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  • Morning Bell: It's All Downhill From Here

    This Morning Bell is the third in a five-part week-long series on how Obamacare will affect you.

    The scariest part about yesterday’s Senate Finance Committee vote passing its version of Obamacare, is not what is in their bill (to the extent that it even exists), but that the Finance Committee bill promises to be the high water mark for “bipartisanship” in health care reform.

    Now all of the other bills will be merged together behind the closed doors. All the bills are fundamentally flawed and will only get worse as the leaders in the House and Senate have to commit to actual details.

    COST — All the proposals carry a hefty price tag. The Finance bill estimates start at $829 billion. Preliminary estimates of the House Tri-Committee bill put the price tag over $1 Trillion and adding another $245 billion to the deficit. Preliminary estimates of the HELP Committee bill would add $598 billion to the deficit over the next 10 years. And the outlook for the following ten years looks far far worse.

    EMPLOYER MANDATE – More spending means more taxes. All the proposals include new taxes on employers. Taxes on employers will ultimately result in lower wages, fewer jobs, and slower economic growth. According to The Heritage Foundation, the mandates, like those in the House bill, could cost businesses up to $49 billion a year, 10.2 million workers will be at risk of slower wage growth and cuts in other benefits, and as many as 9 million low-wage and part-time workers will lose their employer-based health insurance.

    PUBLIC PLAN – All the proposals include the creation of a new government health plan. The Finance proposal calls it a co-op while the House Tri-Committee bill and the Senate HELP Committee all call it a new public plan. Despite what activists on the left claim, a government run health insurance “option” will not be on a level playing field with other private options. The playing field will be skewed to push millions of Americans out of their current private health insurance and into the government run plan.

    INDIVIDUAL MANDATE – All the proposals force every Americans to buy health insurance or pay a penalty, some even threatening jail time if they do not comply. Such a mandate is a massive tax increase on individuals and families whose health insurance does not meet the new federally determined standards. This means that Congress will, for the first time in U.S. history, force Americans to buy federally designed packages of health benefits, even if they do not want or need those benefits.

    MEDICAID EXPANSION – Hidden in all the proposals is a massive expansion of the Medicaid program. The result is millions more Americans would be dependent on this growing entitlement program. This means more costs to taxpayers, less flexibility for the states, and worsening markets for the privately insured.

    MEDICARE CUTS – All the proposals depend heavily on billions in Medicare cuts to pay for their versions of Obamacare. Traditionally, such cuts rarely come to fruition. Special interests lobby to stop any real cuts from occurring after the bill is passed. And some so-called fraud, waste and abuse cuts, like those to the Medicare Advantage, will put millions of seniors’ benefits at risk.

    Do high costs, government expansion, huge tax increases, major unfunded expansions in Medicaid and major cuts to Medicare sound like a recipe for success?  It’s all downhill from here.

    Quick Hits:

    Posted in Ongoing Priorities [slideshow_deploy]

    41 Responses to Morning Bell: It's All Downhill From Here

    1. eliza, phoenix says:

      I'm tired being bullied by the democratic party, and I feel very bullied regarding this healthcare plan if it passess. I am waiting for the moralistic, cool headed school hero that teaches the bully a lesson. I'm afraid there is no one in congress brave enough nor gutzy enough to stand up and speak up for the american people. Our hands are tied by the economy. We are losing our dignity because we feel useless because we can't earn enough to take care of our families, we feel week and beaten, but never underestimate the american people – we would back up the school hero against the Bully because we are many. We still own Our American Spirit. Thank you.

    2. Dwayne says:

      It's all downhill like falling from Mt. Everest.

    3. Freedom of Speech, T says:

      If employers go out of business – jobs are lost.

      If employers are no longer willing to take risks and deal with the day-to-day headache regulations and problems – they will close shop – jobs will be lost.

      If employers (who have already made their fortune) decide enough is enough – they will close shop – jobs will be lost.

      When businesses are pushed where they will not make a profit that is worth it all – they will fold and – jobs will be lost.

      Someday soon, MOST people will work for the government – if you "play ball" and can land a job with them. THEN YOU WILL do what you are told.

      People better wake up and realize what their life is going to look like when most businesses cease to exist and are government controlled.

    4. Pingback: The Morning After – Blog Watch

    5. Mary N. Lodi, WI says:

      This adminstration has the American people right where they want them…..dependent and forever beholding to the almighty government. Hope all that voted for Obama are happy. There better not be one complaint from any of them…..what is happening here is NOT a Bush leftover mess. This is an Obama and CO. takeover of the American people. This is deeply upsetting to me and very sad indeed. Hopefully someone strong and determined will run in 2012 so we can vote this garbage out…if we will still have the right to vote.

    6. rtwagaman, keswick, says:

      What has happened to the Heritage Foundation that I have known and loved all these years? You have totally lost your objectivity and started screaming just like Rush and Glenn. Instead of talking about Tort Reform and other ways of reducing healthcare costs, you are banging the drum rapidly in support of the wild issues being thrown out by the insurance industry. They are not required to insure everyone regardless of their conditions that is what the government option is all about. We do not have the best health care in the world–by any measure our population lags many countries. What has happened to your "can do" attitude? Being negative all the time is not the Heritage Foundation that I have known and respected!

    7. Ella QUINN N.C. says:

      I really hate all this is happening in our country.WE have to do more but what?we need some big voices to help us.If you are out their help us.I will not take all this garabage lightly.I will not be slaved by the evil democrats,and all their bull you know what.They are a bunch of cowards hiding behind closed doors at the white house and with their money and our money.

    8. Loves Dogs says:

      THIS IS A SAD DAY for UNITED STATES OF AMERICA because of all the liberal idiots that don't give a d— about the people that built this country and saved this country. All the liberals and democrate's want out of this is to stay in office and continue to destroy any resemblance of an AMERICA that once was. I find it so hard at 64 to understand where the gutless politicians are that can't stand up for the people that have sent them to be there for the people they represent. Every politician there in D.C. needs to be gone. The GOOD OL' BOY SYSTEM NEEDS TO BE GONE….

      I pray that this all wakes people up. There is NO OVER THE RAINBOW. This isn't a movie that turns out okay in the end. These people don't care about anyone except them and their pocket books and what gets them their votes. I hope HOLLYWOOD goes right down the tube where they all belong and the special interest groups that think we can't live without them. Think again! NO ONE IS GOING TO GET FREE HEALTH CARE. THAT'S HOW STUPID YOU ALL ARE…..YOU BOUGHT INTO THIS GROUP OF PEOPLE THAT DON'T GIVE A D—ABOUT YOU OR ME OR ANYONE EXCEPT THEMSELVES. THEY WON'T HAVE THE CRAPPY INSURANCE THAT ALL OF US WILL ENDURE.


    9. m. morton says:

      So much for transparency or that we don't want the gov't healthcare(Obamacare).

      How is this all going to end???? Too scarey.

    10. R.U.WITHMEE says:

      First was tax rebate,then tax rebate two,then cash for clunkers,now another cash windfall for Christmas.The biggest and best to come is obamascare!Poor old Queen Antoinette was a piker compared to Obama."Mr Obama is gonna save us all".


    11. Arnie Rosner, Founta says:

      Please remove all references, in your reports and position papers, to the term "leadership"; all we have seen so far is anything but leadership!


    12. Lee-White Tanks AZ says:

      What I want to know and can not get an answer to is: How do the unions fair in all of this?

      Many of the unions are responsible for health care for active members, others are responsible for retired members, and some are responsible for both.

      Can they "walk" from this and send their membership or retirees to the DMV (or whatever) where the members and retirees become responsible for their own "insurance".

      It seems to me that this is the source of the "real" Obama related push for a Public Option. One that would take the unions off the hook for Billions upon Billions of Health Care Dollars.

      I have seen not one word about this and yet in my gut i know there has to be a big "plus" somewhere in all of this for Unions. Otherwise Obamacare would not be getting the push it is. Even the idea of "bigger, more intrusive" government becomes a possible "straw man" hiding the real Union related bonanza.

      This may also explain the push for a "bill" any kind of "bill" that can "mask" a huge taxpayer give away to the Unions.

      PC is Thought Control


    13. Greg Hagen says:

      One thing that's largely missing from the debate, is the Republican legislators' pointing out the 'features' that are in the different proposed bills. Many are unconstitutional, and that could be brought up too…but to articulate into the debate the end-result day-to-day authoritarianism over people's lives would possibly make the bluedogs and some other dems in unsure seats think twice and possibly help sway a few key votes. We only need a few to be swayed. One ussue has had an effect because of a slip during President Obama's recent address. Betsy McCaughey says "there's a horrer story on every page", please could our representatives tell the story. A few are, but other than them, the talkshow hosts shouldn't have to do it all.

    14. Albuquerque, New Mex says:

      The more I study Franklyn D. Roosevelt, The New Deal and the Great Depression; the more I see similarities to the current Administration of Pres Obama. FDR seemed to hate the idea of American business success and wealth generation and was hell bent on punishing the rich and redistributing wealth. I see the current administration with the same goals and core beliefs.

    15. Richard Cancemi, Arl says:

      All we ever get from Washington Elitists are lies, lies and more lies, in one form of 'new speak' or another! The language they use is geared to confuse and not to clarify.

      Politicians are usually up to no good and offer us no good. Their 'service' is to themselves and their own welfare; and the public be damned…… until election time comes around. Then try to kiss our "you know whats'. Election time is when we need to damn all of them with replacements of new people whose past track records prove they are Americans first and foremost.

      Traitors, the likes of which we have in the White House and its collection of anti-American socialists, as well as those in the halls of Congress, need to be routed.

      Voters need to wake up and vote with their brains not their emotions. They need to listen, ponder and then decide if a candidate is worthy of trust. If he proves to have been duplicitous, then kick him out and try again. Let us not fall for their blather, their bombast, their manipulations of facts, their looks. Let us vote intelligently.

      Let us vote on whether they have proven themselves to be adherents of the American way our Founding Fathers have directed and which has made America great for all.

      Socialism is a seductive trap that when complete enslaves everyone!

      Are their any courageous patriots in Congress who will stand on principles and challenge the legitimacy of the garbage the Politicians(Democrats and Republicans) have been shoveling on the American people for decades?

      We have seen our Country dissolving before our eyes through "compromise".

      What's right is right and wrong is wrong, and never the twain should meet!

    16. Becky says:

      It is all very tiring. I think a lot of people just feel like letting them go ahead and ruin everything as fast as they can, so we can start over. Maybe the Russian who predicted the US would dissolve wasn't so nuts after all.

    17. Ron Derry NH says:

      I had thought that Obama promised not to add to the deficit or raise taxes on the middle class and especially no one under a said amount.

      Now I didn't vote for him knowing he was a soothsayer and a fraud, but many people were counting on him being different than your usually snake oil salesman that we usually get.

      The change he is bringing is he has changed his word.

      He can't be trusted or believed in as all he is doing is raising taxes, adding to the deficit and bamboozling people into believing he knows what he is doing.

      He and his administration have taken a banking problem, spread it to a stock market problem, to a world credit problem to a monetary collapse and worse have paid such a high price tag for the alleged recovery that there is NO HOPE of recover as long as the DEMOCRATS are in charge.

      Sure GW left office with a situation brewing with the economic upheaval that Socialism has burden our country with, but no one in their right mind could foresee this disastrous presidency. The DEMOCRATS and OBAMA are regressing into lies, threats and the destruction of our free system by so many methods with dyer results. All too willing, the accomplices to this unraveling of our economy, proudly declare we are in the clear, as the stock market reacts to stimulus money freshly minted that has defrauded our perspective of the 1.4 trillion debt looming on the horizon creating fear and worry.

      We are going out of business and the owners are buying more furnishings for their offices and buying themselves new cars as the customers are abandoning the premises. This looks exactly like the rich kid who depletes his Daddies business buying Corvettes for himself and partying while the business fails and his friends steal the register blind.

      So typical of the elite not to see or care about the customers or employees, that got them to where they are………the privileged class always reacts the same in a crisis, talk, blow smoke and rob the till while the business that created the wealth fails.

      This is by far the worst presidency, most immature bunch of fascist we have ever witnessed gutting our country of all its economic engines, freedoms and liberty by blatant arrogant wasteful spending and unholy destruction of the citizenship personal worth.

      We need a man like Lee Iaccoca, to take this political hack job that is occurring right before us, out to the trash and start restoring JOBS.

      Here that JOE BIDEN, that three letter word….JOBS!!!

      Human needs, invite productivity, to create JOBs, to make the products,that creating the worth, that sustains the wealth that allows the government to spend some of it…IT DOESN'T GO IN REVERSE!

    18. Clif Albino, New Ber says:

      Please tell me why anyone would vote for an incumbent

    19. Rebel Yell, Michigan says:

      I found & read some of the Baucus markup; in it, it violates States sovereignty rights. Here is the link; http://finance.senate.gov/sitepages/leg/LEG%20200

      look on page 11-12, under "Enforcement Mechanism" "If a state fails to adopt the changes in conformance with the new Federal minimum standards either by adopting the NAIC Model or through Secretarial approval, conflicting state laws would be preempted." Read more of the markup, it goes on . . .

    20. Christopher Popham S says:

      We are the falling Roman Empire of the 21st Century.

      The people are indeed too downtrodden by corrupt

      'politicians', elites and the left wing media.

      If we are not in denial then we have just given up

      and will allow this Administration and Congress to

      drag this once great nation to 3rd world oblivion.

      They will be rich. They will control, dictate and

      mandate and we shall awake some morning to find

      ourselves subjugated, beaten and at the whim of

      those in power.

      Of course we could revolt, but that wouldn't be

      politically correct, now would it?

    21. Bev, Pittsburgh PA says:

      So what do we do NOW???? I've called my Pennsylvania "representative" and emailed, all I get back is an email explaining they know better than I do and that they're going to vote for this mess (Specter, Casey, Altmire). My stomach is in knots.

    22. mackp says:

      I have something to say to everyone, today I contacted the GOP Mr Steele and simply told him that the Republicans need to walk out of the house & senate, stand on the steeps of the Capital and call it like it is. That this Government/Democrates are pushing for a Socailist country. And WE THE PEOPLE need to let Republicans know we will stand with them.I'm not just talking about the Republicans standing up. All the Americans that went to the tea parties, all the people that beleive in their hearts this Democrate party, the Nancy,Harrys,Dodds, Franks and Snowe, Murtha Obama. WE THE PEOPLE will come to Washington in the millions and march to take back our Country. WE THE PEOPLE are feed up with all of the Gutless Representative's that are not standing up for America and the Constitution. You want my money to support the GOP than earn it. Stand-up and Americans will stand with you. As a Marine Veteran I do not know how much longer I can keep the faith. Semper Fi

    23. dave, Toms River NJ says:

      First it is you WILL buy Government mandated Health Insurance or pay Penalties,

      Then, you will buy a Government Mandated Car or pay penalties

      Have a Government Bank Account

      Own a Government Mandated House attend a Government Mandated School, Marry a Mandated Spouse have a mandated 2.3 Kids, Eat Government supplied Foods at Government run Restaurants or Eateries….

      Speek out against the Government and be call a racist and be socially outcast or maybe even hung in town square?

    24. Corky says:

      SOMETHING IS VERY WRONG HERE! The democrats are PUSHING obamacare through and it is not wanted by the MAJORITY of people in this Country. WHY are they doing this? Does this not ring a bell of alarm to you all? Why are they spending money we don't have? They are taking money from medicare and putting money into medicaid. They are using YOUR TAX MONEY to pay for ILLEGALS care.(that should give a little more incentive for MORE ILLEGALS to cross the border!) Tax money to pay for abortions. They voted themselves a raise and we the people have to PAY! I am not saying we don't need some changes made in our healthcare system but not like this. They have already ruined the Social Security System. Now they wish to take money from seniors who have worked their intire lives putting TAX money into the system. They are weaking our defenses. They are more worried about this healthcare reform than they are about the possibility of nukes in Iran. WAKE UP AMERICA BEFORE IT'S TO LATE!

    25. Janet, West Chester, says:

      Why do we not demand that either we the people enjoy the same healthcare plan as the U.S.Congress et al or the U.S.Congress includes themselves in whatever plan they write, approve and pass on to the President for us? Seems simple enough.

    26. jim smith says:

      This Congress is engaged in criminal behavior. This time, next year, many will be getting ready for the boot they so richly deserve. Their replacements will require cujones, useful brains and baritone voices. The Republicans need a leader

      NOW! Nobama becomes more dangerous with each passing day. It's only nine months and his "transformation" is all islamo-fascism. Bet on it !!

    27. Virginia Vanden Bosc says:

      What is quite disconcerting to me is that the Republicans in the House cannot even get enough signatures together to ensure that this health-care fiasco will be read before it's pushed on the American people. What ever became of the president's call for transparency in government!

    28. rtwagaman, keswick, says:

      Why is my comment, made yesterday, still under moderation?

    29. Dennis A. Social Cir says:

      The dems and obama believe that it is their way or the highway. They are going to push this thing through unless the voter stands flat footed and screams to all of congress that they will not take this BS. Our only hope to save this country is to get to the polls in 2010 and change the make up of Congress, and then remember the mess that obama has created in the next election. All this has nothing to do with race, it is the Socialist agenda that they want, we must put a stop to it or learn to speak Chinese in the near future when all the bills come due.

    30. John Hyland says:

      A quick question. Where in the law or how does it work….the supposedly 14% paid by Medicare to the Insurance companies as a subsidy for Medicare Advantage plans. I've been trying to find out for months. No one knows.

      I always thought that the Insurance companies get the medicare premium paid by seniors each month to the government. (About $100 a month). What else do they get and why and how?

      Thanks and God Bless….Whoops! Can't say that anymore! Sorry!

    31. Freedom of Speech TX says:

      Dear Lee-White Tanks AZ,

      God, I love the name of your town!

      Bingo! You win the prize.

      You are right about the Unions. Somehow, some way, they will try to protect them We will learn more about this. I would bet this is being watched closely on capital hill.

      I have nothing against the union health care programs, but if the rest of us who do not work for a union – or are self-employed, are going to get bit – than fair is fair.

    32. Dave Utah says:

      I am wandering, why is everyone still in the discussion stage at this point! I have always looked at the American people as people who get the job done not talk about it all day. Why are we not forming up the troops and marching on the Washington Nationalists/Anarchist/Nazi/Communists to remove them from power and instill our government of the people for the people and by the people while we are still a republic!! Is anyone who reads these articles and many others provided on the internet in this mode yet? I don't see any other way of turning this trend around. If we the people don't step in the middle of it and stop the illegal and unconstitutional processes going on who else is going to do it. Yes I know we have lobbiest to help but the Obama regime is getting too strong for them to talk any sense into the current incumbents. I realize we have a vote coming to replace our dead beat representatives but it is not going to happen as fast as Obama is getting his way with his Congress. The Iran deversion slowed down our attention for a short time but Obama is passing legislation as fast as he can let's stop him now!

    33. Mark Stanich from Il says:

      The Foundation should have someone looking into Craig Becker, who Obama is trying to sit on the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). If this guy is in anyway connected to former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, SEIU Local 880 in Chicago and to Acorn, least the Senate should hold a hearing on the nomination of him to the NLRB.

    34. Charles A Hill Char says:

      It seems that the only hope and change is to start spending more of our Social Security ( no increase this year) which they have been "BORROWING" out of for years for (OTHER) programs? By the way, Did they ever repay this? If not, Can we charge interest?

      Seems that they need the old folks money to spend on helping the unions wants and needs and endless spending.

      Hopefully we will overcome this socialist administration and their yes men in congress in the next election.

    35. Leon, Durango, CO says:

      Get me a tin foil hat, but I don't believe everything that the Doctors say anymore. See, if you look at all those television ads for drugs you know right away that Health Care is not healthy and they don't care. Mandate health care insurance is one step away from mandating health care. I can see it all now: "Give Leon mind altering drugs with horrible side effects or you will be charged with negligence and elder abuse." Well, gee, statistically it is safer to not take these drugs and to stay away from doctors altogether. If you trust modern "science" then just look at the Global Warming scare or the Evolution scam. Statistics has supplanted analysis and nobody knows about it.

    36. Mike Sheahen, Hickor says:

      The government take-over of our lives, businesses, and jobs, through such as government-controlled so-called "healthcare", under any and all aliases and disguises such as "public option", "co-op", and whatever, is not only going to happen because we the people have neither the representation nor therefore the votes in Congress to stop it, but it does in fact have nothing to do with helping us reform only our healthcare system (as opposed to our healthcare which is the best, most life-saving in the world [as shown by the most people who come here for it, and even have their lives saved by it, from where they already have government-controlled so-called "healthcare"]), and everything to do with another of the biggest, most misleading, destructive, massive, and contemptuous government elitist and statist grabs for power and money in the history of the United States of America.

      And when it happens, we the people can go ahead and kiss "goodbye" our freedoms, resources, and security, and so also "the last, best hope of mankind" which was republic named the United States of America, as our Founding Fathers risked everything to found it and meant it to be, as we have known it, and for which the most people have risked everything to come here and know it.

      Because not only has it already been shown and proven in history, and is being shown and proven again before our eyes that one of the main ways for government to take total control of the people's lives and everything is through so-called "healthcare", but also because what Alexis De Toqueville said (quote) "The American Republic will endure until politicians realize they can bribe the people with their own (the people's) money" is also being proven true.

      So it's downhill from here, sure enough, as we shall see.

    37. Bob R Geologist, Tuc says:

      Our problem seems two headed with our legislators, a lack of intelligence and a lack of ethics. We have adequate proof of, I believe Mark Twain's assertion, that our legislator compose the largest criminal class in the USA.

    38. DAN MOFFATT says:


    39. rick agosta says:

      More dangerous than h1n1 is the Obama flu sweeping this great country. Good news…there is a vaccine that works. The shot is Reganism and Capitalism. Give it to your children, babies, elderly….two shots for the libs (One will work, but the other one is just because they've been such a pain in the a$$ for the last 9 months they deserve some back.

    40. Lorraine, California says:

      I must admit to being very nervous about a plan we seem to know little about. But it seems counterproductive to offer complaints w/o a solution. This entire series has deteriorated into bashing. When are we going to get proactive? What should we do to help those who have no insurance, because of low limited income or lost jobs? I have heard the complains Heritage, NOW WHAT? Suggest something or find another issue to harp on…

    41. Robert, South Dakota says:

      There is an old, old addage that a house divided cannot stand. This must be used now against the unholy and unnatural alliance that has been created between Pres. Obama, Congress, and "The Press." Think about it–they have been in bed together since the Iowa caucus, and have probably held closed door planning sessions of their current activities since then. What happened to the independent and objective "third leg" of Democracy which The Press used to comprise? Where is the in-depth investigative journalism and professional reporting to which the Public is entitled? Where have all the Bob Woodward's and Walter Chronkites gone? Sounds like the title to a tragicJoan Biaz sogn, doesn't it? Sad but true. While we are unable to do anything concrete with our "elected" officials until November, 2010, we can send a major wake-up call to the D.C. establishment that will get all of their attention. Where does The Press get its primary financial support?? Its subscribers–you and me. I think it is time for an organized boycott of all the vanilla pudding non-objective, goo-goo eyed press publications that you currently purchase or for which you hold subscriptions–even if you picked the top two-three of all you read, it would make a difference. Send them an email/note cancelling your subscription for the remmainder of your term because of their lack of tough, objective, independent jopurnalism and reporting. They can re-fund your subscription, and let them know you will not renew unless they find their backbone and independent objective compass again. I have done this with TV news and several of the national publications I was reading, and boy did the latter cry…We could schedule this for Veterans' Day, and all send the emails the same day in honor of those who have paid dearly for America's Freedoms and Sovereignty, both of which the current D.C. establishment trades away like unwanted currency. God help us all.

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