraid of what may be coming if something isn't done!!!!!

    4. Randall Doc Fleck, F says:

      I suspect that the "buzz saw of resistance from the American people" spoken of in this commentary article represents a less broad spectrum of Americans than the average John and Jane Doe or any run-of-the-mill mom and pop… The real resistance to state run health care is health care itself – those who are currently getting the bulk of each and every health care dollar spent.

      Let's start looking at this problem with solutions in mind that will favor the concerns of everyone and not just satisfy the greed of those who fear a decrease in money and power they've grown accustom to wielding.

    5. Nelia, AZ says:

      Private Co-ops as mutual insurers seems to be a solution for those who cannot afford insurance premiums, such as the self-employed or owners of very small business. However, this is not what the Big government advocates want. Their goal is control of every facet of our lives. They would even steal our first amendments rights to achieve that goal.

    6. Marcus in Kentucky says:

      I belong to a farm co-op. Always, at the end of the year, I get some of my money back…. This plan will do the same thing, I suppose?

    7. Fred Oak Park Mi says:

      For 30+ years my company has provided health insurance for our 30-40 employees. It is a good PPO plan with the employees paying about 10% of the premium . Smokers pay 30% of the premium . In addition , we pay for a health club membership , for all who will use it . We were up for renewal August. Rates came back with only a 4% increase. Not bad . But after hearing about the house health care bill , and after being stuck with the new cobra law , I told them I was going to not renew the insurancs , and they go can get ' Obama ' care . They all all said ' please no!! ' don't do that to us . I said , 1/2 of you voted for him , this is the the ' Change you can believe in' …..Too bad most of Congress , and the ' Community Organizer ' never owened a business , employeed people , or produced anything .. Their insights would be greatly improved ..

    8. Tim Johnson says:

      You conservatives have got to stop allowing yourselves to be brainwashed. You are buying all this nonsense fed to you by radio people that know nothing about how our world works–you are dangerous because of your belief in these people that are in control of the popular media but have no knowledge of how the world and your own country actually works.

    9. Ken Jarvis - Las Veg says:

      AMERICA – ONE FOR ALL, AND ALL FOR ONE.

    10. Richard Cancemi, Arl says:

      One woman on TV called Washington the "District of Corruption", an apt name for a place where evil people manipulate a good system of Government for personal gain or anti-American ideology. They lie; they cheat; they steal;they undermine the Constitution; they trample on our Rights; their loyalty is to themselves and their respective Parties; and, the public be damned! They think to be elected is to rule not serve. We are in the throes of despotism!

      The public is the flock of sheep to be sheared or slaughtered as they decide. Government, today is not to be trusted. We all must be watchful and wary of these evil people; they do not have the people's interests at heart in what they do, only their own.

      They are glib liars who speak with forked tongues! Americans must continue to protest and not be afraid to throw them out of office. Americans must maintain long memories when election day comes around. And if the newly elected turn out bad, they,too, must be thrown out!

    11. Dave, Laguna Niguel, says:

      A question to ANY REPEATER(used to be reporter) in the state-run media: exactly what is it about OBAMACARE do you like;a) ultimately a totally govt run system having destroyed all insurance companies. b) a separate system for politicians, for union members, for ELITES, for THE REST OF US. c) government control/intrusion into your personal checking account.d) some "person" appointed by the "government" to advise you on your healthcare needs, what Dr you will see and when. d) destruction of the current system to the point nobody will want to be a doctor anymore. e) the drug industry(as Willyboy calls them, BIG PHARMACEUTICAL!)will cease to exist, no more drug research. Any research in Venezuela? How 'bout Cuba? No? Not even CHINA! You better wake the heck up! Over 150million people in the US HAVE NO REPRESENTATION!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    12. Rhonda, Texas says:

      Please everyone write your elected officials and let them know we do not want this Healthcare plan of Obama's. Also let them know if they don't start listening to the people they will be voted out of office. WE HAVE GO TO TAKE OUR GOVERNMENT BACK.

    13. ILY-Wisconsin says:

      No Universal Health care. Period! No government run plan!

    14. jim smith says:

      What no one talks about is our present system and how to tweak and improve it. If illegals and the now "career-entitlement unemployed" (Nobama voters) want insurance, they'll have to work for it. The "how" part will be their challenge. Remember, anything Chuck Schumer says while awake, is, on closer examination, worthless.

    15. Mad-andy, Missouri says:

      the government needs to quit trying to fix things that aren't broken. I am not the most educated on this topic but it seems to me that if you get rid of HMO's, replace medicare and insurance with mandatory lifetime HSA's backed by catastrophic insurance policies only; then solve the indigent healthcare problem, (people who require emergency care but cannot pay cause they are illegal, poor, senior citizen, etc) there would not be any more big issues.

    16. Tom, Pennsylvania says:

      The liberals in Congress and the President will not be happy with any reform that does not include control of our medical lives. While most agree that health care insurance needs to be fixed, few people, other than the liberals and the entitlement class they represent, want the government to control our health care. They continue to refuse to listen to anyone who has other ideas and want to ram through their own socialist agenda. We need to continue to put pressure on our elected officials to do what we want rather than what they want. For far too long, the majority of Americans have ceeded their power to politicians who really only care about us during the election cycle. I say keep the pressure on them until they wake up and start listening.

    17. Mad-andy, Missouri says:

      I still think the solution to our out-of-control congress is to re-assert our states right's.

    18. Judith Griffith says:

      This is the most frustrating situation I have seen in my lifetime of 67 years. If I listed every issue that causes concern it would be huge, health care, private jets, deficet spending, and the absurd and offensive comment by the administration that the town hall meeting outrage is staged, just to mention a few. I think if we required the elected officials, president included, to utilize the health plan they passed we would see an abrupt change in their attitude. I also think it is disgraceful that their retirement is full salery forever. Let them clean up their own house first.

    19. David Cyra, Wisconsi says:

      I am not sure you do this type of thing but could someone give me page references regarding abortion issues!

    20. Lynn B. DeSpain says:

      No governemnt run insurance programs of any type are acceptable. period. This is a Nation of free enterprise, a Republic, and neither of those is found in socialized programs.

      Hozro

    21. Judith of The Great says:

      Tim Johnson:

      You liberals have got to stop allowing yourselves to be brainwashed. You are buying all of this nonsense fed to you by:

      ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, MSNBC, PBS, BPS, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, USA Today,(and many other papers tnat haven't gone bankrupt yet), Time Magazine, Daily Kos, Huffington Post, Chris Matthews. Keith Olbermann, The entire Acorn organization, ACLU, labor unions and their bosses, Global Warming hysteria-mongers, and hard far-left congressional members that know nohing about how our world works-you are dangerous because of your belief in these people that are in control of the popular media but have no knowledge of how the world and your own country actually works.

      Now, my comment: Do you know how the world actually works? Are you sure? Can you present data and facts to prove it?

    22. Whicket Williams Kin says:

      As I read these post it seems that most are just waking up. I see them where I was 40 years ago with my political education. If you want something else to make you mad, they admitt that MORE than 50% of the voters do not want that activist racist on the court, yet they are putting her there because we don't know what it good for us

    23. Roy Reed, Las Vegas says:

      We have got to vote all of those idiots out of office. Some of them are to old to think straight!!! We want what is fair for all and Big Government is not the answer!!! That will be the beginning of many more things thst he will control in our lives. Obamaa is a Communist, He will not be happy until he has the control over everyone!! Take a good look at his face and eyes when he talks!! He lies everytime he opens his mouth….

    24. Wallyblu, Zion, IL says:

      The liberals all said that Bush couldn't be trusted, now they say that Obama must be trusted.

      I say that no politician can be trusted, "if their lips are moving they are lying".

    25. Nelia, AZ says:

      David Cyra WI re: abortion

      web site: tinyurl.com/3200HR

      Pages 769-770 Family Planning

      code for Government funded Abortion

    26. BEE says:

      Sounds like just a bait and switch. This is not about health care for these people. It's about CONTROL plain and simple.

    27. HSR0601 says:

      Immune System & Levee System :

      All of the excellent health systems seem to have one thing in common, a well-organized, systematic preventative program.

      I think a prevention system works as a 'levee' built against flood by the government, similarly, it also needs non-profit investments from the government 'on a large scale'.

      This might offer us the clue of why all of the free states have public insurance policy in place.

      It won't be easy to draw some specific numbers on the economic effect of the 'levee' , but the flood measure lacking a stable 'levee' would be a house on sand, as the too high level of 'preventable' chronic diseases in America shows.

      At present, about 75 percent of each health dollar goes to treating chronic conditions.

      When tests reveal patients are at risk of a chronic disease, physicians have no benefit to help them make necessary changes to stay healthy. Rather, the system today is designed around treating patients once they become sick.

      If current health care system could shift a small percentage of total spending into programs that help prevent people from getting sick in the first place, it would dramatically reduce the overall cost of care.

      Thankfully, the health care reform bill currently before Congress makes several key investments in preventive care, and those pieces of the PUBLIC OPTION must be maintained.

      "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.", said Benjamin Franklin , and 'Early Detection' goes beyond monetary value as we see the recent case.

      Thank You !

    28. Dennis A. Social Cir says:

      The "guvernment" is currently into our lives in many ways, ans each one is a disaster. Social security is broke or about to be.The Congress has raided the money we pay in to do other things. Medicare and medicade is going through the roof, no end in site. The deficit is out of sight and getting bigger. This money all belongs to us the tax payer. Why have we not stoped this waste in the past?? I think it is because we have become accustomed to letting some one make decisions for us, failed to be our own boss and then exceppeted what ever the people in DC said. Well the time is now for each of us to stnd up and tell them enough is enough. GO VOTE!!!

    29. H L PUCKETT says:

      I CAN,T BELIEVE THATN THE AMERICAN PEOPLE HAVE LET THESE GANGSTERS IN THE WHITE HOUSE PULL THE WOOL OVER THEIR EYES.RUSSIA IS LAUGHING AT US, SOCIALISM DID NOT WORK FOR THEM AND IT SURE WILL NOT WORK FOR US.THAT ENTIRE OBAMA CROUD NEEDS TO BE REMOVED FROM OFFICE. I AGREE WITH ROY REED LAS VAGAS HE LIES EVERY TIME HE OPENS HIS MOUTH, AND THE LAP DOG MEDIA SUPPORTS HIM, THEY ARE ALL COMMUNIST, AND THEY WOULD LIKE TO DISARM US ALL AND TAKE CONTROL OF THE COUNTRY.WE NEED TO RISE UP AND TAKE BACK OUR COUNTRY, IF NECESSARY BY FORCE REVOLUTION MIGHT BE WHAT IT WILL TAKE BEFORE THEY TRY TO TAKE OUR GUNS AWAY.

    30. Anne Bryan Bell - K says:

      The writing is on the wall. Obama and the Dems, will never be happy until our Constitution is completely trashed. "Our" Congress and Senate are calling us Names say we are organized by "whoever", saying we are "just crazy people"… Well call me crazy, but "they" are currently premeditating the Euthanasia of the Elderly. There is 200 BILLION DOLLARS IN FRAUD BETWEEN MEDICARE AND MEDICAID. STOP FRAUD FIRST.

      YESTERDAY OUR "PRESIDENT" STATED THAT IF AN ELDERLY PERSON HAS A HIP FRACTURE THEY WILL ONLY APPROVE PAIN MEDICATION. HOW IS A PERSON SUPPOSED TO WALK??? WHAT ABOUT DEATH FROM A BLOOD CLOT OR FAT EMBOLISM????? NANCY PELOSI STATED SHE SAW SWASTIKAS IN THE GROUPS…. IN HER DREAMS MAYBE, BUT WE ALL KNOW WHAT ARM THE HIDDEN SWASTIKA IS ON. PLEASE DO NOT LET "THEIR" IGNORANCE STOP YOU FOR FIGHTING FOR THIS REPUBLIC… IT IS OURS.. AND NEVER FORGET WHO VOTES FOR THIS AND VOTE THEM OUT OF OFFICE!!!!!! THOSE OF US WHO ARE INDEPENDENTS WILL NEVER EVER STOP VOICING OUR CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS.. FREEDOM OF SPEECH, AND THE RIGHT TO ASSEMBLY.

    31. Christopher Popham S says:

      Thank you. Thank you for this report on

      co-operatives as a viable option to the current

      Congesssional health care reform bill (HR3200).

      For seven weeks we have been trying to alert the

      American people to this alternative. They need to

      be better informed that there are many other ways

      to accomplish healthy, health care reform, and

      co-ops fulfill all the requirements of standard private sector health insurance.

      We cannot allow the federal government to dictate

      our health care choices. America shall not tolerate

      this Administration and/or Congress forcing this

      costly and imbalanced legislation down our throats.

      A brief history of health care in America and a

      description of the Alexander/McGee Medical Plan

      (a co-op system) can be read in my archived article entitled "Health Care-Who Cares-I Do" at
      http://www.breakingnewsjournal.net

    32. Whicket Williams Kin says:

      Our Father Who art in heaven, Hallowed be thy Name.

      Thy kingdom come,Thy will be dome. In the United States Government, as it is in Heaven.Give us this Day our daily bread, Forgive us our tresspasses as we forgive those who tresspass against us. Deliver us from EVIL, in whatever Guise it may come. For THINE is the Kingdom, The POWER and the GLORY , NOW, and FOREVER SO BE IT.

    33. Sandy, Fresno CA says:

      I am not comfortable with coop healthcare, either. I waited for 3 years to get out of one I was in (before I was eligible for Social Security,) because I was not able to get two very important procedures done which they would not cover. One was testing for sleep apnea (which can be life-threatening) and upper eyelid surgery, since my sight was being greatly affected and reduced by the overhanging eyelids. Traditional insurance policies all cover these procedures, because medically they are considered to be legitimate needs.

      When I applied to the coop, I had to do all the footwork and phoning, myself; calling lists of labs and hospitals and doctors of different specialties to see if they were 'current' on the lists, since they were not necessarily up-to-date lists. Had to go to my doctors offices and have records mailed, and pay for the copying. Had to take my own specimen of urine to a lab (after I finally received my card,) and then deliver a copy of the results to my doctor, if I wanted it in my chart.

      They were lay people making the decisions, and the operation was so so inept and disorganized. I never got anything accomplished on first request. It always took several, and each time, no one knew that I had called before. Seemed to me it should have been in my 'chart?' It just took an inordinate amount of my time, and I was never able to make one single claim. I didn't mind paying, rather than paying the unaffordable insurance premiums when I couldn't afford to, but the frustration and time wasted drove me crazy.

      I can only hope all coops wouldn't be this bad. I want doctors making decisions for my well-being, not some egghead pencil pusher with a list of rules as the only barometer.

    34. Jeff,Alabama says:

      I don't know if co-op's are a viable solution,never used one or been to one that I'm aware of.Obviously though they've been around for a while and are of use to people.My question would be if they've been around for a while and and people use them still today why would our government have any kind of interest in co-op's as a competitive alternative?…..If you ask me the health care and pharmaceutical giants are as much to blame as anybody for our health care systems current shape,as with most everything it's all about the money!

    35. Pingback: Could co-ops be a Trojan Horse? (American Thinker, Monday, August 17th) « Nancy J. Thorner

    36. Kitchen Cabinets in says:

      I love your WordPress theme, is it a custom theme?

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