Posts Tagged ‘$2.5 trillion’

CBO Says Real 10-Year Cost of Senate ObamaCare Bill Still $2.5 Trillion

December 21, 2009

The American people will pay an additional one trillion dollars in taxes over ten years than they otherwise would have paid to finance the Democrats’ takeover of health care.  That is a brutal fact.

When the Democrats say their bill is “deficit neutral” what they mean is that they made drastic cuts in the Medicare budget and drastic increases in our taxes in order to create the illusion that it was deficit neutral.

Here’s some more brutal facts that your mainstream media will not tell you about regarding health care.

CBO: Real 10-Year Cost of Senate Bill Still $2.5 Trillion

With Obamacare, you get the good, the bad, and the ugly — except for the first part.

The Congressional Budget Office’s score is in for the final Senate health bill, and it’s amazing how little Americans would get for so much.

The Democrats are irresponsibly and disingenuously claiming that the bill would cost $871 billion over 10 years. But that’s not what the CBO says. Rather, the CBO says that $871 billion would be the costs from 2010 to 2019 for expansions in insurance coverage alone. But less than 2 percent of those “10-year costs” would kick in before the fifth year of that span. In its real first 10 years (2014 to 2023), the CBO says that the bill would cost $1.8 trillion — for insurance coverage expansions alone. Other parts of the bill would cost approximately $700 billion more, bringing the bill’s full 10-year tab to approximately $2.5 trillion — according to the CBO.

In those real first 10 years (2014 to 2023), Americans would have to pay over $1 trillion in additional taxes, over $1 trillion would be siphoned out of Medicare (over $200 billion out of Medicare Advantage alone) and spent on Obamacare, and deficits would rise by over $200 billion
. They would rise, that is, unless Congress follows through on the bill’s pledge to cut doctors’ payments under Medicare by 21 percent next year and never raise them back up — which would reduce doctors’ enthusiasm for seeing Medicare patients dramatically.

And what would Americans get in return for this staggering sum? Well, the CBO says that health care premiums would rise, and the Chief Actuary at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services says that the percentage of the Gross Domestic Product spent on health care would rise from 17 percent today to 21 percent by the end of 2019Nationwide health care costs would be $234 billion higher than under current law. How’s that for “reform”?

Even MoveOn.org says that the bill is “a massive giveaway” to private insurance companies. The CBO estimates that, from 2015-25, private insurers would receive $1.0 trillion in subsidies from the American taxpayer — the insurers’ apparent price for giving up their freedom and being controlled by the government. Congress would mandate that Americans buy the insurers’ product and would redirect massive sums of taxpayer money to make that mandate more feasible. So, if insurance companies are your idea of a worthy object of philanthropy, then Obamacare is for you.

And this is the bill that Ben Nelson has decided to support?

One hopes that Nebraska voters — and all other voters in other states who have sent Democrats to Washington — are making a list and checking it twice, keeping track of votes on Obamacare.

As Harry Reid keeps senators in session rather than letting them go home to be with their families and celebrate Christmas, it’s important to remember that this bill would not go into effect in any meaningful way until more than an Olympiad from now. Thus, it is the American voters — and not the current Democratic Congress or the current president — who will ultimately decide its fate. Providing reminders to representatives in both chambers of that in the coming days will be crucial to beating back the onslaught of proposed legislation that, even if it passes the Senate, would at least have to passed again by the House and would likely have to go back through both chambers in compromised form.

Posted by Jeffrey H. Anderson on December 19, 2009 07:49 PM | Permalink

There’s a frightening game being played with the truth.  And willingly or not, the CBO is helping the Obama administration lie to the American people.

A big part of the problem is that the CBO has to take Congress’ word for everything in their scoring – and the Congress (especially this Congress) is a bunch of liars.

If Congress has a huge spending bill, and tells the CBO that they will pay for it by picking the right numbers and hitting the mega-jackpot every year for the next 20 years, then the CBO must assume that the bill will be paid for – and thus “deficit neutral” in its scoring.

Maybe I’m not being clear enough.  So I’ll provide another example.  If Congress says that they will pay for their spending bill by summoning a winged fairy who will wave a magic wand and create a trillion dollars from nowhere, the CBO must count that trillion dollars in their scoring toward a “deficit neutral” bill.

Back in July, Obama summoned the director of the CBO, Douglas Elmendorf, to the White House. Republicans were outraged by this unprecedented event.  The Wall Street Journal had an article entitled, “Bullying CBO.”

Some have thought that Elmendorf was in fact intimidated, because their scores suddenly became much friendlier to ObamaCare.  But I personally believe it was simply a matter of the White House learning how to write a bill so that it would appear “deficit neutral” in a CBO score.  Democrats, in other words, learned how to use the right gimmicks to get the right results.

So if Congress says that it will increase taxes by a trillion dollars, then the CBO has to take it as gospel truth in its calculations.  But the fact of the matter is that tax revenues go down dramatically as tax rates go up (and see here also) for the simple reason that more and more people change their behavior and start sheltering their assets.  In the same way, when a bunch of new fees are imposed, people will start buying less and less of what will suddenly become more and more expensive.

The more of your own money you are allowed to keep, the harder you will work, and the more you will risk your money by investing.  The more you are taxed, the more you will adjust your behavior by protecting what you have, and the less you will be willing to take risks for a shrinking reward.

Bottom line: the federal government will collect far less in revenue than it thinks it will.  Revenues are already down dramatically as the White House and congressional Democrats have repeatedly vowed to end the Bush tax cuts (i.e. raise taxes) and increase taxes across the board.

In the same way, if Democrats tell the CBO that they will create savings by cutting the Medicare budget to the tune of half a trillion dollars and apply that “savings” to ObamaCare, then the CBO must assume that that will be the case.

It’s frankly difficult to believe that the Democrats will actually gut Medicare as they are saying they will do.  Will they really take $500 billion from Medicare?  Really?  And utterly outrage seniors who have counted on that benefit for decades?  If they do, they will pay dearly for it in every election until those seniors finally die.  If they don’t, you can add at least half a trillion dollars to what the Democrats say their bill will cost.

The same thing applies to the “doctor fix.”  Democrats will either follow through with their plan to make Medicare so expensive to doctors and hospitals that many medical professionals stop accepting it, or else they won’t.  If they do, the Medicare system will collapse.  If they don’t, then you can add hundreds of billions more to the cost of their health care plan.

The Washington Post put it this way:

A plan to slash more than $500 billion from future Medicare spending — one of the biggest sources of funding for President Obama’s proposed overhaul of the nation’s health-care system — would sharply reduce benefits for some senior citizens and could jeopardize access to care for millions of others, according to a government evaluation released Saturday. The report, requested by House Republicans, found that Medicare cuts contained in the health package approved by the House on Nov. 7 are likely to prove so costly to hospitals and nursing homes that they could stop taking Medicare altogether.”

And to pay for that fiasco, the Democrats are playing games that even liberals recognize are gimmickry and trickery.

As the government increasingly takes over, costs are going to go up (as they always do when government starts administering programs) and quality is going to go down.

The very people people who are going to increase our health care spending by trillions of dollars are preaching fiscal responsibility and the need to reduce our spending even as they do it.

The hypocrisy, stupidity, and lunacy of the government is enough to make one scream.

ObamaCare Is Cloward-Piven Strategy In Microcosm

December 11, 2009

First of all, what is the Cloward-Piven strategy:

From Discover The Networks:

First proposed in 1966 and named after Columbia University sociologists Richard Andrew Cloward and Frances Fox Piven, the “Cloward-Piven Strategy” seeks to hasten the fall of capitalism by overloading the government bureaucracy with a flood of impossible demands, thus pushing society into crisis and economic collapse. [...]

The key to sparking this rebellion would be to expose the inadequacy of the welfare state. Cloward-Piven’s early promoters cited radical organizer Saul Alinsky as their inspiration. “Make the enemy live up to their (sic) own book of rules,” Alinsky wrote in his 1972 book Rules for Radicals. When pressed to honor every word of every law and statute, every Judaeo-Christian moral tenet, and every implicit promise of the liberal social contract, human agencies inevitably fall short. The system’s failure to “live up” to its rule book can then be used to discredit it altogether, and to replace the capitalist “rule book” with a socialist one.

Newsmax offers a further description of Clowar-Piven, and raises the very real possibility that Obama not only studied the strategy, but in fact even studied under Richard Cloward:

Their strategy to create political, financial, and social chaos that would result in revolution blended Alinsky concepts with their more aggressive efforts at bringing about a change in U.S. government. To achieve their revolutionary change, Cloward and Piven sought to use a cadre of aggressive organizers assisted by friendly newsmedia to force a re-distribution of the nation’s wealth. It would be telling to know if Obama, during his years at Columbia, had occasion to meet Cloward and study the Cloward-Piven Strategy.

On my own view, Obama has a “win we win, lose we win” strategy.  To wit, the Obama administration and the Democrat Party are pursuing incredibly risky policies across the board.  If the country and the economy somehow manages to survive these measures (which I would compare to a man surviving a poisoning), Obama and the Democrats will claim victory.  If, on the other hand, the entire national system collapses due to these shockingly terrible policies, the liberals believe that a terrified, hungry public will turn to the government for help – and allow the statists to restructure the nation into a completely socialist system.

The Obama administration, on my view, consists of a collective of fiscal sociopaths.  They don’t even care about the harm that they are doing, as long as they accomplish their self-serving objective of statism, in which they ultimately wield the levers of totalitarian power.

Obama’s chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, said that you never want a serious crisis to go to waste.  The very real question is how far these people are willing to go to milk a crisis to impose their agenda; and how willing they would be to create a crisis to finish the job.

Now armed with the above information about Cloward-Piven, and the above thesis that Obama and the Democrats are actually employing it, let us consider the Democrats’ and Obama’s attempt to take over the health care system.

Far too many Democrats want a socialist single-payer system, and liberals like Democrat Representative Anthony Weiner think the current Senate Democrat proposal is just the ticket to take us there:

New York Rep. Anthony Weiner, an outspoken backer of the public option, hailed the expansion of Medicare as an “unvarnished” triumph for Democrats, like himself, who have been pushing for a single-payer government-run health care system. “Never mind the camel’s nose; we’ve got his head and his neck in the tent.”

The generally left-leaning Washington Post agrees with Rep. Weiner, saying that the

last-minute introduction of this idea within the broader context of health reform raises numerous questions — not least of which is whether this proposal is a far more dramatic step toward a single-payer system than lawmakers on either side realize. [...]

The irony of this late-breaking Medicare proposal is that it could be a bigger step toward a single-payer system than the milquetoast public option plans rejected by Senate moderates as too disruptive of the private market.

It is amazing that when the people overwhelmingly rejected the public option, Democrats responded by giving them the public option on steroids.

But let us take a look at who have aligned against this monstrosity, and see just how bad it truly is.

The Mayo Clinic:

“Expanding this system to persons 55 to 64 years old would ultimately hurt patients by accelerating the financial ruin of hospitals and doctors across the country. A majority of Medicare providers currently suffer great financial loss under the program. Mayo Clinic alone lost $840 million last year under Medicare. As a result of these types of losses, a growing number of providers have begun to limit the number of Medicare patients in their practices.  Despite these provider losses, Medicare has not curbed overall spending, especially after adjusting for benefits covered and the cost shift from Medicare to private insurance.  This is clearly an unsustainable model, and one that would be disastrous for our nation’s hospitals, doctors and eventually our patients if expanded to even more beneficiaries.”

The Wall Street Journal rightly calls this fiasco “The Worst Bill Ever.”  Why?

As Congress’s balance sheet drowns in trillions of dollars in new obligations, the political system will have no choice but to start making cost-minded decisions about which treatments patients are allowed to receive. Democrats can’t regulate their way out of the reality that we live in a world of finite resources and infinite wants. Once health care is nationalized, or mostly nationalized, medical rationing is inevitable—especially for the innovative high-cost technologies and drugs that are the future of medicine.

The Dean of the Harvard Medical School gave it a “failing grade.”  Dr. Jeffrey Flier argued that:

In effect, while the legislation would enhance access to insurance, the trade-off would be an accelerated crisis of health-care costs and perpetuation of the current dysfunctional system—now with many more participants. This will make an eventual solution even more difficult. Ultimately, our capacity to innovate and develop new therapies would suffer most of all.

The California Medical Association came out strongly against the Democrat plan:

The state’s largest doctors group is opposing healthcare legislation being debated in the Senate this week, saying it would increase local healthcare costs and restrict access to care for elderly and low-income patients.

The California Medical Assn. represents more than 35,000 physicians statewide, making it the second-largest state medical association in the country after Texas. [...]

“The Senate bill came so short that we could not support it, even though we solidly support healthcare reform,” said Dr. Dev GnanaDev, medical director at Arrowhead Regional Medical Center in San Bernardino, who also serves on the association’s executive committee.

Doctors who oppose the Senate bill are concerned that it would would shift Medicare funding from urban to rural areas, move responsibility for Medicare oversight away from Congress by creating an Independent Medicare Commission and, ultimately, decrease Medicare reimbursement rates.

That “Independent Medicare Commission” is just one of the many “death panels” this bill would create.  One hundred and eleven death panels, to be precise.

This is “It’s-Friday-the-13th-and-Jason-Voorhees-is-a-real-monster-and-he’s-actually-in-your-house” terrifying.  The Democrats will collapse our health care system.  People will die.

And I submit to you that the Democrats want to crash the health care system – which is the best in the world after adjusting for murders, suicides, and accident deaths – and replace it with a socialized system that would dramatically expand the power and scope of government.

On top of the disastrous impact on patient care would be the disastrous impact on the national economy.  The health care system that the Senate Democrats would impose on Americans would cost at least $2.5 trillion every ten years following its initial roll-out.  How much more can we afford?  How many more cards can we add to our house before the whole thing comes crashing down?

Why would anybody want to impose a system that is so terribly bad, and which will cost so terribly much?

When you think of the trillions in spending that this administration has already accumulated, and then add the additional $200 billion a year (and $1,761 per family) cost of Obama’s cap-and-trade energy fiasco, you can’t help but begin to wonder if there is an intentional determination to overwhelm our system and “push society into crisis and economic collapse.”

ObamaCare Will Increase Insurance Premiums

December 1, 2009

One of the fundamental promises of Democrats is that their massive takeover of health care would deliver lower costs, delivering an economy of scale.

The problem is that government has never been very good at lowering the cost of anything.  Quite the contrary.

And what has always been true before turns out to be true again.

Let’s get right to the nitty gritty of the CBO report:

“CBO and JCT estimate that the average premium per person covered (including dependents) for new nongroup policies would be about 10 percent to 13 percent higher in 2016 than the average premium for nongroup coverage in that same year under current law. About half of those enrollees would receive government subsidies that would reduce their costs well below the premiums that would be charged for such policies under current law,” the report says.

Now, Democrats are trying to argue that about the “about half of those enrollees” who would have lower premiums due to receiving government subsidies.  But understand: the costs are objectively higher by 10-13% than they would have been had we done absolutely nothing at all.  The mere fact that some people are getting transfer (i.e., welfare) payments from the government (i.e., from still more government taxing and borrowing) doesn’t in any way change that fact.

Stop and think about it: it would be a lot cheaper for the government to provide people with subsidies based on the lower costs of doing nothing else to mess with the health care system.  It is an outright fraud for Democrats to say they will lower costs.

I like the way Mitch McConnell put it:

“The bottom line is this: After 2,074 pages and trillions more in government spending, massive new taxes and a half-trillion dollars in cuts to Medicare for seniors, most people, according to the Congressional Budget Office, will end up paying more or seeing no significant savings,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said in a statement. The health insurance industry’s lobbying arms also proclaimed that the report confirmed their similar warnings.

This is just a terrible bill, and a terrible philosophy.

Democrats have done absolutely NOTHING that will reduce the costs of healthcare.  They are diametrically opposed to tort reform, which would lower the costs of premiums by lowering doctors’ exposure to risks, simply because the sharks – I mean lawyers – who sue everything that walks, crawls, swims or flies are a major Democrat special interest group.

In the same way, Democrats talk about “increasing competition,” and yet they are fundamentally opposed to actually doing anything of the sort.  A primary reason healthcare costs have increased so much is due to the fact that insurance companies are specifically forbidden from being allowed to compete across state lines.  Republicans want competition; Democrats do not.  Rather, Democrats want to continue to mandate special interests-based coverage by dictating to insurance companies what coverage they must offer.

The other thing is that Democrats talk about the fraud they are offering is “deficit neutral.”  It is no such thing.  They played budget gimmicks, taxing for four years before having to pay out any benefits.  If you look at the costs of the NEXT ten years – when benefits will actually be paid out for all ten years – the cost will be $2.5 trillion, rather than the $848 billion that the Demcorats talk about in their tax-for-ten-year-spend-for-six plan.

Taxes will be raised by over $500 billion.  Medicare will be cut by $500 billion.  $500 billion is another way of saying half a trillion dollars.  That’s how the Democrats get their “savings”: they bleed it from taxpayers, and they steal it from their previous commitments to senior citizens.

The Democrats’ bill raises taxes, guts Medicare, and raises premiums.  You can start to understand why the Dean of the Harvard School of Medicine gave the bill a failing grade.

We Can’t Just Ignore It: Democrat Bill WILL Ration Your Health Care

November 23, 2009

Mammograms – or the lack of them – are all the buzz right now.

They are serving as warning shots of the massive health care rationing to come if the Democrat health plan becomes law.

The former head of the National Institute of Health says that women should very forcefully ignore the recommendations of the Obama administration’s U.S. Preventative Services Task Force:

WASHINGTON, Nov. 22 (UPI) — The former head of the U.S. National Institutes of Health says American women should ignore the mammogram recommendations of a government breast cancer panel.

Speaking on “Fox News Sunday,” former NIH chief Dr. Bernadine Healy, now health editor for the magazine U.S. News & World Report, said she disagreed with the assessment of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, a 16-member panel assembled by Department of Health and Human Services. The group this month recommended women under 50 forgo routine breast cancer tests and instead get mammograms individually in consultation with their doctors.

Asked if women should ignore the panel, Healy said, “Oh, I’m saying very powerfully ignore them, because unequivocally — and they agreed with this — this will increase the number of women dying of breast cancer.”

But as it turns out, neither women nor anyone else can ignore these recommendations.

Rationing via “death panel” is coming home to roost, to paraphrase Jeremiah Wright.

Sunday morning, on ABC’s “This Week,” with George Stephanopoulos, we saw how a fairly harmless sounding paragraph in a bill can have massive consequences on real people.

George Stephanaopoulos and Republican Rep. Marsha Blackburn – when they were actually get a word in edgewise over Democrat Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s constant grandstanding – underscored that the country will find itself facing rationed health care:

BLACKBURN: And, George, this is exactly how it happens. If you go to page 1,296 of the House bill, the engrossed copy, and you began to read in title three of that bill, on preventive and wellness services, and you get down to section 2301, this is what happens. In section 3131 of that bill, it changes the Preventive Services Task Force to the Clinical Preventive Services Task Force.

Then, you go back and you see that that task force on preventive clinical services is tasked with rating A, B, C, D, or I all preventive services. Then you go back into section 222 of the bill

(CROSSTALK)

BLACKBURN: Yes, I have read this bill. And it indicates what would be paid or covered. And this is where the actual link comes, and I’ll read it for you. In section 2301, it says, “All recommendations of the Preventive Services Task Force” — that’s the group that did the mammograms — “and the Task Force on Community Preventive Services, as in existence on the day before the date of the enactment of this act, shall be considered to be recommendations of the Task Force on Clinical Preventive Services.”

STEPHANOPOULOS: So the guidelines — the point is that the guidelines then…

BLACKBURN: They become the law.

STEPHANOPOULOS: … would — would become…

BLACKBURN: They become the law, the mandate.

STEPHANOPOULOS: … would become controlling.

WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: No, they would not be.

BLACKBURN: Yes, they do.

WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: And what’s unfortunate is that the Republicans, and Ms. Blackburn, have for the first time politicized breast cancer.

BLACKBURN: That is incorrect.

WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: That is — no, it is not. And I’m a breast cancer…

BLACKBURN: No, it is incorrect.

WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: As you know, as a breast cancer survivor, Marsha…

BLACKBURN: That is incorrect. It’s in the bill, Debbie.

WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: Excuse me.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Let her finish her point.

BLACKBURN: I have a great respect — yes.

WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: As a breast cancer survivor, I came out against these — these recommendations. Every major cancer organization has come out against these recommendations. The task force language in that bill actually makes sure that prevention — preventive services like mammograms and colonoscopies and other cancer screenings would be free. The task force recommendations — the language in the bill…

(CROSSTALK)

STEPHANOPOULOS: Well, Debbie, let me — let me clarify this

(CROSSTALK)

WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: … that even more women would get access to…

(CROSSTALK)

STEPHANOPOULOS: Excuse me for a second. That — that is true. But let me clarify a little bit, because under the — the bill — and we have — we have the language, as well. It says that a group health plan and health insurance issuer offering the group (ph) shall provide coverage, but only under — if the Preventive Services Task Force rates it as an A or B.

BLACKBURN: That’s right.

STEPHANOPOULOS: And, actually, under the — under the task force, they said that these mammograms for women 40 to 50 is rated C. So they actually wouldn’t be covered. So you have a great expansion for a broad part of the population, but actually, these guidelines would be controlling for ages 40 or 50.

With all due respects to Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s inability to face reality, ABC News’ Chief Washington Correspondent and former Clinton administration Communications Director George Stephanopoulos and Rep. Marsha Blackburn are right: under this bill, when a government panel recommends that care be rationed, that care gets rationed.

And you’d better face up to that reality.

And if government rationing isn’t bad enough, there is also the fact that this takeover of the private health care system will also result in higher premiums, according to the CBO.  You will pay more and get less.

You’d better face up to that reality, too.

You’d also better face up to the reality that once this bill gets online, it will cost at least $2.5 trillion every ten years – and very likely ten times that figure if history is any guide.

Democrats argue that we should pass this bill to “get something done,” and then come back and fix it later.  But this bill is beyond dreadful.  The Dean of the Harvard School of Medicine gave it a flunking grade, and The Wall Street Journal called it “The Worst Bill Ever.”  The Democrats’ plan is beyond bad; it is evil.  We can surely start with something better than this.

This bill WILL lead to a government takeover via a public option (whether it is present in the bill or presented as a ‘trigger’ to happen later), and it will CERTAINLY lead to rationed care along with a shortage of doctors to provide medical services.

It is human nature to avoid dealing with unpleasant realities.  And the Democrats’ attempt to take over health care is the epitome of an unpleasant reality.  If it passes, it will be too late; and voting Democrats out of office in retaliation will be way too little, way too late.  The American people must either rise up and scream this monstrosity down, or it will very likely become the law of the land.

Mainstream Media Touts $848 Billion Senate Health Bill, Ignores Actual Cost Of At LEAST $2.5 Trillion

November 20, 2009

Democrats have done a good job – along with the loyal participation of a leftwing propaganda machine – of projecting their takeover of the health care system as “only” costing a “mere” $848 billion.

They think the American people are dumb enough to buy their fraud, and maybe they are.

But the actual cost of this program over ten years of its actual implementation will be at least $2.5 trillion.  And that is $107.5 trillion more than we’ve got.

Updated November 19, 2009
Senate Health Bill Price Tag, Rosy Deficit Estimate Assailed as ‘Fantasy’

by FOXNews.com

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid claims that his health care bill costs about $848 billion in the first 10 years, well under President Obama’s $900 billion target. That’s for 10 years of revenue-gathering, but only six years of service.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid claims that his health care bill costs about $848 billion in the first 10 years, well under President Obama’s $900 billion target.

That’s for 10 years of revenue-gathering, but only six years of service, according to the analysis by the Congressional Budget Office.

Adding in expenses beyond the 10-year mark drastically skews the overall cost, making the $848 billion a mere fraction of the long-term price tag of overhauling America’s health care system — and that’s if no changes are made to the legislation during that time.

The additional claim touted by Senate Democrats — that the bill will reduce the deficit by $130 billion over the first 10 years — is also coming under fire as “fantasy.”

Republicans have countered the CBO estimate with a figure of their own: $2.5 trillion, an estimate that comes out of the Senate Budget Committee minority’s analysis of Reid’s plan.

“This is a lousy bill that’s going to cost American taxpayers like mad for the rest of our lives,” Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, a fierce critic of the health care legislation, told Fox News on Thursday.

Part of the problem with the CBO estimate is that it covers a 10-year period from 2010-2019 — however, the health care reform plan is not fully implemented until 2014. That means the federal government is raking in billions in taxes and savings for the first four years without spending on the new program. The $2.5 trillion estimate is for the 10-year window starting in 2014, after implementation of the program begins.

Under the timetable in the CBO estimate, the government spends $9 billion in the first four years, but $838 billion in the last six when the overhaul goes into full force.

The revenue significantly ramps up in the latter half of the decade to keep pace with spending, but the nearly $100 billion in deficit savings in the first four years is not necessarily in the piggy bank either.

Democrats are holding up estimates that show the second decade of health care reform yields even more deficit reduction.

President Obama said in a statement Wednesday night that the unveiling of the is a “critical milestone” and cited one estimate showing the second 10 years would yield up to $650 billion in deficit reduction.

Sen. Kent Conrad, D-N.D., chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, cited the same estimate, telling Fox News that Reid’s bill is “going in the right direction” and yields significant savings.

“That to me is the most encouraging part of this,” he said.

Budget analysts say that the early revenue cannot be fenced off, much like Social Security money is spent despite a trust fund for that purpose. The funding gets absorbed into the general federal budget, presumably to go toward reducing the deficit on a yearly basis.

However, this creates the possibility that Congress could spend that money twice, by using the up-front savings as fun money for new projects and then having to pay the bill for health care reform down the road. Holtz-Eakin called this a worst-case scenario.

“The government’s incapable of segregating funds. You can’t put the money in a cigar box and bury it behind the Treasury Department,” said Michael Tanner, senior fellow with the libertarian Cato Institute.

Tanner pointed to two other “gimmicks” that make the price seem smaller than it is.

One deals with the so-called “doctor fix,” which would be an act of Congress to ensure Medicare doctors don’t face steeps cuts in federal reimbursements. This would cost at least $210 billion over 10 years, and it’s a “fix” that Democrats are trying to separate from the health care reform bill
.

That alone erases the $130 billion in deficit savings claimed by the CBO’s latest health care estimate.

Tanner also pointed to the CLASS Act, a long-term care program in the bill that takes in billions in revenue early on but does not pay out in any significant way until the next decade.

“If you use honest accounting … then this bill’s not paid for,” Tanner said. “It’s smoke-and-mirrors accounting.”

The Budget Committee document estimating the actual cost to be $2.5 trillion over years five through 14 of the program also showed $126 billion in deficit reduction in that period. It estimated even more down the road.

But Holtz-Eakin called that “fiction,” since it relies on more than $1 trillion in cuts to Medicare and Medicaid.

He said there’s no way the government can sustain and increase those cuts and expect the program to work.

The biggest problem of all is that the CBO – regardless of how well-intentioned or “objective” it is – have routinely underestimated the costs of government programs – especially health-related government programs – by a factor of ten.

The Senate Democrat health bill includes the public option.  It guarantees a government takeover of healthcare.

We are talking about clear matters of life and death.  We are talking about 1/6th of the U.S. economy.  And Democrats are playing games of smoke and mirrors.  What they are doing is beyond unconscionable.

$1 trillion in cuts to Medicare?  Bye-bye, old people.  In the words of Obama adviser Robert Reich, “We’re going to let you die.”

Liberal Newsweek has it’s “Case for Killing Granny.”  Newsbusters points out:

For good measure the magazine also promises readers to explain “Why We Should Insure Illegals” and how “Health Reform Could Combat Crime” in related articles linked on the front page. More illegal immigration, fewer criminals and old people. What a deal!

Please don’t be so naive and so stupid as to believe that these people aren’t serious.  And I mean deadly serious.

Make no mistake: Democrats are voting for the national economic suicide of the United States, and for the deaths by medical-resource rationing of millions of Americans who otherwise would have lived.


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