Observations on the world today.

Friday, October 15, 2004

One Last Debate Observation Post 

In the final debate the other night, President Bush said:
Anyway, let me quote the Lewin report. The Lewin report is a group of folks who are not politically affiliated. They analyzed the senator's plan. It cost $1.2 trillion.

The Lewin report accurately noted that there are going to be 20 million people, over 20 million people added to government-controlled health care. It would be the largest increase in government health care ever.
So I did a little research, and found this press release by the Lewin Group. In part, it says:
1) How many people who currently lack health insurance would become covered under each candidate’s program?

• As a baseline, The Lewin Group projects that 49.5 million Americans will lack health insurance coverage by 2006, absent intervention of some kind (2006 was used as the benchmark for when the proposed reforms of each candidate would be implemented).
• According to The Lewin Group analysis, the Bush plan would cover 8.2 million new people. The Bush plan would reduce the number of uninsured to 41.3 million people, a reduction of 17%.
• The Kerry plan would cover 25.2 million new people. The Kerry plan would reduce the number
of uninsured to 24.3 million people, a reduction of 51%.
Point Kerry. Next in the press release, we find this:
2) How much money would each program cost the federal and state governments, consumers and other financial contributors over the 10-year span following implementation in 2006?

The analysis demonstrates that:

• Federal net expenditures would increase by $227.5 billion under the Bush plan and by $1,249.0
billion under the Kerry plan.
• State net expenditures would decrease by $19.9 billion under the Bush plan and by $343.5 billion
under the Kerry plan.
• Employer health spending under each plan would decrease – a drop of $4.7 billion dollars under the Bush plan and $52.1 billion under the Kerry plan.
Okay, so a couple of improtant points. First Bush was right when he said that the Kerry plan adds $1.2 trillion to the budget, but he fails to note that Kerry also pays for that by rolling back the tax cut given to the top tax bracket. Bush's plan, by comparrison, adds nearly a quarter of a trillion dollars right onto the deficit. Also, the Kerry plan saves employers and families and the states more money, and it insures more people. Thank you Lewin Group, and thank you President Bush for pointing us to one more source to help us understand why Bush must go.

While we're talking healthcare; one more quote from the debate:
Bob, we relied upon a company out of England to provide about half of the flu vaccines for the United States citizen, and it turned out that the vaccine they were producing was contaminated. And so we took the right action and didn't allow contaminated medicine into our country. We're working with Canada to hopefully -- that they'll produce a -- help us realize the vaccine necessary to make sure our citizens have got flu vaccinations during this upcoming season.
I see, so we can't reimport American drugs from Canada because of the risk of terrorist tampering, but we can import English flu vaccine. Except that the English flu vaccine is tainted so we're going to import some from Canada?



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