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Getting a read on indicators

February 11, 2013

I’d like to begin this column with an apology to those who were happy I wasn’t going to write anymore. Sorry, I didn’t lie, but circumstances changed....

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Feb-11-13 5:25 AM

Welcome back.

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Feb-11-13 8:17 AM

Hope you continue to write for a long time. You have thought provoking articles that often address issues that otherwise go ignored.

As to the cost of health care, just wonder has anyone read a study on how much a Single Payer system might save us in costs? It just seems like if we all could (emphasis on could) purchase the same health insurance, having a larger pull of people would lower the costs.

How much does the drug industry contribute to the rising costs? How much do tests that most likely really do not need to be conducted contribute to the rising costs? How much does not having family physicians and walk in places (not er) contribute to the costs?

Cost of health care is one issue that we as a country must address. It affects every one of us in some way or another.

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Feb-11-13 8:23 AM

Whether people agree with you or not (like myself) on some subjects, it is good someone takes the time to give an written opinion.

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Feb-11-13 8:28 AM

Welcome back. I also do not always agree with you, but the conversation around the coffee shop does get people thinking. So carry on. Good job.

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Feb-11-13 8:42 AM

Some interesting points, however the gist of the whole article is we have to spend more and more. Here is one fact, in the last year 80% of the jobs created in this country have been created in RED states. Also, in reading many of his comments it strikes me that he probably worked for the government or is on government programs at this time. His whole argument always reverts back to the fact that we are all entitled and that the wealthy have to pay more. However, please keep writing and contributing your comments they are always thought provocative.

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Feb-11-13 8:49 AM

paul, the economy is a success if you think like a democrat. He names one of the 3 things libs always mention. One is tax revenue, as democrats have a voracious appetite for this. I know I exist to keep the libs happy with my money. The other 2 would be, its bush's fault and due to global warming. In this together ? hmmm, I do not see that in the rabid union response to choice in schools or right to work laws. Those union folk, right Paul ? Building America they say . I thought obamacare was supposed to fix rising costs. It needs revision already ? I pray for another great depression. i could not figure till now how people could vote dumbocratic till i saw obama voters.What a grasp of the issues they have. A grasp to mess it up I say. In this together is code for the repubs to say yessir democrat ! yessir , Paul, more unions and taxes. thats worked.

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Feb-11-13 8:51 AM

" But the facts are that most of those southern states have higher numbers of people collecting public assistance than we have here and by fairly large numbers."

By simply looking at the number of people collecting you overlook expenditure per person.

For example, the last numbers I saw showed California have over 1 million more people on Medicaid then NYS, but NYS manages to spends more then double what California does on the program in a year.

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Feb-11-13 9:05 AM

hey judeye, a single payer system ? Sounds like our succesful public schools ! Sinkholes for money !Union teachers christopher ! What a knack the libs have for getting things backwards. So one could say the only choice available from a democrat is an abortion. There is none for our schools and now a single payer system is in the offing. Judeye, is there anything, in your mind that a govt program cant solve ? You know, its the you did not build it syndrome of the democrats. Oh , we need a great depression to clear out the dumbocrats and their minions, the unions.

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Feb-11-13 10:03 AM

Christopher, Very well written, researched and reasoned -- a very sensible approach with prudent proposals. You and I may scrap on particular points and methodologies (like what constitutes a valid statistical datapoints...) but in all and in the end, pragmatic collective approach is what solves problems.

Nicely articulated and good job. Keep doing more (btw, market indices are really ***** things. Certain market indices are pretty good quantitative directional indicators, but yet, still have supply-demand irrational forces driving them...weird, but they're the best we have for now)

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Feb-11-13 10:14 AM

Breaking my rule here: Of the 10 states with the highest poverty rates, 8 of them are "Right to Work" states; Mississippi 21.9%, Louisiana, 18.3%,Alabama 16.7%, Texas 16.2%,Arkansas 15.9%, Oklahoma 16.6%, Arizona 15.2%, and Tennessee 15%. I didn't address how much per person we pay for those on Welfare and Medicaid, only base numbers. "How much" and "how many" are entirely different discussions. I have addressed the "how much" issues previously. OK, done now, have at it.

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Feb-11-13 10:20 AM

I am very happy to have Mr. Christopher back. He is someone who stirs the pot and gets people thinking. He puts it out there, and, like him or not, he pulls you in and gets the best (or worst) from his readers. Glad D'Augustino was a big enough man to put his hat in hand and ask for Paul's return. As for the article: We might have come here on different ships, but we're all in the same boat now!

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Feb-11-13 10:21 AM

Steinerdzzz...if you recall, we just had ourselves a Great Recession brought on by the GOP. The country voted them out, brought in Democrats and things began to turn around. And last year, the country resoundingly slammed the door on you guys when, without any accomplishments to brag about, you guys tried to sell your make-believe 1950s ideology and totally failed 1980s supply-side economics.

The country didn't buy it, twice in a row. Not sure what else you and your ilk need to get into your collective heads that the country (and the world) has moved 60 years beyond Pleasantville and 30 years beyond Reagan.

Wait, sorry, there's a place for your politics in today's world -- it's called the Smithsonian.

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Feb-11-13 10:36 AM

Glad you are back although I don't agree with you on everything you are spot on on this one.

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Feb-11-13 10:43 AM

I'm not looking for the rich to support the poor. I'm just looking for the rich and big corps to pay their fair share. Having so many loop holes to avoid paying fair share of taxes is what has gone too far.

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Feb-11-13 12:54 PM

Welcome back, Paul -

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Feb-11-13 1:06 PM

Excellent article Paul. One thing we could do to help the medicare fund is have the government negotiate with the pharacuetical industry for cheaper prices because we buy so much. This was outlawed by the republicans, and should be reconsidered.

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Feb-11-13 2:46 PM

There are only two ways that healthcare should operate and obamacare is not one of them. Either revert back to the way it was or go with a single payer system paid for by a national sales tax of 3 or 4%. obamacare has and will continue to increase costs on those who can least afford it while exempting some from paying for it. National sales tax and single payer will have everyone pay their fair share because everyone has to pay that tax. No exemptions from it.

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Feb-11-13 3:28 PM

American: Obamacare is the transitional compromise to get us from the old system to single payer. The old system was unsustainable. Obamacare will make some proper fixes/improvements but will still fall short. Hence, the only viable fix, at that time. on the table will be single payer. And you're correct -- seeing how most of health care issues comes from our behavioral consumptive lifestyle, taxing such consumption, ie sales tax, is a correct method to pay for downstream healthcare.

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Feb-11-13 3:47 PM

Obamacare is an atrocity that needs to be repealed. It was done completely wrong and there is nothing good about it. It is just a new tax on low income people. And there will be more coming soon. Like the one that hits smokers and extra up to approx. $5000 a year. But only the low income or working poor need to worry about it.

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Feb-11-13 6:17 PM

Just when I thought we were in for a break he writes another column! I can handle his opinions even when we disagree. But when he gets insulting that's more than I can handle.

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Feb-11-13 6:34 PM

Is this the same Christopher that has made such degrading remarks in other letters and editorials to other posters such as this one? "Now, if you REALLY want to appear to be a right wing idiot, bring up the Kennedy's"

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Feb-11-13 8:35 PM

Well opinions are like acne. Everyone has some. I only know western NY and Dunkirk are losing population and taxes and fees are going up and up. That does not seem like a good situation at worst. Good cheerleading however "Rome is burning" Oh, the full impact of the medicare bill is yet to be felt. IMHO

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Feb-12-13 6:25 AM

Not to worry,the state of the union speech this evening will feature more "investment" which will fix everything. It worked so well in 09 why not do it again. Surely there must be a couple of solar panel and battery companies out there who could use OUR money right?

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Feb-12-13 7:39 AM

""How much" and "how many" are entirely different discussions."

Actually they aren't since the issue most people have with the various welfare programs isn't that they exist but instead that they are so generous (as pointed out that NY spends more then double what CA does but with a million less people on Medicaid simply because our left wing govs have signed NY up for every medicaid program imaginable.)

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Feb-12-13 8:15 AM


Just their fair share.

Google income see just how far the gap between the very rich and the rest of us has grown...IN THE PAST TEN YEARS.

Of course there has always been a gap. But not since just before the Great Depression has the gap in incomes been this large. And it is growing!

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