Shedding a Little Light on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s (PPACA’s) Early History
Since it hit prime time five years ago, the PPACA has been emitting fraud’s foul odor. It’s touted as healthcare reform, but it doesn’t reform healthcare. Somebody nicknamed it “Obamacare,” but it’s not about “care,” and Obama neither conceived of nor wrote it.
In fact, according to Politico, Obama didn’t know much about “healthcare reform” when he began campaigning in 2007, and his ignorance showed. (Some icy strategist still decided to sell the PPACA as “Obamacare” rather than “Hillarycare,” so now we have Obama.)
I’m really, really weary of so-called “news media” companies limiting themselves to telling me what politicians say about the PPACA. I don’t put much stock in what politicians say. I want “in-for-may-shun” about the law itself.
One of my biggest questions has been, “Who wrote the PPACA?”
The standard media answer is Montana Senator Max Baucus, but senators don’t “write” laws. They hire others to do it.
CommonGroundAmerica’s (CGA’s) answer stunned me.
The PPACA sprung from an 87-page white paper “put together” in November, 2008 by Baucus’ (then) chief healthcare counsel, Liz Fowler. Before working for Baucus, Fowler was a VP at WellPoint, the country’s second-largest health insurer.
Baucus, quotes CGA, said Fowler’s white paper, “became the basis, the foundation, the blueprint from which almost all health care measures in all bills on both sides of the aisle came.”
Also according to CGA, the health insurance industry had, still has, and will continue to have every interest in seeing the PPACA written, passed and put into play.
According to Kaiser Permanente, total health insurance costs in 1980 were $286 billion. By 2010, they had increased nearly tenfold to $2.3 trillion. As the population ages, that number is expected to soar. According to federal estimates, health care costs will double in the next decade and are likely to double again by 2030, when 70 million Americans – fully 20% of the population – will be over the age of 65. Could such dire estimates have provided the health insurance industry with a powerful $10 trillion incentive to move this looming liability off their balance sheets and onto the backs of the American taxpayer?
As it turns out, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is not intended to make health insurance more affordable for the American people. It is designed to make the American people more affordable for the health insurance industry.
In short, CGA makes a solid case that the health insurance industry —
tired of decades of failed attempts to influence Congress to create a national health care plan which would immunize them from the looming trillions of dollars in liabilities they faced as the boomer generation aged, simply decided they would infiltrate Congress instead and write the legislation themselves.
That’s heavy stuff; I was skeptical, of course. I’ve read many articles that make outrageous claims.
But data at OpenSecrets back up CGA’s claims. Between 2006 and 2010, the insurance industry’s financial clout, traditionally republican property, spiked heavily in democrats’ favor. Democrats, as we all know, voted unanimously for the PPACA. OpenSecrets’ data support CGA’s claims and suggest that the health insurance industry owns the PPACA and the democrats who passed it.
OpenSecrets’ graphs show that, since 2010, insurance contributions have balanced out between the parties. (Maybe the industry knew the GOP would take the house in 2012.) Consequently, it would seem, most republicans have got over any betrayal they might’ve felt and boarded the train.
Various politicians are making assertions to the effect that defunding the PPACA will put health insurance companies back in control. Seeing as the health insurance industry already appears to have just about absolute control . . .. Well, that’s why I don’t put much stock in what politicians say.
It’d be interesting to subpoena Liz Fowler’s email for the past 10 years and learn the details about the PPACA’s birth and transformation from her 87-page white paper into the democratic party’s and Obama’s 2,600-page insurance policy. It’d be interesting to learn about the “behind-the-scenes players” — the staffers, bureaucrats, lobbyists, counselors and, finally, technical writers, editors and proofreaders — who conceived, planned, structured and wrote the PPACA. Who are they, and what can they tell us about the PPACA?
Hey NSA, we want names, email and street addresses, the email itself, and phone numbers. We want taped conversations and “golf seminar” dates. Get to it; tell us about these people because, right now, we have democrats, “ye olde guarde” republicans and Obama pimping America to their “rich insurance buddies,” and viciously, too: in the name of “helping the poor.”
To be sure, much more might be written here. But instead, I’ll encourage readers to review the “in-for-may-shun” I’ve cited and, for additional interest, research the names contained therein. Learn about Liz Fowler. Learn about Fowler’s former WellPoint co-worker, Michelle Easton, who now works at the DC firm Tarplin, Downs & Young (“specializing in strategic consulting and policy development with a particular focus on health care”). Learn about Wyoming Senator Mike Enzi’s healthcare reform plan, and Enzi’s former chief health advisor (and former WellPointer) Stephen Northrup, and the Long Term Care Pharmacy Alliance (which “supports the development and cultivation of relationships on Capitol Hill – with a focus on the committees with jurisdiction over Medicaid and Medicare programs”). Learn about WellPoint. (That is one huge company.)
These (aside from Sen. Enzi, most likely) are just a few of the people who populate the health-insurance industry subculture that—I strongly suspect and data strongly suggest—wrought the PPACA. Learn about them, and tell everybody what you’ve learned, not only at RedState—conservatives aren’t the only ones who need this information—but at other news sites, especially those left-leaning. Otherwise, this information won’t get out, and it should. After all, “the people have a right to know,” when the US government is setting them up for — How much was it again? Oh, yeah! — a ten-trillion-dollar fall.
Finally, CGA says it best:
In the meanwhile, it would be nice if certain political figures would put a stop to feigning political courage by mockingly referring to this legislation as Obamacare. Obama didn’t write it or read it and there is nothing caring about it. Call it what it is:
The Health Insurance Industry Protection Act.