Texas Longhorns with newborn calf in Bluebonnets

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Alan Maki

Alan Maki
Doing research at the LBJ Library in Austin, Texas

It's time to claim our Peace Dividend

It's time to claim our Peace Dividend

We need to beat swords into plowshares.

We need to beat swords into plowshares.

A program for real change...


What we need is a "21st Century Full Employment Act for Peace and Prosperity" which would make it a mandatory requirement that the president and Congress attain and maintain full employment.

"Voting is easy and marginally useful, but it is a poor substitute for democracy, which requires direct action by concerned citizens"

- Ben Franklin

Let's talk...

Let's talk...

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The dishonest way Obama's supporters promote supplemental healthcare reform in Minnesota for Obama's Wall Street health insurance reform initiatives

Laura K Kochevar

Laura K Kochevar Woo Hoo!!! The Minnesota Health Plan Passes the State House Health Policy Committee 11-6 Thanks to all for their hard work!!!!!


The above was posted to a FaceBook comment to which I responded:

Alan L. Maki
What we need is socialized healthcare... this is the wealthiest country in the world. Any country that can afford to fight wars in three countries at the same time and fund over 800 military bases dotting the globe can do better than this Minnesota Health Plan which places the burden for healthcare costs on the backs of working people instead of where the burden belongs--- on the backs of the corporations and the rich.

What proves to me just how dishonestly this Minnesota Health Plan has been promoted by John Marty and others is that they have refused to tell the people how much their premiums will be... I don't think most of the people supporting this legislation have even bothered to read this bill which will place the cost for healthcare premiums at around $750.00 a month for the average working class family who at present is having problems paying on home mortgages and paying their heating bills. Just what working people need; one more big monthly bill they can't afford... this is not healthcare reform.

Tell John Marty to come clean and tell us how much this legislation is going to cost people in mothly premiums... why wasn't this figure mentioned at the hearing of the State House Policy Committee... this is NOT single-payer universal healthcare; it certainly is not based on the Canadian style health system... it is a gimmick that John Marty is using for another failed bid to get elected governor.
Okay so far as far as discussions go... but, then this poster sent me her response--- which follows below to which she has prohibited me the opportunity to respond... so much for democracy from those who preach it the loudest but then refuse to practice what they preach... but, here is her response, followed by the response from me which she blocked:

Laura K Kochevar commented on her status:

"A good review of frequently asked questions about the Minnesota Health Plan is provided by the Minnesota Universal Health Care Coalition at http://www.facebook.com/l/7ab55;muhcc.org/faq/minnesota-health-plan.

They are not affiliated with any candidate for any office.
The complete text of the legislation can be found here: http://www.facebook.com/l/7ab55;muhcc.org/minnesotahealthplan/billlanguage

Premiums for the plan will be on a sliding fee basis, based on ability to pay.

As the bill indicates, businesses will contribute to financing the plan.

The specific balance of how much will come from any specific family's budget, versus state and private sector contributions is currently being worked out as part of our democratic process, in our legislature. Also, the politically autonomous but publicly accountable Minnesota Health Board established by the plan will have a role in setting premiums and the sliding scale.

Studies are currently underway to assure that the public gets its moneys worth here. The expectation, based on previous empirical, scientific research, is that similar health care systems save states and individuals tons of money. For example, see the report of the Colorado study by the Lewin group at http://www.facebook.com/l/7ab55;www.healthcareforallcolorado.org/?p=34
please note: this study was conducted before Lewin was purchased by UHC and has been extensively peer reviewed and vetted by experts. It's a very high quality study.

With the Minnesota Health Plan, we will pay for the costs associated with just one health payer, not a whole bunch of redundant systems and that system will be accountable to the public. It will be open and transparent. All Minnesotans will have the choice of where to get their care, and the information they need. Everybody will be covered. Quality is part of the plan, because health care reform has got to be about more than just insurance, quality care keeps health up and costs down.

Bottom line: we can all expect lower costs and better health with the Minnesota Health Plan."

New Feature: Reply to this email to comment on this status.

To see the comment thread, follow the link below:

The Facebook Team
And this is my response which the poster blocked:

I read your response; but, I also read the complete legislation. In fact, I studied it very thoroughly. Your claim is that sliding scale costs will be provided in due time. In my opinion, the time to disclose the costs is when looking for support, not later. Since a big part of this health care reform debate is about "costs" it seems to me like anyone claiming this legislation will cut costs would want to prove this.

Also, what makes me believe this is little more than a campaign "gimmick" by John Marty aimed at rallying his middle class and professional base of loyal supporters (midle class as distinct from working class) is that this legislation makes a point of talking about the need to educate people about the things that make them less healthy... well, John Marty was among those who opposed including casinos in the "Freedom to Breath" legislation... there are over 40,000 workers employed in the casino industry in Minnesota forced to work at poverty wages and without any rights in these smoke-filled casinos. Apparently John Marty isn't interested in educating the managements of these casinos on healthcare issues... but, then again, some of these casino managers are among his most loyal campaign contributors.

What we need is what is socialized health care... it is the only solution to this healthcare mess. Real single-payer universal healthcare--- which this Minnesota Health Act is not--- would be a first step towards socialized healthcare or public healthcare depending on the term one wants to use.

Socialized healthcare would also create thousands of new jobs in Minnesota... good jobs with good working conditions and good pay.

Minnesotans have long voiced their support for socialized healthcare:

No-fee/no-premium, all-inclusive, comprehensive, pre-natal to grave, universal healthcare; publicly funded, publicly administered and publicly delivered.

John Marty is proposing a boon-doggle as a campaign gimmick and as soon as soon as the complete costs of the proposed legislation come to light the Minnesota Health Act will be as dead as all these people who are dying because they can't afford healthcare now.

And, as you see, the John Marty and his DFL'ers aren't even able to protect the poor from Pawlenty's very mean cuts to healthcare so how would they ever enact legislation that is real healthcare reform... the Democrats are not going to move forward on real healthcare reform even if they completely dominated both the House and Senate and had a Democratic governor... even if John Marty was governor he would not push forward his own legislation because it would come under such overwhelming attack.

By-the-way, this legislation doesn't have any support at the grassroots or rank-and-file level among working class voters; why not?

We already have a very good single-payer universal healthcare resolution that is part of the DFL's "Action Agenda" based on what most Minnesotans consider to be Canadian-style healthcare so why would you be putting forward this resolution of yours which claims to be for single-payer nationally but a very reactionary piece of state legislation which the PNHP's national leadership will not even certify as being single-payer universal healthcare or "Medicare for All?"

Alan L. Maki

Also, notice the resolution these people are pushing to undermine the present resolution which is part of the DFL's "Action Agenda" supported by 72% of the delegates to the 2006 Minnesota DFL State Convention. They dishonestly try to "piggy-back" their very reactionary state legislation on support for national single-payer knowing full well Barack Obama and the Democrats have killed single-payer:

(from the 2008-2010 Party Platform, the Action Agenda, and Legislative Priorities)

WHEREAS, lack of health insurance is a cause of 45,000 deaths per year in the U.S.


WHEREAS, 62% of personal bankruptcies are due to medical expenses and over 75% of these people have health insurance


WHEREAS, Over 47 million people in this country lack health insurance, millions more are under-insured, over 450,000 Minnesotans lack insurance coverage and minorities are disproportionately likely to be without insurance


WHEREAS, Federal reforms will not achieve universal coverage nor adequately control costs, and will perpetuate a fragmented and inequitable health care system


WHEREAS, a single payer system is the only system of health care that can assure universal and equitable coverage, portability and choice of provider, while also controlling costs,

BE IT RESOLVED that the Democratic Farmer Labor Party supports and works to enact a universal, single-payer health care plan on the federal level and the single-payer Minnesota Health Act at the state level.
"Senator Paul Wellstone, who was widely known as the "The Conscience of the Senate," wrote that he spent 85 percent of his time fighting Republican attacks on working families. Were Paul still alive, he'd be fighting for the thousands who die or are driven into bankruptcy every year due to a lack of health coverage" George Erikson
Once again, I ask: Where are the costs to working people associated with this Minnesota Health Act and where are the costs for business?
In fact, the costs for healthcare leveled on business will be reduced while working people will bear a sharply increased burden... and this is the main fact the supporters of this legislation do not want to divulge.
In the name of "progressive healthcare reform" they are attempting to sell us another very reactionary piece of state legislation meant to compliment Obama's sellout of single-payer.
Slick and shrewd politics; dishonest politics. 

The very same people who sold us Obama as being "progressive" are now trying the exact same dirty and dishonest tactics in trying to perpetuate one more hoax.

It is a good thing State Senator John Marty is floundering in trying to become an insurance salesman like Barack Obama.
Notice how they even invoke the name of former United States Senator Paul Wellstone to support their lies and dirty deeds in undermining the struggle for single-payer universal healthcare based upon the Canadian healthcare system as a first step to socialized healthcare.

I would also note that State Senator John Marty uses the word "reform" as deceptively and dishonestly as any health insurance salesman promotes their health insurance plans--- all very good on paper but quite another thing when you get sick.

The very word "reform" means to make something better; quite the opposite of Obama's health insurance legislation and John Marty's supplemental state legislative proposal.

Something to think about...

Alan L. Maki