Single-payer insurance plan moves ahead

January 13, 2012

A Democrat-sponsored effort to initiate single-payer health coverage in California is under the legislative microscope next week in Sacramento hearings.

Coauthored by 29 members of the Senate, the measure, SB 810, by Sen Mark Leno (D-San Francisco), would create the California Healthcare System, to “provide health care to all California residents,” according to the legislation’s wording. It also proposes penalties to residents and businesses choosing not to insure themselves.

Preliminary cost analyses suggest the system would set taxpayers back $200 billion annually, with these costs “offset by an unknown extent of re-direction of revenues from existing health coverage programs,” according to a legislative committee review.

The plan goes before the Senate Appropriations Committee Tuesday. When the bill passed that body’s Health Committee, Sen. Sam Blakeslee (R-San Luis Obispo) voted against it.

Part of the proposal as currently written calls for it to take effect only when the state’s Health and Human Services Agency secretary “determines that adequate funding is available to implement it.”

Leno contends his measure will “enact a modern universal health care system in California… combining public financing and competitive private health care delivery.”

The lawmaker said the current system “is fragmented, administratively complex and clinically wasteful, leading to billions of dollars being  diverted annually away from direct medical care and driving  unaffordable premium increases.”

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Mark Leno – ah yes, the champion of “how much kiddie porn is too much”.

He has a great bill here. I’m sure corporate America is on the edge of their seat just waiting for a single payer health care system so they can all move their businesses here. But that’s O.K., California is already overloaded with people – mostly fruits and nuts and those that will pick them. Just wondering though, when the tax base is all dried up – who will pay for our fat ass state government?

AMAZING!! Look thru all the posts here and look who is whining about their situation and is blaming any and everybody for all of their problems. Ladies and gentlemen, THAT is the difference between people. It is not a question of rich or poor, it is not a difference between Democrat left or Republican right. It is about people either taking or not taking responsibilities for their own actions and situations.

There is no doubt that this country is changing from one type to the other. And not, I suggest, for the better.

Rather, it is instructive to note some words of Oscar Wilde:

“A cynic is a man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing”.

Professional doubters about everything, especially any scary ‘changes’. Either through ignorance, lack of decent information, or just plain cowardice; these soldiers for a demonstrably broken and failed system march blindly on !

There are even a few haters of any advancements and of whole groups of people they view as ‘OTHER’ that they feel do not deserve any help or assisstance whatsoever.

Thankfully, there are not many of these true ‘super-egos’, but they help drive the discussion that confuses the uninformed and timid.

One point I do somewhat agree about: We do have to take responsibility for our actions. In this regard, we all owe each other, and ourselves, a responsibility toward civilization.

On the Day we celebrate our great Leader of Human Rights: Martin Luther King Jr. ; let us hope and work to have MORE civility, MORE responsibility, MORE civilization …and LESS cynics that do nothing among us !

Other than the insurance companies and the republicans who’s blaming everybody for ‘all of their problems’?

If a man walks up to you and points a shotgun in your face then we should say tough sh!t, that’s your problem, take responsibility for yourself, I’m not helping you! Even though you didn’t know he was there, you walked down the street where this guy was so it’s your fault. You’re on your own, if you get shot then that’s your fault. Why should we try and help you? Do you have any morals at all? You just don’t get how we are all connected and how we need to take care of each other to create a strong society. I know how much the right hates to hear that, for sure you will call it some type of word that ends with an ‘isim’ but it’s just a matter of looking at the whole picture and being not just moral people but a strong country. Just as it wasn’t my young teen relative or his parents fault for him getting leukemia and dying, it’s not your fault that a guy is going to shot you in the face. If most of us had to pay the bills that my relatives did for this boys illness they wouldn’t have been able to do it. That’s not being irresponsible, it’s the insurance company pointing that shotgun in sick peoples faces that have a major illness because they got sick. How is getting cancer or a heart attack irresponsible? Not all illnesses are due to lifestyle.

We all know that you are financially very well off and can afford multi million dollar hospital bills but many people at no fault of their own can’t.

As long as there are people in this world that don’t understand that we are all connected and that we all need to help each other then you’re right it won’t get better. We will just be a dog eat dog society where we continue to just divide and conquer, no one wins with that mentality.

Thanks for the job advice, sloweb. What do you do –or did you do–for work? What health insurance do you carry? We could learn from you. You are so superior. Honestly, I want to know what that great insurance company is, how much the premiums are, and what benefits you receive for the money! We can use it as something to aspire to, provided you’re not an insurance salesman….

I don’t believe he wants to tell us that. I wonder why?

Canada is an excellent model to follow. They call it “Medicare”, only it is for everyone (as it should be).

You are playing with fire. Take a look at how hot the fire gets:

What Soviet (ditto Canadian) Medicine Teaches Us

Mises Daily: Friday, August 21, 2009 by Yuri N. Maltsev

Would you like us to instead go the way of Ron Paul and the John Birch Society?

Thank you for that informative link.

You’re right, it eventually gets carried away with an overbalance of bureaucratic overpaid CEO’s, Presidents & vice presidents etc, as in the Eastern most Province of Canada.

In Nova Scotia they have 10 CEOs, 72 vice-presidents, and hundreds of directors to manage a system that serves fewer than one million people. This practice only led to real cutbacks in front-line care, eight-month waiting lists for the pediatric clinics and 400-day waits for a nursing home room.

However, other Provinces have already faced this reality and fixed some of it. In New Brunswick they went from eight authorities down to two. Alberta, a Province with five million people, went from eight to only one, saving $1 billion in administrative costs that was reinvested in front-line costs.

With respect to Russia in 1918. In the depth of that socialistic experiment, widespread apathy & low quality work paralyzed the whole nation, even their bread basket agriculture sector, not just the health-care experiment which also was a colossal failure as the writer describes so well.

slomike, thanks for the links.

You ask ‘where is your source?’

Halifax, Nova Scotia newspaper available online namely ‘The Chronicle Herald”, they have an ongoing series of articles about their health-care system as the debate over where to go after the health-care accord with the Federal government expires in 2014.

The article headed ‘Administration needs streamlining’ was dated Jan,14, 2012.

Another article dated Jan 13, 2012 was headed ‘ Good governance first step to curing system ills’.

Another one dated January 12, 2012 read ‘A few switches to put ‘train wreck’ back on the right track’.

As an expatriate, I find the best source to keep informed about the current health status of the Canadian Health/Medicare debacle today is available online from ‘’ Canada’s Politics and Government Newsweekly.

Todays (January 17) there’s an article headed ‘Federal-provincial health accord expires in 2014, experts say its time feds talk about their plans’.

That three-page (best article I’ve ever read) on the subject, states ‘sustainability’ needs to be discussed in a national manner, which some allege is currently creating ‘a perfect storm’ for the dreaded privatization.

IMHO, what a shame that would be, because many of us believe the right to health-car e should not be for sale, that’s why we the ‘commonn-people’ enacted the first sorta free ‘hospital health-care’ system in North America (Prince Albert, Saskatchewan).

Thanks for that, wolfhound. So much in these comments consist of “I heard”. One can almost divine the source from the opinion “I heard” wants to express. Good lord, there was no medicare before Johnson got it through in the sixties. Does anyone here seriously want to do away with it? (Stay out of it, Gimlet. I’ve got your invisible hand right here. )

Check out the costs of health-care to our Pacific Coast neighbors to the North in semi-socialist Canada.

In British Columbia (BC) health-care premiums are tied to ‘Adjusted Net Income’ and subsidized;

$O – $22,000 monthly premium assistance 100 %.

$22,001 – $24,000 it’s 80% subsidy. One person pays $12.10. Family of two pays $21.80. Family of 3 or more pays $24.20.

$$24,001 – $26,000 it’s 60% subsidy.

$26,000 – $28,000 it’s40% subsidy.

$28,001 – 30,000 it’s 20% subsidy.

Over $30,000 they pay full rate which $60.50 for one person, $109.00 for family of two and $121.00 for family of three or more.

However, in BC they also have a value added tax of 12% on most items one purchase and the system is far from perfect in some ways. A recent poll in Canada indicated that 87% were satisfied with the system.

The population of BC is only 4.5M and entire Canada only 33M and California at 37.5M.

California is doing so well, so lets add another reason for jobs to leave the state, when we are done there will only be those who use services left and no one to pay for the services.

California is already bankrupt with $500,000 billion in unfunded pension debt and a deficit, this with a shrinking tax base.

Texas is starting to look better with a low unemployment rate and no state income tax, gee what could I do with another 11% of my income in my pocket.

Lets just call California Greece.

Texas’ poverty rate rises for second year


Austin Bureau

Published: 13 September 2011 05:24 PM

AUSTIN — The number of Texans living in poverty jumped to more than 4.6 million last year, an increase of nearly 9 percent, the Census Bureau reported Tuesday.

For the second consecutive year, Texas’ poverty rate grew — to 18.4 percent, well above the national average of 15.1 percent.

Texas’ rate was sixth-highest among the states last year, trailing only Mississippi, Louisiana , Georgia, Arizona and New Mexico. Texas also ranked sixth in poverty in 2008 and 2009.

Once again, Texas led all states in the share of its population that lacks health insurance, at 24.6 percent. The national uninsured rate is 16.3 percent

I believe also that there are a preponderance of minimum wage jobs in Texas. That’s $7.25. Such a princely sum. Add to all this: Rick Perry? Doesn’t add much incentive to join that wagon train.


Please, quit scaring the Republicans with actual facts, okay? It they start reading the facts, as some of us provide, then their “Faux News” is doomed for sure!

Shhhhhhh, don’t scare them away, because they provide us with such comedy relief! Thanks!

Oh Ted – I live to watch Bill O’s head explode! ;-)

I wonder if Texas’s hugh hispanic population from south of the border has anything to do with the poverty and low wages number? As far as Rick Perry (and no I’m not a fan) he doesn’t make jobs. Maybe there is such a low pay rate, because there is a lack of skilled workers?

Interesting that in the last thirty years as the migration from south of the border came into California and Texas, both saw numerous problems with low paying jobs go up and issues with medical care. Connection???

Although the data is some dated the current situation has not improved

Texas has the Republican-Libertarian-TeaParty ideal government. The Legislature meets on the 2nd Tuesday in January of each odd numbered year.

The Governor is the only one who can call a ‘special’ session. In 2003

I believe Perry called 3 such sessions to discuss re-districting.

Doesn’t sound like that allows much time for tackling mundane issues such as poverty or healthcare.

Texas and California are both originally “Mexico”. therefore there have always been large Hispanic populations

Several states have complained this year that they were short of workers because many Hispanics have left.

Of course you do know, that white folks were not the original settlers in the US.

I recently read that farmers are going out of business in Alabama as they can’t get people to work on their farms. These new strict immigration laws just took effect last year and they are already have a huge negative economic impact. I remember reading an interesting article a few years ago that broke down the negative financial impact our state would have if the right had their way and managed to get rid of all the Hispanics. Stores would close, we would receive less state and fed income in the form of taxes. Like in the southern states that recently passed those immigration laws, farms would close up. It actually could bankrupt our state. They complain about the drain on our system but there is another side to this issue.

The “Old Ones” , the “Anciens”, the “Anisazi” have been waiting patiently…for centuries. They never did disappear. They just became invisible to most of the palefaces.

Let me make it a LITTLE simpler for you as you OBVIOUSLY think that I don’t understand history. My point was that you can look at the flow in the last thirty years. Have you not owned a t.v. or read a newspaper in the last thirty years to now this?

Well I guess I haved to assume you must not have. My comment was not ment to be a racial comment, it is a fact that I was pointing out that has been talked about and discussed. You must have mised all the bru ha about George Bush’s fence. It was in the news in response to the heavy imigration flow. It has been a hot bed topic in many a presidential and other debates in the last thirty years. Did you know they now have thin screen t.v.s to watch all this great information on????

i have never met a Hispanic by the name of HUGH.

BTDT: YOU are GROSSLY mistaken. Just WRONG, Man !

Course…you don’t care. Just another full-of-yourself misanthrobe !

Really that is the most intellengent responce you can come up with? If you don’t think illegal imigration has been a drain on the school systems, medical and other state resourses, it is you sir who is the fool.

Also why don’t you ask some hispanics who are here legally how they feel about illegal imigration? I have asked quite a few I know. They make me seem tame in my response.

I have never known of any ‘tame’ racists.

You would be a first !

Go put you head back in the sand little boy. I just repeat what I read. The fact that you don’t or can’t read isn’t my issue.

Here’s a little something for you to read:

It might be helpful to know some history of the back and forth immigration over the years. It’s also important to recognize that not all Hispanics are Mexican. More and more people have entered the US from Central American countries. There was a large influx after we meddled in Nicaragua.

My point? It’s not such a simple issue -and you are displaying a knee-jerk reaction -including your assertions that the immigrants pay no taxes and gobble up all our resources.

Honey let me let you in on a little secret. I’m a bigger lover of History and Pol. Science. I understand the fluctions of Population in Ca. Starting with the great influx of whites during the Gold Rush, the influx of Chinese during the building of the railroads, the Japanense after the turn of the twentith century, who use to be the big source of cheap labor before the influx of Hispanics later.

Second I use the term Hispanics and more than understand the termanology I’m using, having learned it from a hispanic girl I dated back in the 80″s, OH MY, I know and I’m suppose to be a racist.

I understand the Nicaragua point. Read all about it as it happened in the 80’s. Have a very good friend that come from there about the time it was happening. Oh no again I know a Hispanic!! How is it possible. Yes these are some of the many I know that I made my point about how they feel about illegal immigration. Not racist, just facts that you can’t handle.

Last if you are here illegally and working iilegally do you really think that someone is sitting down every April 15th and submitting a tax form?

I get you charts etc. but do you have any thoughts or thought process of your own that you possess?

Do you get my point?? I have stated my thought process. No knee jerk. Made up of years of reading and talking to others to form an opinion.

BTDT “honey”??? the name you should use is “brook” seriously. thank you.

Another question for you. You just keep lobbing out sayings without any thought as to why you feel unlimited imigration is o.k. So you don’t think it’s a problem to let in another 10, 15 or 20 million people in and have them not pay taxes but get all the benifits of living in a state where everyone else pays their way? Is paying your own way racist? You must pay taxes? Uh oh you must be a rasist also? Hmmm

As a matter of fact I have lived in Mexico and South America among other countries. And I’m not a proponent of illegal immigration per se. I am for a fair policy – one that doesn’t take a lifetime, one that doesn’t deport children by mistake. If we weren’t so busy running illegal wars, maybe we could get our own affairs in order.

THANK YOU BROOK!! I gave you a thumbs up on that one! If people reply with a thought, then we can see that we aren’t as far apart on this as it may seem.

Yes I to don’t want to see children caught in the middle. And YES I am all about fairness. That is why I wonder why we let in so many more hispanics etc. but we don’t let in near a fraction of any other nationality. Fair? Or the fact that my ancestors on both sides of family as most others, came into the country through proper channels. Again from south of the border illegal. Fair?

The burdon that not getting those tax dollars puts on the system. Fair?

Yes these are my points. I’m not a racist. Actually have a great respect for many Mexicans here that work long hours for little pay, at jobs most of us won’t do.

I would just like to see the U.S. stop dragging this on and finally put some kind of system in place to deal with this on going problem.

Might be worth knowing that a large part of the problem with the economy in Greece is the traditional reluctance of Greeks to pay their taxes. Kind of like Libertarians, TPers and 1%ers.

Please….move to Texas. You’ll fit right in.

Just avoid Austin.

“Just avoid Austin”. Absolutely! Got to second that!


Sally, you, as many others in this forum, refuse to actually READ to be able to gain facts before you remove one of your feet to insert the other! It’s comical to watch your kind continually stepping in the proverbial poo!

I am tired of your type, therefore, I am not even going to show you what to read to regain a modicum of enlightenment. Continue to be ignorant, this is a prerequisite to moving to the ungodly state of Texas! Send us a post card upon your arrival.

I suggest you head back to Texas if you’re so unhappy here.

My motto again: Give em Texas!


The 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center killed 2,751 people.

In 2011, it has been estimated that more than 45,000 people died due to the lack of health insurance, according to the American Journal of Public Health. ( listed on page 6 on the link below ) deaths/health-insurance-and-mortality-in-US-adults.pdf

Where was the outraged horror that sixteen times as many people died because they lacked health care insurance in 2011? Will there be yearly memorials for these needlessly lost deaths, as there is with the World Trade Center Memorial? Will Faux News cover this per annum with the latest death figures?! I don’t think so! LOL

Healthcare is a right, not a privilege!

Article 25 of the U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948) reads (emphasis mine):

“Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the HEALTH AND WELL BEING OF HIMSELF AND OF HIS FAMILY, including food, clothing, housing AND MEDICAL CARE and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, SICKNESS, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.”

Does Article 25 of the above U.N. Declaration ring true regarding our current economy, barring the reasons why we’re in such a mess?! Sure it does. Before you start to disparage the U.N., don’t forget that the U.S. is a signatory party to this organization and has to hold true to article 25. But why don’t they follow this edict???!

Furthermore, if you’re an “assumed” Christian, and you don’t accept the above FACTS, then you don’t have enough sense to feel embarrassed! But, this post will still get many “dislikes” from this faction, along with others, and this shows without a doubt that these people just don’t care about their fellow human beings, but only of themselves. I am sure that you people make Jesus sick to his stomach relative to His TRUE Teachings! You people are a joke!

Ted, Ted, Ted… pleae remember that your ‘savior’ and benefactor..Jesus Christ, DIED on the cross…FALSLEY ACCUSED, by a bunch of CONSERVATIVE HEELOTS that were his earthly enemies.

Christ’s earthly enemies were not far removed from the current eartly enemies of human existance.

CHRIST’S enemies demanded TRIBUTE here to escape future damnation.


Jesus, the CHRIST ..REFUTED THEM ! Told these SHYSTERS that they were FULL of ( POOPOO ).

And HE Was RIGHT !

Just be careful, Brother Ted…as these vicious Conservatives and Republicans would DO the same to YOU : CRUCIFY YOU…simply because you challenge their small minds !

Brother Slowerfaster,

As any TRUE Christian knows, it was the Jews who killed our Jesus the Christ! But, you always have the ignorant pseudo-christian that says that it was the Romans! LOL!!!

But, what are you going to do with these assumed Christians when they only have their bibles read to them on Sunday mornings, which is NOT the true Sabbath to begin with?!

“Consistency requires you to be as ignorant today as you were a year ago.”

Bernard Berenson

The problem I see with universal healthcare is that I am in the same pool as fat, smoking, non-helmeted motorcycle riders who have unprotected sex.

Yes, private insurance is expensive. Even though they elect not to insure high-risk groups.

Just think how much more expensive it’s going to be when the insurance company has to take all the high risks that the currently can avoid.

What I am inarticulately leading toward is if I have to pay for healthcare for all, then I want “all” to meet me halfway and discontinue their risky activities that increase my premium. “All” need to prove it is taking some modicum of care for its health and well being before expecting me to cover the costs of “all’s” stupid lifestyle choices.

I can understand your point. On the other hand in other countries that have universal health care their citizens are actually healthier. In some countries the docs are given incentives to practice preventitive health care, I feel that this is very important. Preventive health care actually drives costs down. People are healthier when they feel free to go to the doc for regular check ups and are able to get screenings. For example, if a women gets her mammograms done every year as recommended after the age of 40 then the chance of spotting breast cancer goes up and therefore is caught before getting too bad (generally). A simple lumpectomy is much cheaper than a total mastectomy and long hospital stays same goes for colonoscopies and other tests that should be done on a regular basis but people aren’t doing these things because of the cost.

Currently in California and for many years now, insurance companies have had to by law cover even high risk people. So as it is they are forced to cover us now (I’m considered high risk). How they get around that is that they charge us an arm and a leg. The real scam is that I’m not really a high risk, this is just an excuse to charge more. My doc told me that this practice of declaring so many of us as ‘high risk’ is quite common. By having govt. health care they would have no reason to label me as high risk. Of course there will be people that live high risk lifestyles but it evens out in the long run IMO.

WOW ! …racket !!! Just WOW: How many constituencies do you care to insult and offend ?

Just for your information…do you know what demographic comprises the largest group that uses health services, and takes up the most dollars in costs ?


So I SUGGEST to you, that BEFORE YOU become a burden and expensive to the rest of us…YOU remove yourself voluntarily…in order to fit the philosophy of whatever it is you so dislike.

Lifestyle CHOICES should have featured more prominently in my assessment above.

You can’t choose to stay fit/healthy forever; but you can more or less opt out of lung cancer, high blood pressure, adult-onset diabetes, many head traumas, most social diseases, etc., by changing your lifestyle.

If you want me to pay your health insurance premiums, I want you to endeavor to be healthy.

A socialized medical system cannot keep track of all that stuff. Forget it, it’s not possible.

A free market in which each takes responsibility for his own care will work. Only you can keep track of everything you do, or know what is best for you.

A Single Payer program would likely remove the high-risk folks from the private insurers rolls. But not to worry – the insurance companies will find another excuse to charge you sufficiently to assure your “exceptional person” status.

I think you’re misunderstanding me.

I have absolutely no love for the insurance companies. However, I fear any program that removes “the invisible hand” or capitalism from the equation. The government does nothing cheaper, and without being allowed to discriminate between people who choose health and people who do not, the healthful will be subsidizing the unhealthful.

I repeat, I have no love for the insurance companies. I do not trust or like them. Same can be said for the government. So, a government run insurance company is twice as distasteful in my not-humble opinon.

I don’t think I’m misunderstanding you. You present yourself as being concerned only with your own needs. That could be the result of naivete or willfullness on your part.

You don’t seem to be as concerned with the real free-loaders you subsidize

year in and year out.

If I were you, I’d be much more concerned with subsidizing the Newt Gingriches and Darryl Issas of this world than someone receiving medical

care through a Single Payer Plan into which that person’s taxes had been poured for his or her entire working life span.

Oh brother !

More right-wing gobble-de-gook relying on an obsolete economic theory first postulated in 1776. Now, more like a religious cult and a remnant from barely enlightened days before anti-biotics when people believed illness was caused by ‘evil spirits’, or in Calvinist retribution for not being ‘holy’ enough’ !

If Adam Smith had lived to see Robber Barons, industrialization, sweatshops; and all of the profuse panics, depressions, recessions, and other destroyers of wealth; he just might develop a different ‘theory’. He did live in an age when fortunes were built due to slavery, though, so I am quite suspect if he would change.

No he would not. He would stick with his theories more tenaciously than ever, and rightly so.

What we have to fear and loath are government monopolies.

But you cannot ask or demand that your neighbors do such things. The government might, though, and that would be tantamount to living in a police state.

Health care should be completely privatized. Then you won’t have to worry about such things.