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Saturday, August 15, 2009

College Student at Colorado Town Hall Meeting Challenges Obama to a Debate - Video 8/15/09


Here is video from President Obama's Town Hall Meeting today in Grand Junction, Colorado where a College Student challenged Obama to a direct "Oxford Style" Debate, along with asking him a question.

The student asked Obama "how in the world a private corporation" such as an Insurance Company can compete with an entity like the Federal Government who does not have to pay property taxes and is not subject to regulation?

Good question - so good in fact that Obama went on one of his patented rambling answer / non-answers that said lots of words but never really dealt directly with the question. He essentially said he would see to it that unlimited taxpayer money would not be poured into a Government Health Plan making the competition unfair.

We are all reassured with that answer, aren't we? Government won't have access to unlimited taxpayer money?

Later, Obama praised the young man for having the courage to challenge "the President" to a debate - referring to himself in the third person.

20 comments:

politicaldookie August 15, 2009 at 7:44 PM  

Excellent - Obama is a vapid chooch.

B. Johnson,  August 15, 2009 at 8:19 PM  

I'm glad to see people challenging our misguided president. But I wish that somebody would publicly challenge the president as to what constitutional authority the Oval Office and Congress are basing proposed Obamacare on.

The truth of the matter is, given the federal Constitution is silent about things like Obamacare, the 10th A. automatically reserves government power to regulate and lay taxes for such things to the states, not the Oval Office and Congress. So any such program establish by the federal government is illegal under the Constitution.

In fact, Chief Justice Marshall had established the following case precendent, now wrongly ignored, which appropriately limits the power of the feds to lay taxes.

"Congress is not empowered to tax for those purposes which are within the exclusive province of the States." --Chief Justice Marshall, GIBBONS V. OGDEN (1824)

Sadly, it is ultimately the people who are responsible for big, corrupt federal government. This is because the people have evidently not been teaching the Constitution and its history to their children for many generations. So the voters have been electing state lawmakers and federal senators who are as state sovereignty-ignorant as the voters are. Consequently state and federal leaders haven't been doing their job to protect state sovereignty.

Finally, the following link should help people understand how the people have shot themselves in the foot with big, corrupt federal government.

The 16th & 17th Amendments and the big, corrupt fed. gov.

JOA0816 August 15, 2009 at 9:58 PM  

Yes, that is the real question: Is it Constitutional? We are overdue in having a national discussion on the Tenth Amendment. Let's start it now.

JOA0816 August 15, 2009 at 9:58 PM  

Yes, that is the real question: Is it Constitutional? We are overdue in having a national discussion on the Tenth Amendment. Let's start it now.

Anonymous,  August 15, 2009 at 10:00 PM  

I didn't know that insurance companies could borrow money to pay out claims?

Anonymous,  August 15, 2009 at 10:34 PM  

He answered the question multiple times and gave a fairly in depth answer considering we don't have the implementation of the system worked out or even the final version of a bill. Saying otherwise repeatedly doesn't make it true.

Other countries have hybrid systems with a strong public health care plan and a thriving private sector. The two are not mutually exclusive; the program can be set up in a way so the public plan competes on a more or less even playing field and encourages efficiency.

The reason that medicare and medicaid are so expensive is that the people that use them are the same ones that private insurers won't touch. They require the most care and simply can't afford the premiums they would need to pay to make them profitable. If insurance companies can't discriminate against these people, the tax payers won't be stuck paying for the sick and the public plan can be self-sufficient.

jcr August 15, 2009 at 11:14 PM  

Whoops, got caught without the teleprompter. Well done to the questioner.

globeisatrocious August 15, 2009 at 11:21 PM  

Anonymous is as rambling as Barry. Here's another question - if Barry will arrange things so that the govt. competes on an equal playing field, can the govt. go out of business as the private insurers do? If all is equal, we can expect the govt. to close up shop as any private insurer, poorly run, would be expected to do.

Anonymous,  August 16, 2009 at 12:06 AM  

I'm sorry if six sentences is too long -- I'll try to keep it succinct.

No, the government can't go out of business. A public program that competes with the public sector and is mandated to be self-sufficient can. If it can't provide a product that people need, no one will use it, it's that simple.

This is unlikely because compared to government programs, private insurance is grossly inefficient in terms of overhead vs. money spent on treatment. There's a lot of subtlety to how this is calculated so the numbers vary depending on who you ask but public plans always come out ahead.

Would anyone like to address some of the points in my first comment?

Randy August 16, 2009 at 12:15 AM  

Obama couldn't answer his question except to acknowledge that the gov't run postal service can't compete with the private sector. How will the public option be any better? What he says about the public option doesn't comport with that which is contained within the House bill. Of course, he hasn't read it. A lot of us have.

Anonymous,  August 16, 2009 at 12:25 AM  

Opponents of the public option argue alternately that it will put private insurance out of business and that it will be so inefficient that it will fail depending on what is convenient at the time.

Is it too much to ask for a little logical consistency?

Randy August 16, 2009 at 12:45 AM  

Anon: I'll try.

1. He didn't answer the question.

2. While the bill isn't final the framework is and the framework (the house bill) forces employers to the publice option thereby reducing the pool of the private insurers and ultimately forcing them out of the market.

3. What other countries? Name them. You won't be able to. There are none. The government plan ALWAYS snuffs out the private players. The vagueness with which this bill is being written will result in thousands of pages of regulatory interpretation. Nothing Obama says today will be remebered in three years and government bureacrats will determine it all. Name me one significant government program that doesn't grow like a virus once enacted!

4. Wrong. Private companies insure the very same people. They provide supplemental insurance to medicare recipients. Medicare premiums and co-pays go up every year just like private plans. What you and your ilk want is a single payer plan (gov't) so that the pool can be maximized until the beneficiaries think its free and then you will have rationing. I refer you to the Canadian and Great Briton systems.

Sorry, that's the best I can do at this time of night. Obama requires that I get plenty of preventative sleep.

Randy August 16, 2009 at 1:18 AM  

Oh my! I apologize for the spelling/typing errors. Too many adult beverages earlier in the evening.

If I was a little sharper I'd probably same something along these lines....

If the gov't could create a competitive product to compete in the open market without political intervention/tinkering, I would support that effort.

Unfortunately, by it's nature, a government simply cannot and has not demonstrated anywhere, anytime an instance where this is possible or successful. Really, Obama hit it on the head. The USPS is the obvious example at an attempt to spin a government created service off into the private sector. Unfortunately, as I just read yesterday, the USPS is probably next in line for a TARP type bailout!

What this is really all about is crossing a bridge and then burning it once across. This health plan, like "cap and trade", will never do anything but grow and expand. By making all Americans dependent upon gov't largesse, the democrats will finally succeed in making every american beholding to them since they are the party of gov't.

De Toqueville(sp?) saw it 200 years ago. Surely Anon can see it today.

Anonymous,  August 16, 2009 at 1:24 AM  

1. He explained that a public plan could be set up in a way that didn't undercut private insurers and that this kind of system already exists and works in many other countries. Maybe we're watching different videos?

2. This is just wrong. HR 3200 mandates that employers either provide insurance that meets some minimal requirements or Cite the relevant section of the bill or payroll tax.

3. Also factually incorrect. The WHO ranks France's health care system as the best performing. They pay less and get better coverage and have a mixture of public and private services. I can name others - hybrid systems are quite popular.

4. A single payer system is not on the table. If health care for seniors was affordable, medicare would be unnecessary. Just try taking it away. There was a bill introduced this year to do just that and not a single person in congress voted for it. Why? Because it's an essential program.

Also, medicare premiums increase at a lower rate than private insurance.

Try again.

VinceP1974 August 16, 2009 at 2:05 AM  

Amendment V of the Constitution would prohibit the enslavement of some to pay for the insurance of others.

Steve August 16, 2009 at 9:43 AM  

Anonymous, Medicare is on its way to insolvency.
http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2008pres/03/20080325a.html
What do you have to say to that? How about the far under market fees that they pay to physicians? That is where we will head. Do you really think the brightest will go into medicine if the payback for all of their hard work is so greatly reduced?

Anonymous,  August 16, 2009 at 12:10 PM  

Anonymous talks about French healthcare system... perhaps cost is lower because it only covers LEGAL RESIDENTS OF FRANCE.

Bob-PatriotResistance August 16, 2009 at 2:18 PM  

The constitutional question is imperative. But equally important is that the entire debate is subterfuge for the real goal - a completely government-run, socialist, health care system. Here is the PROOF.

Panglos August 16, 2009 at 2:48 PM  

Obama shouldn't have answered the bogus question; he should have thrown it right back. Unfortunately, as a politician, he is prone to "selling by telling" rather than "questioning down". To wit:

Is the questioner saying that he doesn't believe that the private sector can compete with the government? [Clearly, he is.)

If that's the case, would he propose that we continue to rely on such a suboptimal system?

Bob-PatriotResistance August 16, 2009 at 9:51 PM  

Hey Panglos, we haven't had a free-market health care system for decades. See The Myth of Free Market Health Care in America.

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