Opinion: Deception used for single-payer

Some are trying to change the discussion from what we think of what Mr. Gruber has said vs. what he is doing. Vermont Democrat Rep. Browning has been championing the lead to have Gov. Shumlin show Vermonters the plan of how we’re to pay for single payer health insurance.
On the topic of Medicare, Vermont Democrat Sen. Peter Galbraith posted this on VTDigger.org: “Actually, there is truth to the assertion that single payer advocates wanted Vermont to take over Medicare. This year, I introduced S. 252, the only single payer financing plan yet put forward. My bill would have exempted Medicare recipients, federal employees and military from the single payer system and from having to pay for it (unless they opted in). These groups already have high quality government financed health care and I knew that few wanted to give up what they had to join a new single payer system. And I knew that my senior citizen constituents were especially concerned about changes to a health care system that they liked. I thought it made sense to put these concerns to rest.
“While parts of S. 252 ultimately became law, the legislature stripped out the exemptions for Medicare recipients, federal employees and the military. Deb Richter and Mike Fisher were particularly adamant that all Vermonters, including seniors, had to be in our single payer system.”
Galbraith’s assessment of the election: “If the Vermont Republican Party weren’t mostly brain dead, they would have done their research and made more of this issue. I hope my fellow Democrats will take notice. If we do go forward with single payer financing, we need to be pragmatic — and listen to Vermonters!”
Actually, some of the rank and file Republican candidates did make an issue of this.
Gruber revealed that Obamacare passed because, in his words, “Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage, and basically, call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but that was really, really critical to getting the thing to pass.”
Speaking of the companies who insure employees, he said this: “Oh, all the stuff we said about taxes, that was BS! And this other stuff, it’s all BS! We had to do it because we had to get this law passed, and sorry.”
And he said this: “Politically, it’s really hard to get rid of. And the only way we could take it on was to label it, call it a tax on insurance plans, rather than a tax on people. And we all know it’s really a tax on people who hold those insurance plans.”
Well, Gruber says that tax, through an accounting gimmick, is eventually going to hit all employer plans. All of them. See Gruber’s video labeled No. 6., where he notes that for unions and employers who object in 2018, “at that point if they want to get rid of it they’re going to have to fill a trillion dollar hole in the deficit … It’s on the books now.”
We had to be lied to and numbers skewed to reflect this mindset. That’s why so many are suspect to the numbers being produced for Vermont’s single payer plan. We’re to trust the numbers Gruber comes up with this time and are not manipulated to a predestined number? Fool me once …
Valerie Mullin

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