Wednesday, January 6, 2010

What is the health care reform really about?

Health insurance profit margins typically run about 6 percent, give or take a point or two. That's anemic compared with other forms of insurance and a broad array of industries, even some beleaguered ones.
Profits barely exceeded 2 percent of revenues in the latest annual measure. This partly explains why the credit ratings of some of the largest insurers were downgraded to negative from stable heading into this year, as investors were warned of a stagnant if not shrinking market for private plans.
Insurers are an expedient target for leaders who want a government-run plan in the marketplace. Such a public option would force private insurers to trim profits and restrain premiums to compete, the argument goes. This would "keep insurance companies honest," says President Barack Obama.
The debate is loaded with intimations that insurers are less than straight, when they are not flatly accused of malfeasance.
They may not have helped their case by commissioning a report that looked primarily at the elements of health care legislation that might drive consumer costs up while ignoring elements aimed at bringing costs down. Few in the debate seem interested in a true balance sheet.
But in pillorying insurers over profits, the critics are on shaky ground. A look at some claims, and the numbers:
_"I'm very pleased that (Democratic leaders) will be talking, too, about the immoral profits being made by the insurance industry and how those profits have increased in the Bush years." House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., who also welcomed the attention being drawn to insurers'"obscene profits."
_"Keeping the status quo may be what the insurance industry wants their premiums have more than doubled in the last decade and their profits have skyrocketed." Maryland Rep. Chris Van Hollen, member of the Democratic leadership.
_"Health insurance companies are willing to let the bodies pile up as long as their profits are safe." A ad.
Health insurers posted a 2.2 percent profit margin last year, placing them 35th on the Fortune 500 list of top industries. As is typical, other health sectors did much better - drugs and medical products and services were both in the top 10.
The railroads brought in a 12.6 percent profit margin. Leading the list: network and other communications equipment, at 20.4 percent.
HealthSpring, the best performer in the health insurance industry, posted 5.4 percent. That's a less profitable margin than was achieved by the makers of Tupperware, Clorox bleach and Molson and Coors beers.
The star among the health insurance companies did, however, nose out Jack in the Box restaurants, which only achieved a 4 percent margin.
UnitedHealth Group, reporting third quarter results last week, saw fortunes improve. It managed a 5 percent profit margin on an 8 percent growth in revenue.
Van Hollen is right that premiums have more than doubled in a decade, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation study that found a 131 percent increase.
But were the Bush years golden ones for health insurers?
Not judging by profit margins, profit growth or returns to shareholders. The industry's overall profits grew only 8.8 percent from 2003 to 2008, and its margins year to year, from 2005 forward, never cracked 8 percent.
The latest annual profit margins of a selection of products, services and industries: Tupperware Brands, 7.5 percent; Yahoo, 5.9 percent; Hershey, 6.1 percent; Clorox, 8.7 percent; Molson Coors Brewing, 8.1 percent; construction and farm machinery, 5 percent; Yum Brands (think KFC, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell), 8.5 percent.                                                                                                                                                 Now for the big question. Do you really think that our government and it's record of wasting our money, do a better job at under 6% waste? And with only a 6% profit margine it's obvious insurance companies are the real problem. So what is this Health Care Reform really about? It isn't about the profit margines of the insurance companies or about the government doing a better job at a lower profit margine then the insurance companies? We know that isn't what this is about either. It couldn't possably be about more government takeovers and the power that comes with it? It isn't about our government tawking over our lives and our health care is it? Could it be about money? The unions have a lot to gain from a one payer system and the Democrats do what the unions tell them to do no matter what harm it causes we the people and the country. This ain't about the 6% profit margines because everyone wishes the government would run that efficent. If the Democrats pass this health care bill then it isn't going to look good for them in the next couple of decades. And if you need proof of government waste and irresponsable managment just look at when Medicare becomes bankrupt. Yeh that happens in 2016. And if you want to know who will get stuck with the bill on all this spending just look at our youth. We aren't leaving them the SSI they payed into,Medicare they payed for and a national debt like none other. But they voted for Obama and the Democrats that are doing it to them. But at least they are preparing our future with a great education like none other the world over. LOL.  Now lets hear the liberals say that the Republicans and I are getting paid by the inserance companies. John has already shown us how much the Democrats get from insurance and big pharma. Don't worry though because right when we cover the costs of theis health care reform the unions like SEIU will tell us that their huge pessions aren't funded and we the people and the future generations will be paying for that one too. Spread the wealth,spread the wealth, while the unions are getting buttered up for a grand future. We the people need to fight back and fight back hard or this will cost us our future. And unless you want to work till your dead then you better stop this "fundamental change"  and give the government what they diserve.                 


  1. I love how that idiot Bruce FAILk claims that health insurance is such a scam, that they will drop your or raise your rates if you get a cold or a runny nose, and yet HE has health insurance. What a dumbass. Just shows what a bunch of liars and hypocrites these lieberals are. They are so full of shit it just amazes me when they try to claim something is true when it clearly isn't.

    Like, remember when Bruce FAILk wanted to copy the Detroit Police Department as a model for our health care system?

    Or when he claims that the Hypocratic Congress giving huge money to trial lawyers, Big Pharma, and Big Insurance was the fault of Republicans?!!? WTF!!?!?! These Hypocrats are getting exactly what they want. Giving big money to their cronies in exchange for kick-backs and votes and most importantly to them, control and power. Republicans have no control over what is in this bill; never have and never will.

  2. Conservatives aren't about power and control. If they were they would want to do what the Democrats are doing not trying to take control from the government and giving to the people. Conservatives are for the people while the liberals and Democrats are for the government and the unions.

  3. I work for an insurance company and the main goal, every day, is to keep Medical costs down. Unfortunately much of what is done to keep costs low actually increases them. There is a chart somewhere on the net that shows that as our out of pocket expenses go down, the cost of health care goes up. As with anything else, if somebody else is paying the bill then you don't much care what you're spending.

    Bottom line is that the premiums have to cover the medical and administrative costs. The higher the medical costs, the higher the premiums. Period. If the preimiums stay stagnant as the medical costs go up, then the insurance companies go bankrupt and there's not a snowball's chance in hell that they'd get a government bailout.

    Then again, the Dems never let the facts get in the way of a good story.

  4. Right on Spinsterpov; as I like to say, it ain't the insurance companies charging $50 for two aspirin in the hospital.

    I'm going to see if I can find the video where Obummer was doing one of his town hall meetings and a health insurance employee stood up and asked why Obummer and the Hypocrats were maligning insurance companies, and Obummer had to agree that insurance companies weren't the problem.

    Unfortunately Obummer is just like every other Hypocrat, talking out of both sides of their mouths.

  5. Mayo Clinic to STOP taking Medicade Patients because of Reimbursements being Late and Low! Nobama used Mayo Clinic as Example of how GOOD Medical Treatment should be! It does APPEAR Mayo Clinic DOES NOT have Much CONFIDENCE in Government Run Program NOW. Bruce what happens if Nobama Care DOES take effect and Many Hospitals and Doctors FEEL the SAME as Mayo CLININC. Does that NOT mean Waiting for TREATMENT and Effect Patient Care?

    One other MATTER C Span Asked to Broadcast Nobama Care and dont believe they got a ANSWER yet. Nobama on Record saying C SPAN would broadcast all Congressional Activites to SHOW his belief in Government TRANSPARENTSY,Bruce hows that WORKING. Not well cause believe there will be CLOSED door MEETINGS,wonder HOW many Republicans will be there,ANSWER ZERO!

    Nobama Care about POWER/CONTROL over Citizens,PERIOD!

  6. Eventually it will be mandated that doctors have to accpet the patients on the government plan which means they'll go brok and end up in a total government subsidy which will be (gasp) a single payor plan.

  7. I'd like these dip-shit Hypocrat lieberals to name one thing that the government has made less expensive. I'm not talking about something they have only mandated that they will reimburse you less for, I'm talking about something that they have made cost less. One thing, that's all I ask.

  8. What ever happened to Government Run State Health Care in Massachusetts,Tennesse or Hawaii? I think they ALL went BELLY up! Nobama Care lon a BIGGER Scale will do the SAME thing BUT who will BAIL COUNTRY out?

    John Please dont wait,cause that TRAIN aint COMING!

  9. LOL, thanks Al! Speaking of trains, that's one thing that the government has made less ... oh ... no, wait .... darn it! LOL


Please keep it clean and nice. Thank you for taking the time to post you thought. It means a lot to me that you do this.