Saturday, January 23, 2010

Is bad Healthcare reform dead? Does good health insurance reform have a chance now? Look for answers in healthcare stock prices.

With all that has happened this past week, I thought an update on the Healthcare stocks was in order. If you have been reading here for a while, I have said countless times, that if you wanted to know if the proposed Legislation by the Democrats was good for average Americans, just watch the price of the stocks of United Healthcare and Wellpoint.

As you can see from the chart above, back on Dec, 5th, the Democrats conceded that the Public Option appeared dead. On Monday, Dec. 7th both stocks started to rise and gained almost 30% at the peak of each chart. On Tuesday, in Massachusetts voted in a Republican Senator to fill former Ted Kennedy's seat, a significant upset which continues to reverberate throughout the Democratic Party and the News media, this weekend. Again, as you can see from the charts, this election of a Republican, which denies the Democrats of their super majority of 60 votes, also appears to deny the Health Insurance companies the benefits they were hoping to get with the proposed legislation. This is signified by the drop after the market close on Tuesday, Jan. 19th and the market close of Jan. 20th and had continued through the day yesterday.

If you assume for a minute that what is good for Health Insurance companies is bad for average Americans, then this move is good and hopefully will continue. The Healthcare legislation needs to be bipartisan.

My suggestions for this are as follows:
1. What is needed is simplicity, not a 2008 page Bill.
2. Insurance companies must not deny coverage for pre-existing conditions any longer.
3. People should be able to buy Insurance across State lines, as they can do for car insurance.
4. Tort reform is also important and should be included in any proposed legislation.
5. Everyone should be required from age 25 and over to purchase Health Insurance.

This would be a good start for bipartisanship and would still allow an unprecedented victory for the Obama Administration and the Democratic Party.

Labels: , , , , , , , , ,


Blogger Minneloushe said...

I agree, Charles. However, your point No. 1 is the hard part - "simplicity" is not something Congress does. The Tower of Babel is a powerful and enduring metaphor for human activity in all areas of life, including government. Simplicity would mean, in my view, simply extending Medicare to include anyone who does not currently have insurance, mandating coverage, as you say, from age 25 (SCHIP and the extension of coverage for college-age kids up to 26 years would cover the rest). If you think Congress is going to go for that, good luck. The Republican agenda is, in my opinion, not to create meaningful reform, but to block everything and then scream that the Dems are incapable of governing, Obama is a do-nothing president who doesn't care about the little guy and his job, and run on this slander in 2010 and 2012. Simple bumper-sticker lies have always worked better than complex analysis and rational thought in every field from pop-music to pop-politics.
In American politics, the cowboy always wins - the macho, John Wayne image tough guy. Note that John Wayne, himself, was a wimp and a coward who avoided military service - in World War II, when all the stars volunteered, Wayne weaseled out of service. This hypocrisy is reflected in the Bush/Cheney he-man war-talk, as Glen Greenwald has pointed so out often. But it does tend to win elections by appealing to the public's desire to feel empowered.
Until the Democrats learn to get what Colbert blithely calls "balls," they will continue to be gobsmacked by Rovian politics at its most transparent. Of course, the right-wing media and complacent he-said/she-said mainstream media are complicit in all this - just seek out and listen to Chris Matthews get all excited about Bush's 'manliness' for his "mission accomplished" kabuki.

4:49 AM  
Blogger Minneloushe said...

Nice speech yester-eve. Obama allowed himself to be himself - boyish, conversational, and still a bit "professorial" - and he showed the Repubs for the obstinate opposition they are without becoming mean-spirited or nasty. He defended the stimulus well (i.e., it has not "failed"). Let's see if he kicks some ass on health care reform.
I liked him praising Nancy Pelosi repeatedly - though indirectly. "The House already passed this ..." was good to hear.
May I assume you also liked the speech ?
He's making me a believer, again.
- jw

8:32 AM  
Blogger Charles Amico said...

I agree JW. But even more impressive was President Obama's meeting with Republican leaders yesterday. He walked into the mouth of the beast alone and with no scripted notes and beat the pants off of the 140 Republican leaders which had gathered. It was a sight to behold and showed this President in contrast to Bush and previous Presidents, as Obama is one of the brightest, articulate and witty of any in my lifetime. I am thrilled we have him as our President so far. His arguments made the Republicans arguments look foolish and nonsensical. Republicans won't offer this President an opportunity to do this again, especially televised! :)

6:08 AM  
Blogger Minneloushe said...

Charles, I agree of course. I also think Bill Clinton could have done just as well. But I'm waiting for our President to start using his bully pulpit more, and to get the people behind him - for their own good. He clearly thanked Nancy Pelosi in his SOTU address, and she has delivered for him time and again; but he needs to start channeling LBJ a bit more, and maybe FDR and Harry Truman. "No more Mr. Nice Guy"! Reagan, whom he seems foolishly to admire so much, had the technique down pat of smiling while stabbing the middle class and poor in the back. While Reagan was, in my opinion, Chaucer's "Smylere with the knyfe under the cloake," one may smile without the knife - indeed, one may smile while delivering beneficial banking reforms and especially health care for all.

5:39 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

Technorati Profile