Friday, January 7, 2011

A Message to Congress

As the new session of congress begins, I would like to say a few things.

First of all, to all the members of congress who are still current or were just voted out but helped pass a lot of important legislation in the so called "lame duck" session. THANK YOU.  Nothing pisses me off more than when the Senate and House sit around for a couple months because some people are leaving.  All members of the House or Senate were elected for a two or six year term and I expect them to work in one way or another the entire term.  Hey, I knew I was going to be laid off last summer, and you know what would have happened if I sat on my ass and didn't do my job those couple months before my layoff?  I would have been fired much sooner...without pay.  Every time there is a lame duck session where the congress does nothing, I as a tax payer want my money back.  I understand if there was nothing to do but to stall just because some people are leaving or control is changing to a different party is dumb.  Do your job...the entire time.  So thank you for doing that one of the first times in my life.

Secondly, to all the incoming Republicans, Tea Partiers, and existing congressmen who now want to spend the first couple weeks of the new session trying to completely repeal the 2010 Health Care reform...Fuck off.  It's not perfect, that is granted but it actually does have a lot of good parts.  So instead of wasting time trying to repeal the whole thing which nearly every considers next to impossible - repeal most likely won't pass the Democratically controlled Senate, and even if it did the President will veto, and let's be honest you do not have the votes to override.  Instead of wasting time showing off that you are against healthcare reform (a pretty stupid position in my book - why do you want to deny people with pre-existing conditions?), why don't you instead work to fix the parts that aren't as great?  You might actually be able to make some changes instead of just wasting time and my (tax payer's) money on useless endeavorers...because honestly doing that sounds like the typical "business as usual" partisan bullshit that most of you ran against.  PS - you get health care coverage that takes effect immediately, and don't have to worry about pre-conditions (coverage which is paid for 75% by tax payers).  Stop trying to deny every once else a chance for similar benefits.

Finally, just do your job.  Your job is not to be a total idiot listening to your party and doing everything that they want.  Your job is not to listen to big business or take lots of contributions for your political future (or your pocket).  Your job is to your constituents.  Listen to them, do what they want...we are your boss - not your republican or democratic leaders.  Benefit the citizens of the United States instead of looking out for your own interests.  There is a reason that it is called Public Service.  If you do this, the public will take care of you.



Anonymous said...

Mike for Congress!!!


Michael said...

No way...I know I am far too corrupt to be a good congressman. OK, not corrupt but definitely only a one termer...I'd take money from everyone and then vote however I wanted anyways. I'm sure I'd fall under some sort of ethics investigation.

Plus - I'm much more presidential material!

Lax Guy said...

I agree with the point of this blog. Congress spends way to much time not doing anything as it is, but even more so during lame duck periods. Good or bad, at least they tried to get stuff done for once. Of course it begs the question as to why these efforts were not made sooner...
As far as the Health Care Reform Act, it is misnamed at best and utter bullshit at worst. Call a spade a spade - it is Insurance Reform. As in, reform insurance by taking away the selection (pre-existing conditions) and cost saving measures (life time maximums) that insurance companies use to remain in business AND keep premiums somewhat affordable in order to completely turn public sentiment against them and pave the way for a socialized government run insurance program. Insurance premiums are rising BECAUSE of this legislation. The Health Care Reform Act removed the safeguards to protect relatively healthy people like you and me from paying higher rates due to people that wait until Stage 4 cancer rips their system to get insurance and visit a doctor.
This bill never once addresses ACTUAL HEALTH CARE issues. Why not limit how much anesthesiologists charge? Why not require all providers to abide by a reasonable fee - similar to Medicare's approved amounts for those covered by Medicare; providers write the difference off anyway. For that matter, shouldn't the government start by forcing all providers to accept Medicare and Tricare assignment and rates?
Look, I hate insurance as much as the next guy, but I also live in Des Moines - the second largest insurance community in the world. Our city - and much of our state - is funded by insurance companies through corporate and employee taxes. Insurance is a bigger part of our modern economy than agriculture. While I do not advocate to keep insurance, I am definitely not in favor of more than 50% of our city suddenly becoming unemployed either.
I agree with most that health care is a basic human right. But having somebody else pay for it is not (whether it is a private company or the government). We did not need the type of reform that was passed. We needed a reform that would ground the health care industry's costs in reality; instead we got something that made insurance the uber-bad guy.
The media has gleefully played their role in this campaign of misinformation as evidenced locally by KCCI's constant negatively towards Wellmark's rate increases, which affect relatively few Iowans and are LOWER than nearly all of their competitors. The funny thing is, KCCI never reports that Wellmark is a nonprofit company whose CEO makes a fraction of what most insurance companies' executives make. Wellmark has enacted policies to encourage its employees to lead healthier lifestyles. The goal being that their families, friends, and neighbors will follow suit. That, even more than ANY government reform, will go a long way towards fixing health care.
*end rant*

Anonymous said...

"A message to Michael"

The health care has some good points, but I would not let a person put a load of crap on my front porch just because there is a flower growing out of it.

The guy Sue told to get a life and quit living off hers

Michael said...

LG - I don't disagree with you. I think was just a first step. Our health care system is messed up. No one can afford it. I don't know all the reasons but I have heard several stories where other companies enjoy drastically reduced costs basically because citizens and insurance refuse to pay higher prices. Think drugs in Canada and MRIs in Japan (remember hearing that they only cost $200 in Japan because insurance refuses to pay $1500, plus since they are cheaper more people get them so the machine is paid for quicker). I don't know all the answers and I don't want to drive all the insurance companies out of business either. But there needs to be some balance between affordable health care, insurance, and people making a profit. I don't mind forcing everyone to buy insurance as I don't think people should be able to just wait until they need major attention and nearly everyone will eventually need it...but I am glad friends of mine can finally get insurance even though they had asthma when they were a kid. It is not an easy process and I don't think we should stop here. Catastrophic only insurance? I'd be ok with that. I don't know, but I am sure we can come up with something that works better.

Steve - I am not even sure what that means.