Trump’s Healthcare Tweet Sets Up New Lawsuits Against His Actions.

When it comes to lawsuits Trump is his own worse enemy. His numerous bigoted statements against Muslims undermined his travel bans by suggesting their purpose was an impermissible one of religious discrimination. Now on the heels of the stinging defeat of Trumpcare he has taken to Twitter once again with a Tweet that will set up arguments against his future executive actions related to Obamacare.


The Tweet is significant because it suggests that Trump believes the failure of Obamacare is in his best interests as through its failure he can achieve the policies he prefers. Obviously, as President, Trump is in a position to interpret and apply Obamacare, or through other actions or inactions, precipitate its demise. He could do this by implementing regulations interpreting provisions of Obamacare in a damaging way, or through other executive agency actions undermining the program.


This will likely result in lawsuits claiming what the Trump Administration did was “arbitrary and capricious,” one of the legal standards for reversing such executive agency actions. Trump’s Tweet above, and similar statements he has made, will undoubtedly be introduced as evidence of his capricious intent.


Trump is very good at making the jobs of his lawyers harder, and he never learns.



Jeffry Gilbert Added Mar 26, 2017 - 1:35pm
Have you sought treatment for your Trump Acceptance Resistance Disorder (TARD) ? 
Bill H. Added Mar 26, 2017 - 2:21pm
Trump will start with allowing his insurance company buddies to start raising rates along with cutting back on services and benefits. This will be his retaliation.
wsucram15 Added Mar 26, 2017 - 6:00pm
He really is his own worst enemy.
John Minehan Added Mar 26, 2017 - 8:09pm
The ACA is VERY poorly designed.  (How do you make high deductible insurance a key part of your plan, without allowing for, even requiring, HSAs to let people to put away pre-tax $$ to meet those deductibles?  How do you promise that people will be able to keep their doctors, when your new system necessarily meant many people would be dropped from group plans into the Exchanges and many individually insured would not have qualified Plans?)
AHCA actually might have been worse.
In ACA, I like the fact that it is not employer-based, where the Gig Economy means that more and more (probably most) people will not be employees.
In AHCA, I like the refundable tax credits.
Why not build something from those elements?
Thomas Sutrina Added Mar 26, 2017 - 11:12pm
Keith, you must be reading a much earlier string of tweets. He still supports AHCA of Ryan. That means he does not want the failure of ACA. Now I think that all phase 1 of the AHCA is  doing is to transfer the millstone of ACA from the Democratic necks to the Republican necks. The Democrats will have a big reason to filibuster phase 3 which is reported to contain the free market changes.
As a Conservative I oppose the passage of phase 1, but I do support doing all three phase in one bill and to use the millstone of ACA.  Trump won states that have Democratic Senators up for election in 2018. We know that the millstone of ACA has resulted in the loss of the house in 2010, the senate in 2014 and the presidency in 2016. And the loss of countless state legislatures. Over 900 legislative seat flipped to the GOP. Now that is quite some mill stone.
You are looking at the law suite from one point of view. This has to be done from a the district courts. The Supreme court will be at a minimum neutral. And Trump has hundreds of court seats to fill. Not filibuster to stop him, thank Senator Reed for the nuclear option. So the advantage that the liberals have due to Obama filling seats with the nuclear option will be used to continue filling seats with Trump judges.
Next are the scandals that have occurred in the Obama administration.  I recall about 17 of them, and the Trump attorney general can use the finances of the Federal government to bring them to trial. This includes Hillary Clinton, both attorney generals, IRS, and EPA.  Benghazi could be investigated which would put Obama's legacy next to Nixon, maybe worse the Nixon.  Conservative theory is that Obama went to bed while the 4 Americans were fighting for their lives.  Not that would not sit well with the American public if an investigation could put Benghazi in the light of day.
Louis E Weeks Added Mar 27, 2017 - 7:29am
Obamacare has been failing from the day it started, it was Obama who used politically and personally motivated Administrative actions to try and prop it up and keep it alive but anyone with a brain knows it can't continue as-is.  We have already seen massive rate increases bigger than ever before before Trump won the election.
Yes I know the dishonest try to claim insurance rates when down but that is including the cost offsets offered from subsidies, take away the subsidies and all rate costs have drastically increased.
So much for the Obama promise that if passed, Obamacare would give average American families a $2,500 RATE REDUCTION are you not tired of all the lies connected to Obamacare yet?
Trump said early in his campaign that he should just let Obamacare fail and let the Democrats take credit for all the mess they created but instead he was willing to fix things so they can be sustained.  Yes there will still be some pain, just not as much.
At this point I agree with Trump, let the thing fail and say every day how he tried to fix it and they would not let him.
Dino Manalis Added Mar 27, 2017 - 9:35am
Trump should keep his legislation simple, health care is complex and repealing and replacing ObamaCare is controversial.  Instead of blaming others, Trump should only blame himself for lack of experience.  The focus ought to be on actions to lower expenses, like import foreign prescription drugs; cap medical malpractice compensation; and streamline insurance bureaucracy and paperwork.
Keith Added Mar 27, 2017 - 10:01am
I appreciate the thoughtful comments.
The American Healthcare Act (AHCA) (aka “Trumpcare”) was doomed from the beginning because it did not address one of the fundamental dilemmas of healthcare financing. The CBO report found the bill would add 24 million uninsured within ten years. Most of that would occur quickly, with 21 million of those additional uninsured happening in just three years, by 2020.
The President is clueless. In a rare moment of both humility and candor he admitted as much declaring “nobody knew that health care could be so complicated.” For the record, he’s wrong. I knew it. If he’d called me I’d have told him. I never got the call. 
Trumpcare would have roughly doubled the number of uninsured in the country. This condemns the viability of the AHCA. It all has to do with that “healthcare is complicated” thing that is only now dawning on our President.
This complexity should not surprise anyone. Americans spend well over $3 trillion a year on healthcare, roughly 18% of our GDP. This means nearly one in five dollars spent on anything in this country is spent on healthcare. The United States spends $10,000 per person per year on healthcare. Thus, the average annual healthcare bill for a family of four is $40,000. Staggering figures, and someone must pay for it. For every person paying less than their $10,000 somebody else has to pay more. This is math; numbers must balance.
America is unique in this regard. No other nation spends close to this, not even other advanced nations. America’s share of GDP and per person spending on healthcare is roughly double similar numbers for the industrialized nations of Western Europe and Canada. Yet that additional spending does not buy us longer life expectancy, or lower infant mortality, or much else in the way of outcomes to justify any claim to having the best healthcare system in the world. But I digress, back to Trumpcare, Obamacare and the fundamental dilemma of healthcare insurance.
One of the most popular aspects of Obamacare was its rule that insurers could not deny coverage to people with preexisting conditions. Prior to Obamacare, many people with chronic illnesses, or even at high risk for them, simply could not get health insurance. So Obamacare required that insurers cover them like anyone else. This aspect of Obamacare is so popular that neither Trump, nor Republicans in general, want to abandon it. An incredible 92% of Americans support the Obamacare requirement that insurers must cover those with preexisting conditions. This may be a “divided nation” on many things, but not on that. Changing that aspect of Obamacare would be political suicide.
This leads to the most unpopular part of Obamacare, the part Republicans sued against, campaigned against, and swept the 2016 elections with. That part is the “individual mandate” requiring that everyone purchase health insurance or pay a tax penalty. Why did Obama and Democrats insist on having this unpopular provision that generated so much backlash? It’s simple. Without the individual mandate, it was not possible to require that insurers cover preexisting conditions.
Health insurance companies have to make money. If they don’t they go out of business and provide no health insurance to anyone. People with preexisting conditions are often incredibly expensive to cover (often by many multiples above that $10,000 per person average). That is why so many were not covered before Obamacare. If you require by law that insurers cover them, there are two ways to pay for this:

Allow insurance companies to increase premiums on those paying for health insurance, or
Increase the number of people who are paying for health insurance to increase the base of those insured and spread the additional costs to a higher number of insured people.

Option 1 creates an insurance death spiral. As premiums increase, people quit insurance creating higher premiums for those remaining, prompting more to quit insurance . . . and so on. Further, the incentive is to not buy insurance until one is already sick. Imagine if you were permitted to wait to purchase fire insurance until your home is on fire. I think you could see how such a system could not work.
So Obamacare chose Option 2 and increased the base by mandating that people purchase insurance or pay a tax penalty. The individual mandate was not because Obama is a freedom-hating socialist, bent on destroying individual liberty in America, but because that was the only way to make the system work, in particular a system requiring that insurers cover preexisting conditions. At one point, the late 1980s, this idea of an indiv
Keith Added Mar 27, 2017 - 10:05am
[picking up where it cut off]
At one point, the late 1980s, this idea of an individual mandate enforced by a tax penalty was a conservative idea. The conservative Heritage Foundation strongly supported the concept (see p. 51 here). Not a word of its supposed unconstitutionality was to be heard.
So with 24 million less insured people, how would Trumpcare have addressed the dilemma of paying for coverage of preexisting conditions? Quite simply, it did not. Because it is too popular to repeal, Trumpcare kept the Obamacare requirement that insurers cover preexisting conditions, but it eliminated the individual mandate that served as its financial foundation. With 24 million fewer Americans insured, the costs of insuring those with preexisting conditions would have fallen on a much smaller base of insured people, dramatically raising their premiums. With premiums escalating, fewer people will purchase insurance . . . and so on. The death spiral referred to above is on.
As for those 24 million without insurance, will they not get healthcare? Of course they will, we won’t just let them die. They will flock to already overcrowded emergency rooms to receive primary care in the most expensive manner possible. These are expenses they will not bear, lacking financial resources to do so, shifting more costs to the ever draining pool of insured people. In essence, the people who are insured under Obamacare now, and paying at least a part of their costs for healthcare, would have become uninsured and payed none.
This is a small piece of the complex interrelationships of our massive (one-fifth of the economy) healthcare industry. You can’t pull out just one thread of that tapestry without risking unraveling the whole picture. Trumpcare was a massive legislative dodging of one of the most perplexing dilemmas in healthcare financing. However, its consequences cannot be dodged.
Thus, Trumpcare as written was doomed. Any substitute must address this dilemma, one way or another.
Bill Kamps Added Mar 27, 2017 - 11:21am
Every politician who speaks on health care is at least exaggerating, if not lying.  No one can promise better service, and lower prices for EVERYONE.  It is an impossibility.  It is like promising changes in the tax code, where taxes go down for everyone, but the process is revenue neutral.  That is impossible.  For every change there are winners and loses.  Sometimes lots of losers.  My private insurance premium doubled under ACA.
You cant promise very high quality service, fast service, and low prices.  You can promise any two of the three, but not all three.  Unfortunately the voters are not being forced to choose, they are being promised all three because politicians dont want to tell us bad news.
You cant exempt the healthy from the system, and expect it to work.  The young cant afford insurance, or they choose not to get it.  They see it is expensive, the probability is low they will need it, and they would rather spend their money elsewhere.  They know they can always  go to the emergency  room.  This causes problems when you try to insure people with pre-existing conditions.  You get too many sick people in the system, and not enough healthy ones.
Trump said the problem is simple.  Now after he failed to change the law, he said he is "moving on" to tax reform.  He now wants the system to fail, such that voters force a return to his proposal.  This is a very risky and cynical view, since ACA may not fail, it may just limp along costing ever more money, as many government programs do.  Governing is hard work, and it Trump doesnt want to invest the time and effort to get laws changed, he isnt going to get much done, and he will lose what support he has from the voters.
Thomas Sutrina Added Mar 27, 2017 - 11:21am
The similarities between ACA and AHCA are obvious.  Both were written in secret and did not go through "regular order", did not have fact finding open forums around the country by the congressional committees, and limited the legislators that participated in the drafting.  As Prof. Gruber said in 2013 videos, "Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage and, basically, call it the stupidity of American voter or whatever. But basically that was really critical to getting the thing to pass."  Since we have lived with ACA since 2013 people understand it through their pocket book.  This part of what Gruber said in 2012 in another video does not apply, "It's a very clever, you know, basic exploitation of the lack of economic understanding of the American voter."  Only 17% of voters wanted AHCA and that is also the portion of people that like ACA.  They receive government handouts.  In that same pole 56% of the voters did not want AHCA this is about the average response of voters to ACA.  Again another indication the similarity between ACA and AHCA.
The House of representatives passed a repeal bill of ACA about 65 time during the Obama administration.  The last months before the election.  The opponents said then take this bill and put it up for a vote.   The representative have used these votes for years as proof to voters that they will keep their campaign promises to repeal root and branch of ACA.   They also said they need congress and the White House before they can accomplish repeal.  So now they are faced with living up to their promise.   They are trying to tell voters that AHCA is that repeal but 56% of the voters disagree.  They and the Administration are made at the other congressmen that told the voters what was in the bill.  Clearly they never planned to keep their word.  
The mandate from the people is as great as the mandate Ronald Reagan received first in 1980 by taking 42 states in his first election.  And reaffirmed it in 1984 by taking 49 states.   Today since the passage of ACA the Democrats have lost the House of Representatives in 2010, the Senate in 2014, and the White House in 2016.  And at the state level flipped more states to the GOP then any time in history of the country since the Civil War.  More governors and State legislature have at least one house controlled by the GOP and many both houses.  Together over 900 seats have flipped.
Mike Haluska Added Mar 27, 2017 - 11:29am
News Flash!  The Republican Health Care Plan DIDN'T PASS.  More importantly, NOTHING WAS DONE TO OBAMACARE!  According to the Federal Government, 17 million Americans are WITHOUT HEALTH INSURANCE UNDER OBAMACARE!!!  Another 20 million only have Health Insurance because OBAMACARE (YOUR TAXES) PAYS FOR IT!
So when Obamacare collapses before the 2018 election and people are screaming about ridiculous premiums - there is only ONE OWNER of Obamacare - the DEMOCRATS!  The 2018 election will be a bloodbath for the Democratic Party as the "Progressives" lead them to the "Ash Heap of History".  
Mike Haluska Added Mar 27, 2017 - 11:31am
Tip to the Republicans - get Paul Ryan's ass the hell OUT of anything to do with health care, trade, energy.  Get Dr. Carson involved in preparing the Republican Health Care Plan along with Rand Paul and keep the RINO's on the sidelines.
Keith Added Mar 27, 2017 - 11:33am
Well Mike, that's one possibility, but with strong majority's in both houses of Congress and the Presidency, the Republicans will be blamed for whatever supposed plight American healthcare is in 2018.  Republicans will have neither eliminated Obamacare or replaced it with anything credible of their own. 
The Republican Healthcare plan was seven years in the not making.  Trump promised he would fix it on Day 1.  Now he doesn't even have a clue as to what to do.
Mike Haluska Added Mar 27, 2017 - 11:34am
Bill H - you're delusional if you think:
"Trump will start with allowing his insurance company buddies to start raising rates along with cutting back on services and benefits. This will be his retaliation."
Trump won't touch Obamacare with a 10 foot pole - why should he when it's about to become the worst government debacle in history?  Nope - this one is taking down the people that rammed it through without reading it or allowing the American people to read it - the DEMOCRATS!!! 
Keith Added Mar 27, 2017 - 11:36am
Yes, get the guy who thinks the pyramids were built by Joseph to store grain.  That's the ticket.  Having figured out the pyramids, healthcare will be a piece of cake for him.
Bill H. Added Mar 27, 2017 - 11:43am
Mike - Watch how quickly Trump and his cronies work to progress a failure of Obamacare. The insurance industry is just itching to get their hands back on controlling the process and reaping more profits, sadly at the expense of many dedicated Trump supporters. And Trump simply will not accept a failure without retaliation.
We'll see how "delusional" I am.
Thomas Sutrina Added Mar 27, 2017 - 11:51am
Keith one thing that AHCA has done is to tell the voters that Democratic votes in the Senate are needed to repeal and replace ACA.  The opponents of AHCA which includes Rand Paul have clearly convinced 56% of the population that RINOCARE did not repeal ACA and did not need democratic votes.
So Keith the Democrats still have the millstone of ACA around their neck as it collapses.  Now the GOP has to present a bill to repeal ACA and through proper "regular order" and fact finding public forums and rallies by the president inform the people.  Place the responsibility of its passage on the Democrats.  
Keith Added Mar 27, 2017 - 12:12pm
Thomas, voters can do the math and see that the Republicans control both houses of Congress.  They failed because they couldn't cobble a plan that even enough Republicans would support. 
Look at my statistic above where 92% of Americans support keeping the requirement that insurance companies must cover those with preexisting conditions.  That mandate, overwhelmingly supported by the American people, drives all the other options.  It means that straight repeal of Obamacare is not politically viable. 
Americans opposed Trumpcare because they believed they could lose their health insurance.  It's as simple as that. 
Republicans had seven years to plan a viable healthcare alternative, and they came up empty.
Thomas Sutrina Added Mar 27, 2017 - 12:40pm
Keith that same math voters can see the Republicans do not have 60 votes in the Senate.  They just cross 50%.  So to pass health care reform by the Senate rules require 60 votes.  That means they need 9 democratic votes, math.
Yes the GOP failed to pass RINOCARE.  Which says that the GOP leadership needs democrat votes to pass progressive, growing government, bills.  This is what Boehner did for the years he was speaker of the House.  That is why the GOP leaders prevent using the power of the purse favored by the conservatives.  
Conservative voters are fully aware of the reality of where the GOP leadership sits and so are the independents and democrats.  It is obvious and really not a surprise to conservatives that no plan existed to repeal ACA since Boehner authored bills, those omnibus spending bills, that hid the pork of both parties being purchased.  Why would he reduce the money flowing into his slush fund?
Thomas Sutrina Added Mar 27, 2017 - 12:46pm
Keith 56% of voters oppose ACA and AHAC because, "they believed they could lose their health insurance. (actually health care itself just as Canadians and other citizens of countries with national health care.  All those system have on paper universal  insured health care but in practices rationing occurs.) It's as simple as that."
Keith Added Mar 27, 2017 - 12:52pm
"Keith that same math voters can see the Republicans do not have 60 votes in the Senate."
Well Thomas, the bill did not fail in the Senate, it failed in the House.  Further, the bill was written for the reconciliation process so that it could be filibuster proof
Your argument ignores the most critical fact.  Trump promised he would do this.  Videos of those promises to repeal and replace "immediately" and on the "first day" are all over.  He said it would be easy.  Americans will remember those promises and if he couldn't deliver he shouldn't have made them.
Finally, Republicans found the time to vote over 60 times to repeal Obamacare before the election.  Now that they have to actually make policy, and "be real" they can't do it.  They have cold feet.  You think people aren't going to remember that?  You think they will see Republicans not doing in 2017 what they did over 60 times from 2010-2016  and blame that on the Democrats? 
You seem to have a low opinion of Americans.
Bill Kamps Added Mar 27, 2017 - 1:31pm
The big take away from last week is that Trump does not know how to get a bill passed on Congress.  He didnt bother to count votes, or structure policy such that he got a majority to support the bill in Congress.  The bill was designed such that is cut across party, and sub-party lines.  Therefore a winning coalition was impossible. 
Voters notice how little effort was expended to get this passed.  Obama spent years putting ACA in place, and Trump spent a few weeks, and after the  defeat said it was time to move on.  He thinks failure of the ACA will force a revision in policy.  That is  how things works in the private sector, in the public sector failure just means we will  throw good money after bad, and put more band aides on an already flawed plan.  It takes too much effort to revise policy.
As for the details of the plan, as long as people want affordable, high quality, on demand health care, they will be disappointed.  All three a not possible.  Most universal plans ration access, since the priorities are normally affordable and high quality.
John Minehan Added Mar 27, 2017 - 3:56pm
"Obama spent years putting ACA in place, and Trump spent a few weeks, and after the  defeat said it was time to move on."
Actually, Obama himself put little effort into PPACA. 
However, there were competing Think Tanks during the campaign who had plans that they dusted off and implemented with the support of House Democrats. 
That they were bad plans is demonstrated by political damage the ACA has visited upon the Dems since 2009.
The GOP has no shortage of workable ideas, all of which would improve the situation with Health Care as opposed to the Status Quo.
The problem is that all of these plans would cause intense short term disruption and the GOP has essentially two factions: one (which killed the AHCA bill) relishes the prospect of such disruption for ideological reasons; and a second (which drafted the AHCA bill that had no natural vase of support) dreads the impact of the disruption for political reasons.
I laud the faction that killed the AHCA for killing a bill that would have made things worse.  However, I dread their inclination to put ideology before any other consideration.  You can say the Dems did exactly that in passing the ACA, but they also paid a dire electoral cost for that since 2009.
What now?
In my opinion, the GOP has to pick off some rational Dems (probably either people who have worked in Health Care or people from states Trump carried "bigly') who can see that Market Based Reforms and de-regulation is the only feasible way forward.  Since the PPACA contained such elements to some degree (albeit not always workably) this is not impossible. 
The brilliant lawyer, Richard Epstein, has correctly pointed out that the development of a true consumer market, with price points, is essential for reform and that technology abets that goal.  However, you don't get there without a lot of legislative action, particularly by creating an interim structure, probably resembling a "Bismarck System for the Gig Economy," probably built around non-employment-based groups.
The best health care system in the world is generally thought to be France, a Bismarck system.  The best (and most sustainable) emerging syatem is usually seen as being that of India, which is essentially non-insurance based.  Thus it may be said the road to India is through France.     
Keith Added Mar 27, 2017 - 4:30pm
For all practical purposes, France (while they deny it) has a universal health care single payer system similar to Canada's or Great Britain's.  Everyone pays compulsory health insurance  which goes to one of three non-profit insurance companies that negotiate with the government for funding healthcare in France.  Patients generally pay a 20-30% copay for physician services. 
Mike Haluska Added Mar 27, 2017 - 4:43pm
Bill H - your claim:
"Watch how quickly Trump and his cronies work to progress a failure of Obamacare."
is fallacious.  The FASTEST way for Obamacare to continue its collapse is to just step aside and don't touch it.  That way the Republicans and Trump can't be pinned with its demise.  Not ONE Republican voted for it, it didn't do what was promised and it is a financial house of cards - as I predicted 7 years ago.  You watch - when premiums jump again, insurers opt out, deductibles skyrocket and the "Cadillac Tax" kicks in (the one where even people who are INSURED BY THEIR EMPLOYERS have to pay $4,000 - $9,000 for the "privilege" of employer provided health insurance . . . the SH&T will really hit the fan - and the fan is pointed right at the DEMOCRATIC PARTY!!!
Mark my words - when we're 10 months away from the 2018 election you will see dozens of moderate Democrats (working people Democrats like my Dad used to vote for) jumping ship and switching to the Republican Party.  And those 25 Democratic held Senate seats in Red States - adios to those as well! 
The traditional working family Democrats will also finally abandon the "Progressive" wing of the party and defect as well.  Trump will be offering real high paying jobs and the "progressives" will try and sell bankrupt Obamacare to people who just got screwed by it - good luck with that campaign strategy!!!
Mike Haluska Added Mar 27, 2017 - 4:49pm
Bill K - your comment:
"The big take away from last week is that Trump does not know how to get a bill passed on Congress."
underestimates Trump.  Trump got what he needed - he identified the RINO's in the Republican Party and got them to show their hand before the hand was actually played.   
It still never ceases to amaze me how liberals and the mainstream media continue to underestimate Trump, despite all of the predictions, polls, fake news, "scandals", etc. . . . you guys just never learn!
Thomas Sutrina Added Mar 27, 2017 - 5:44pm
Keith I actually agree that the Republican leadership and those that keep them in power are bozos.  Speaker John Boehner and Ryan are cut from the same cloth.  And I said the Senate need 60 vote and have 51 or so votes.  The bill did fail in the House but was written to pass the senate with 51 votes.  
Well that is what was said which was a lie.  The VP  determines what is needed to meet the requirement for reconciliation.  All of Obama Care effect the budges so all of it could be changed.  That is what the parliamentarian said, an employee.  
But Speaker Paul Ryan wanted to pass a bill that served the interest of the insurance companies that funds both Republicans and Democrats.  They do not care about party.  They care about getting their interest served.  The Ryan bill would have resulted in the failure of small insurance companies that do not put enough money in the coffers of the parties.  Then the big boys would control the market and will be too big to fail.  The citizens would be screwed.  Keith including democrats, republicans, and everyone else.  Have to purchase insurance and pay the insurance company if you let it laps.  Now that is power. 
Thomas Sutrina Added Mar 27, 2017 - 5:58pm
Keith the only people in congress fighting for you are the Conservatives.   That is why the Rino GOP candidates could not even get a start in the primary.  
Keith the Democrats chose to face Trump instead of Cruz.  They though the beginner would not get the conservative vote and would make mistakes.  Why do you think the big business media industry including Fox provided Trump an order of magnitude more free TV time?   Trump is not that good.   And the praise disappeared the second he became the GOP candidate.  Now isn't that strange to go from doing know wrong to doing nothing right?   
As you point out Trump is living up to being a beginner.   His Democratic foundation is poking through.  He is a populist that lacks what Obama and Cruz have, a philosophy to base their decisions on.  I disagree with Obama but he was steadfast.  Reagan was just a steadfast.   That is why Paul Ryan could even put together a bill that did not meet his campaign promises.  Because those promises were not part of a philosophy.
Trump's philosophy is to win.  
Patrick Writes Added Mar 27, 2017 - 8:32pm
Interesting post, great discussion.
I think they need to lock Rand Paul in a room until he brings out a draft that they can argue over. He's the only guy who seems to know ANYTHING about health care or this topic. (Which makes sense because he's a trained physician who practiced for a handful of years.)
These other guys just keep going on with more noise ('we have to get rid of the lines around the states' - Trump). 
A heart surgery costs what it costs. An MRI machine costs what it costs.
Insurance is affordable when people are pooled into groups. Not in Individual policies or health savings accounts (that will help you if you get cancer..., probably would barely cover a birth or two).
Patrick Writes Added Mar 27, 2017 - 8:37pm
Patrick Writes Added Mar 27, 2017 - 8:39pm
It sounds like they just need a little help to form, government could make that easier somehow. 
John Minehan Added Mar 28, 2017 - 8:25am
"For all practical purposes, France (while they deny it) has a universal health care single payer system similar to Canada's or Great Britain's."
Well . . . no.
What the French ( and the FRG, Japan, Switzerland, Belgium and others) have is a Bismarck System, a system of mandatory, near-universal, government-regulated private health insurance with private, for-profit providers.  This is in contrast to Canadian Medicare (government-provided socialized insurance) or British NHS (socialized government-employed or owned providers).
Bismarck Systems tend to get better clinical results at lower costs than either our system or systems or Canadian Medicare or British NHS.
It never really developed here, even after health insurance as an employee fringe benefit became established during and after WWII, probably because of the prevalence of self-employment and employment in small businesses.
The Gig Economy exacerbates this trend.  In my opinion, one of the few merits of PPACA is that it is not employer-based in a time when W-2 Employment is diminishing vice various types of contractor relationships.
However, in the short term the emergence of some kind of non-employer-based group would be a better approach than either the PPACA or the AHCA.    
Keith Added Mar 28, 2017 - 8:35am
Quote [Thomas]:  "Why do you think the big business media industry including Fox provided Trump an order of magnitude more free TV time?"
Simple.  Because he kept saying completely batfecalmaterial crazy stuff that made for exciting news.  They wanted the cameras on him always to catch the next Trump train wreck because train wrecks make for good TV in a highly competitive industry scrambling for viewers in 24/7 news cycle. 
It wasn't because the Democrats "selected" him.  By and large it was Republicans who voted to make him their nominee, just like every other primary process.  His message, like most demagogues, was to say bad things about people his supporters didn't like, this case the 3Ms (Muslims, Mexicans and Media).  His supporters lapped that up, bringing the alt-right out of the fringe corners of the internet and accelerating the mainstreaming of racism in the Republican Party.
His core base is a personality cult that loved that message, and continues to. 
John Minehan Added Mar 28, 2017 - 9:04am
"One thing I've learned about the press is that they're always hungry for a good story, and the more sensational the better...The point is that if you are a little different, a little outrageous, or if you do things that are bold or controversial, the press is going to write about you."   Donald J. Trump
Mike Haluska Added Mar 28, 2017 - 10:18am
Patrick - quoting anything except the baseball standings from the NY Times is meaningless.  The NY Times has absolutely NO credibility any longer and they outright admit they have no objectivity when it comes to politics and Trump specifically.
Keith Added Mar 28, 2017 - 10:25am
Mike, can you quote for me where the NYTs outright admits "they have no objectivity when it comes to politics and Trump specifically"?
Mike Haluska Added Mar 28, 2017 - 10:39am
Keith - didn't you follow the NY Times election coverage?  And it's not just the NY Times - it is the entire mainstream media!  They have essentially declared war on the Trump administration with the purpose of overturning the election results.  Rather than me providing you with endless examples of their bias, here's an easier exercise for you:
Find ONE example of a neutral/positive news article on the Trump administration printed in the NY Times.  Even when they cover good news like when Carrier announced they would not close down a plant in Indiana and save 1,100 jobs, the NY Times "spun" their coverage to minimize the jobs saved to 900.  Even veteran liberal journalists like Bob Woodward have criticized them!!! 
Keith Added Mar 28, 2017 - 12:26pm
Mike, this is a narrow question.  I understand that you believe the NT Times is biased.  Fair enough, your opinion.  But that is not what you said.  You said the NY Times "outright admit they have no objectivity when it comes to politics and Trump specifically."
I am looking for where the NY Times outright admits that.  That would be a statement from the NY Times declaring it is not objective and is biased in its political reporting.  That would not be a restatement of your opinion of the Times or that of Bob Woodard or anyone else.
Bill H. Added Mar 28, 2017 - 12:28pm
Trump's personality disorder causes him to crave attention. If the attention is not positive, then the source is "fake" or "evil" according to him. He also has a desire for negativity and doom. These traits will never go away and will just enhance the spiral to failure.
Mike Haluska Added Mar 28, 2017 - 12:31pm
Keith - I take it by your accusation:
"accelerating the target="_blank">mainstreaming of racism in the Republican Party."
that you are a "Progressive" Democrat.  The people who supposedly pride themselves on their "tolerance, understanding, acceptance of all, willing to listen to other points of view" are the biggest hypocrites in America.  Whenever someone has a disagreement with your established "Dogma", your group immediately condemns, ostracizes and accuses them of (pick your choice - racists, homophobes, Islamaphobes, NAZI's).
The good news is that nobody's buying this crap anymore.  The party that institutionalized poverty by establishing a permanent underclass trapped in a Welfare State is in no position to lecture ANYONE about being a racist.  For the past six decades, minorities have been kept on a new version of the old Southern Plantation - the urban Welfare State.  Chains and fences have been replaced by threat of "benefits" being taken away.  The prisoners of the Welfare State are provided "benefits" of the worst education possible, lousy housing, dangerous drug infested neighborhoods, unemployment, etc. 
No wonder Democrats are running scared now that Trump has opened a lot of oppressed eyes with a simple question:
                      "What the hell do you have to lose?" 
After losing a major portion of the Democratic Party's original base to Trump (working class Americans), you would think that Democrats would look to find ways to win them - not INSULT THEM FOR DARING TO STRAY OFF THE PLANTATION!!!
Thomas Sutrina Added Mar 28, 2017 - 12:39pm
Keith, there is truth in Trump saying crazy things that got media coverage.  But 100% coverage of rallies of Trump is not what the media does.  It cherry picks the craziness.  For example Sean Hannity had a 45 minute interview a few days ago and only one minute was used.  They wanted to get an answer to fit their objective.  That was the one minute.   
Mike Haluska Added Mar 28, 2017 - 12:39pm
Keith - here is something indisputable for you to consider:
The Welfare State has been in existence for over 60 years and has spent $22 TRILLION on fighting/alleviating poverty and what has actually been accomplished???
        Stated Goal                                           Actual Result
1) reduce number of people in poverty        increase in number of poverty
2) improve education/health of poor            lousy education and health
3) reduce government dependence               increased govt dependence
If you could go back in time to 1964 (when the "War on Poverty" legislation was passed) and testify before Congress that 60 years from now we will have spent $22 TRILLION and poverty will have only increased, what chances do you think that legislation would have of passing????
Keith Added Mar 28, 2017 - 12:41pm
Quote [from Mike] "Keith - I take it by your accusation that you are a "Progressive" Democrat."
I take it by this statement that you reach quick, irrational and ill supported conclusions designed to dismiss fact based arguments by labeling those who made them.
I am, in fact, a lifelong Republican.  I have voted for the Republican candidate in every Presidential election, prior to this one, since I first voted for Ford over Carter in 1976.  Yes, that means I voted for Reagan twice, for both Bush's twice and it means I voted against Obama twice.  Unlike our draft dodging President I served this nation as an officer in the Army for 11 years.
I broke that lifetime voting pattern, not out of any love for Hillary Clinton, but because Donald Trump's combination of demagoguery and mentally ill disconnection from reality represents a threat to this country that I have not seen in my lifetime. 
Since the rest of your ignorant ridden rant had nothing to do with me, I shall ignore it.
Mike Haluska Added Mar 28, 2017 - 2:10pm
Keith - I apologize for lumping you in with "progressives" based on one Writer Beat post.  Knowing that, I wonder how you could support a criminal, traitor, self-serving influence peddler who never held a real job her entire life who couldn't even elucidate why should be President?  Say what you want about Trump's personality, he built more and hired more people than the Clinton's ever did.
Keith Added Mar 28, 2017 - 2:35pm
Mike, Hillary Clinton is corrupt.  Trump is corrupt, hateful and insane.  And his business acumen is as inflated beyond reality as his ego.  He built his empire on a series of scams, unfair dealings and outright frauds like Trump University.  He managed to foist the risk of his numerous failures onto others so that they paid for them rather than him.  When he won, he won, when he lost (which was often) he managed to make someone else lose.
Bill H. Added Mar 28, 2017 - 10:43pm
Mike, your habit of constant labeling is getting worse than Ryan Messano!
It's certainly not making you many friends.
Try understanding people as having different ideas and solutions to many different issues, which is a good thing. It used to be what made this country great.
Simply tagging people with "Liberal", "Socialist", "Democrat", "Commie", "Pinko", "Progressive", or "Facist" is childish and accomplishes nothing other than instantly preventing and furthur constructive dialogue and making one look foolish.
John Minehan Added Mar 29, 2017 - 12:15pm
This is an interesting approach to coverage. 
Mike Haluska Added Mar 29, 2017 - 2:31pm
Bill H - are you serious?  The only "name" I use is "Progressive" or "Liberal" - which is what they call themselves!  I NEVER use derogatory terms for people's race, religion, ethnicity, etc. 
The fact that I respond with commentary that is rational and objective (confirmed by of lots of Writer Beat readers/authors) is what matters.  Making friends is a great side effect of my writing, but not an objective.  I believe in hearing people out (I have NEVER censored any commenters from my articles) but that doesn't mean I have to blank check accept everything that is offered. 
I don't accept that all "change" is good or believe that we should proceed with "change" (or remaining static) just for its own sake.  I attack arguments - not the people making them!   
Keith Added Mar 29, 2017 - 3:02pm
Mike, I think Bill's point is that you try to dismiss or belittle the argument, not by addressing the argument, but by labeling the person who made it.  In that sense you use it in a derogatory way even if it is not otherwise derogatory. 
Mike Haluska Added Mar 29, 2017 - 3:39pm
Keith - how can me calling someone "Progressive" when they continually espouse and promote "progressive" ideas and identify themselves as "progressive" be considered derogatory on my part?  If I point out the fallacy of their argument, it's not an "insult" to them personally.
What's the point of an Honest Debate if one of the debaters can run and hide behind false accusations on "name calling"???  I (and others) get called "neocon", NAZI, fascist, racist, Islamaphobe, homophobe, xenophobe, anti-immigrant, anti-Mexican, etc. by "progressives" every other post! 
The "Name Calling" is coming predominantly from the left, my friend!
Keith Added Mar 29, 2017 - 3:45pm
That's just it, by labeling them you feel doing so exposes the "fallacy of their argument."  You then present your caricatured version of a "progressive liberal" to smear them with. 
Whenever you start describing people, rather than addressing their specific points, you have left the path of wisdom.
Mike Haluska Added Mar 29, 2017 - 3:50pm
Keith - have you EVER heard a "conservative" complain about a "progressive" calling him a "conservative"???  It would never even occur to us to do so! 
This is what I am talking about - "progressives" try and obfuscate and deflect attention away from valid points and get people all wound up about "name calling" or some other totally unrelated issue!  How long will you allow Political Correctness influence your thinking and judgment?  
Keith Added Mar 29, 2017 - 3:58pm
Well let's take the approach you did.  Suppose their argument went like this:
"I take it by your statement that you are a reactionary conservative.  As such you should understand that you have a deep hatred for people and the values of this country.  Conservatives are historically, and to this day, closely identified with racism, sexism and serving only the interests of the well to do.  This is undeniable."
Like I said, you label someone, then you define that label as you see fit, to attack the person rather than what they actually said.  
Whenever you start describing people, rather than addressing the specifics of what they said, you have left the path of wisdom.
Bill H. Added Mar 29, 2017 - 4:05pm
Mike, your simply categorizing people based on some idiotic list of platform marching order commandments or beliefs that both major parties have concocted to try and create their "identity". You have fallen into the same trap that those you label and plunder have done, you simply follow what you have instructed to think. This is the problem with party "loyalists" on both "sides" these days.
It's easier to label than to discuss and reason.
Mike Haluska Added Mar 29, 2017 - 4:17pm
Keith - in your example, I wouldn't deny I am a conservative.  I would do what I always do - rip the floorboards out from under their bullshit arguments and insults.  Modifiers like "reactionary" are meaningless and people who use the term to describe opponents are simply trying to "shame" their opposition into silence - just like Uncle Saul Alinsky taught them.
Now - find an instance where I use modifiers like "reactionary", "incendiary", etc. with the single term "progressive".  I don't hang names around the "progressives" necks - I hang their OWN DEEDS AND WORDS.  When I point out the actual results of 60 years of the Welfare State after they have supported and condoned it, that's an example of "hanging their own deeds and words around their neck".  This is what happens when you try and defend the indefensible. 
Since they can't argue with what they just said/wrote, their only recourse is to try and somehow delegitimize the opponent pointing out the flaw.  I don't run and hide from those tactics like so many people in the past did.  EVERYONE used to be terrified to be called a "racist" so they would always cave to the progressives instead of defending what they know is right.
Keith Added Mar 29, 2017 - 4:18pm
Well this amounts to "my name calling is more fair than your name calling."  You suffer a complete inability to see the other perspective.
Bill H. Added Mar 29, 2017 - 5:53pm
They, them, their.
That says it all!
Mike Haluska Added Mar 30, 2017 - 9:59am
Keith - I don't see how you are arriving at that conclusion.  I requested that you find an example where I "name called" by any other term than the term they themselves use.  You didn't provide one.  So HOW can addressing someone who prides themselves on being a "progressive" be "name calling"?
With your standard, my addressing you as "Keith" can be considered "name calling"!  Maybe you should pay closer attention to the CONTENT of the message itself rather than how the message is addressed????
Mike Haluska Added Mar 30, 2017 - 10:16am
Bill H - your accusation:
"Mike, your simply categorizing people based on some idiotic list of platform marching order commandments or beliefs that both major parties have concocted to try and create their "identity"."
is based on what?  I am NOT a registered Republican and I make opposing comments about Republicans all the time.  I consider myself an Objectivist philosophically and a Constitutionalist politically.  I have criticized the progressive wing of the Democratic Party and praised the traditional working class Democrat wing.  Likewise I have criticized the establishment wing of the Republican Party and have praised the conservative wing.
I don't approve of everything Trump is doing, but then I have yet to approve of everything any politician does.  I also understand that our once great nation is going bankrupt and neither party has the political will to talk to the American people like adults and seek their understanding and cooperation to get our finances in order.  This is the most serious problem facing America and I believe the solution lies in two areas:
1) Control government spending based on the Constitution - suspend/eliminate all programs not sanctioned as a duty of the Federal Government by the Constitution.  That will reduce spending 50% at least.
2) Unleash the power of the Free Market to grow the economy so that economic growth can provide sufficient tax revenue to cover spending and significantly pay down the National Debt.  I recommend a Constitutional amendment requiring a true balanced budget and legal maximum on the National Debt of no more than 10% of GDP.
We are heading toward a financial crisis that will make the Great Depression look like a picnic.  Why people are worried about "gender neutral bathrooms", Russians spying on us (of course they do - we spy on them), gay marriage and the dozens of other happy horseshit topics is beyond me.  If we have a financial crash, we won't have to worry about gays buying wedding cakes at the bakery because there won't be any bakeries open to sell bread, much less wedding cakes.
Keith Added Mar 30, 2017 - 10:41am
"With your standard, my addressing you as "Keith" can be considered "name calling"! "
Well, if the approach is "you are a Keith and all Keith's are hypocrites who hate liberty, freedom and dogs" then it would be.  Which is what you are doing.
Keith Added Mar 30, 2017 - 10:41am
Here is the provision you claim does not exist.
"you are a "Progressive" Democrat"  which you then declare "are the biggest hypocrites in America."  You then smear them all with positions you create for them, caricatures to smear the group based on what you think some may have.
Mike Haluska Added Mar 30, 2017 - 11:38am
Keith - I finally get your point!  It's like declaring that all Trump supporters are a "Basket of Deplorables".
Mike Haluska Added Mar 30, 2017 - 11:42am
Keith - your statement:
"Well, if the approach is "you are a Keith and all Keith's are hypocrites who hate liberty, freedom and dogs" then it would be.  Which is what you are doing."
would be true IF I ACTUALLY SAID THAT.  Please - find me a SPECIFIC EXAMPLE of me hanging something somebody else said around a poster and then I will respond accordingly.  No more shoulda, coulda, mighta, maybe OK?
Keith Added Mar 30, 2017 - 12:16pm
The example has been provided.  You aren't listening.  No point in this if you won't listen.
You hung it on me.  You weren't even right about what I am, but even if I had been a progressive democrat your approach was wrong and was directed at dodging the points I made by converting the discussion into "us vs. them" generalized smears.
Done with this.  If anyone has something meaningful to say, please join the discussion.
Mike Haluska Added Mar 30, 2017 - 12:40pm
Keith - I apologize for not being able to see your side of this conversation.  It's nothing personal and I'm sure we'll engage again in a proper spirit of intelligent discussion.
Let's conduct ourselves like the professional journalists of the past:
John Minehan Added Apr 3, 2017 - 2:54pm
This may be of interest.
Keith Added Apr 3, 2017 - 3:01pm
John, I've seen the argument that government intervention drives up costs, but other countries, those evil "socialized medicine" countries, spend less, a whole lot less.  Most spend about half per capita what we do. 
The argument, relying on some lame anecdotes (for which you could find similar stories in America) claims healthcare is worse there.  If so, their worse healthcare somehow provides they superior life expectancies, lower infant mortalities, lower child mortalities and a  populace that in polls expresses greater satisfaction with their healthcare system than Americans generally do.
John Minehan Added Apr 3, 2017 - 3:28pm
It really depends.
The NHS is a broken system that probably still exists because Thatcher allowed a parallel system of private insurance to develop in the 1980s and the India has become a good enough system for some cases to be sent there for treatment. 
The Belgian and Swiss and Dutch systems are mandated public insurance. 
The French and German systems are mandated private insurance, but with much more government intervention in rate-making.
Ultimately, we need to re-grow a market.
Expended use of HSAs could make most primary care a "cash and carry" market with some uniform law on advertising of rates by professionals.
Professional services probably require some system of  discounted fee for service using non-employer-based groups, if only to let some sort of true market to develop.
Eventually, this could move to a system like India's with minimal government intervention and limited use of private insurance.  
John Minehan Added Apr 3, 2017 - 3:30pm
"The Belgian and Swiss and Dutch systems are mandated public insurance."
---Should be "private insurance."

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