Sunday, November 15, 2009

Obama's malpractise


Newsweek

There is an air of absurdity to what is mistakenly called "health-care reform." Everyone knows that the United States faces massive governmental budget deficits as far as calculators can project, driven heavily by an aging population and uncontrolled health costs. Recovering slowly from a devastating recession, it's widely agreed that, though deficits should not be cut abruptly (lest the economy resume its slump), a prudent society would embark on long-term policies to control health costs, reduce government spending, and curb massive future deficits. The president and his top economic advisers all say this. (Click here to follow Robert J. Samuelson ).

So, what do they do? Just the opposite. Their sweeping overhaul of the health-care system—which Congress is halfway toward enacting—would almost certainly make matters worse. It would create new, open-ended medical entitlements that would probably expand deficits and do little to suppress surging health costs. The disconnect between what Obama says and what he's doing is so glaring that most people could not abide it. The president and his allies have no trouble. But reconciling blatantly contradictory objectives requires them to engage in willful self-deception, public dishonesty, or both.[...]

6 comments :

  1. There is a corollary issue that I was just made aware of. The health care package includes a clause requiring expatriate American citizens to be taxed as well. Those expatriates who fail to pay the tax run the risk of having their U.S. citizenship revoked. At the very least, they will not be able to renew their U.S. passports.

    Sounds insane but AACI (Association of Americans and Canadians in Israel), for one, is taking it very seriously and has asked all who can to contact their Senators and Congressman to voice their opposition to this clause.

    Why should an expatriate who receives zero benefit from the package and already pays for health care in his country of residence be required to pay into the U.S. health care program?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Recipients and PublicityNovember 15, 2009 at 12:56 PM

    “HAMODIA
    Israel
    24 Cheshvan | November 11, 2009
    Page B20

    Americans in Israel Will have to Pay $1,900 for Nothing

    President Barack Obama’s Universal Health Care program, which passed in the House of Representatives, will require American citizens living outside the United Sates to pay up to $1,900 a year if they don’t have health insurance in the United States, according to American Citizens Abroad (ACA).

    Under Title 1, Subtitle D, “Shared Responsibility,” the Personal Responsibility Requirement currently states on page 28 that “Beginning in 2013, all US citizens and legal residents” will be required to purchase coverage of one of the specified types of insurance coverage.

    “This broad reference clearly includes U.S. citizens residing overseas,” says ACA. “Yet citizens who are bona fide residents in foreign countries have health coverage plans valid in the country where they reside. If they subscribe to the U.S.-specific insurance outlined in the program – which they do not need and cannot use – they will be paying twice for health insurance. If they do not participate in the U.S. program, they will be subject to an excise tax to be levied on their IRS return as defined in the bill on page 29.

    “The purpose of the excise tax is to encourage all Americans who benefit from the U.S. health program to participate in its financing. Americans residing overseas cannot benefit from the U.S. health system, so for them the excise tax is just that – a tax with no counterpart service. As per the Sept. 22 press release concerning the chairman’s markup, the maximum excise tax per family for nonparticipation is $1,900, not a negligible amount.”

    This means that Americans living in Israel and paying local health tax to cover their kupat cholim will also have to pay for American health care – even though they get no benefit from U.S. health care, ACA charges.

    ACA recommends that people write their U.S. senator in advance of the vote in the Senate. Contact details can be obtained at www.congress-merge.com

    ReplyDelete
  3. Recipients and PublicityNovember 15, 2009 at 1:04 PM

    American Citizens Abroad: The Voice of Americans Overseas

    Health care tax for Americans abroad?

    ACA is requesting all members and supporters to email, fax and/or write their Senators in support of a change in legislative language to the bill "Americas Healthy Future Act of 2009" authored by Senator Max Baucus.

    In the 16 September 2009 version of this bill there is wording which would cause great hardship on American citizens living outside the US. The wording would leave Americans overseas exposed to paying an excise tax regardless of whether they carry health insurance via overseas health providers. The purpose of the proposed excise tax is to encourage all Americans who benefit from the US health program to participate in its financing. Americans residing overseas cannot benefit from the US health system so for them the excise tax is just that -- a tax with no counter-part service. Currently the planned maximum excise tax per family for non-participation would be $1,900.

    Please help ACA to insure that Americans overseas are not unfairly taxed. Help ACA to bring this matter to the attention of the decision makers in Washington DC by writing to your representative today. Attached is a sample letter that you can use to write to your Senator. We strongly suggest that you fax your letter as this has the most immediate effect however, you may also email or hard copy mail. Visit the following website for address information on your Senator. www.congressmerge.com"

    ReplyDelete
  4. Recipients and PublicityNovember 15, 2009 at 1:06 PM

    American Citizens Abroad: The Voice of Americans Overseas

    Health care tax for Americans abroad?

    ---sample letter---

    The Honorable………
    United States Senate
    Washington, DC 20510

    September , 2009

    RE: America’s Healthy Future Act of 2009

    Dear Senator………,

    As one of your constituents who resides outside of the United States, I write you as my Senator to request that you alert Senator Baucus and the drafters of “America’s Healthy Future Act of 2009” concerning the urgent need for greater precision in the definition of those covered by the proposed legislation. In the version as released on September 16, 2009, there is wording which would inadvertently cause great hardship to American citizens living outside the United States. We hasten to bring this to your attention, so that it can be corrected early in the legislative process.

    Overseas Americas should be exempted from the requirement to participate in the U.S. health plan and as a consequence, they should also be excluded to any right to claim a tax credit available for low income families in the United States under this health legislation.

    Under Title 1, Subtitle D, “Shared Responsibility”, the Personal Responsibility Requirement currently states on page 28 that “Beginning in 2013, all U.S. citizens and legal residents” would be required to purchase coverage of one of the specified types of insurance coverage. This broad reference clearly includes U.S. citizens residing overseas. Yet citizens who are bona fide residents in foreign countries have health coverage plans valid in the country where they reside. If they subscribe to the U.S.-specific insurance outlined in the program – which they do not need and cannot use – they will be paying twice for health insurance. If they do not participate in the U.S. program, they will be subject to an excise tax to be levied on their IRS returns as defined in the bill on page 29.

    The purpose of the excise tax is to encourage all Americans who benefit from the U.S. health program to participate in its financing. Americans residing overseas cannot benefit from the U.S. health system, so for them the excise tax is just that – a tax with no counter-part service. As per the September 22nd press release concerning the chairman’s markup, the maximum excise tax per family for non-participation, is $1,900, not a negligible amount.

    (see end of letter next)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Recipients and PublicityNovember 15, 2009 at 1:07 PM

    "Proposed solution:

    A modest alteration in the present formulation would correct the legislation. Following is a suggested addition.:
    “All U.S. citizens who meet the requirements of Sec. 911(d) (1)(A) or (B) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, without regard to the tax home requirement in Sec. 911(d)(1), are exempt from any mandate to purchase insurance in the United States and are not subject to the excise tax for non-participation in a U.S. health insurance plan.”

    This modification would align the Senate bill to the "America’s Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009" (H.R. 3200) presented in the House of Representatives, which specifically exempts overseas Americans from a tax on not subscribing to a U.S. domestic health plan under Section 401 of the Act (which adds Section 59B of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986). America’s Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009 states under Part VIII – HEALTH RELATED TAXES
    Subpart A -Tax on Individuals Without Acceptable Health Care Coverage
    Section 59.B “Tax on Individuals Without Acceptable Health Coverage
    (c) Exceptions:
    (3) INDIVIDUALS RESIDING OUTSIDE UNITED STATES
    Any qualified individual (as defined in section 911(d)) (and any qualifying child residing with such individual) shall be treated for purposes of this section as covered by acceptable coverage during the period described in subparagraph (A) or (B) of section 911(d)(1), whichever is applicable."

    I thank you most sincerely for your attention to this important issue and trust that you will do all necessary to bring about the change in the text of the proposed legislation.

    Sincerely yours,
    (Your name)

    ---end sample letter---

    ReplyDelete
  6. Recipients and PublicityNovember 15, 2009 at 1:10 PM

    “HAMODIA
    Israel
    24 Cheshvan | November 11, 2009
    Page B20

    ‘Americans in Israel Will have to Pay $1,900 for Nothing’

    President Barack Obama’s Universal Health Care program, which passed in the House of Representatives, will require American citizens living outside the United Sates to pay up to $1,900 a year if they don’t have health insurance in the United States, according to American Citizens Abroad (ACA).

    Under Title 1, Subtitle D, “Shared Responsibility,” the Personal Responsibility Requirement currently states on page 28 that “Beginning in 2013, all US citizens and legal residents” will be required to purchase coverage of one of the specified types of insurance coverage.

    “This broad reference clearly includes U.S. citizens residing overseas,” says ACA. “Yet citizens who are bona fide residents in foreign countries have health coverage plans valid in the country where they reside. If they subscribe to the U.S.-specific insurance outlined in the program – which they do not need and cannot use – they will be paying twice for health insurance. If they do not participate in the U.S. program, they will be subject to an excise tax to be levied on their IRS return as defined in the bill on page 29.

    “The purpose of the excise tax is to encourage all Americans who benefit from the U.S. health program to participate in its financing. Americans residing overseas cannot benefit from the U.S. health system, so for them the excise tax is just that – a tax with no counterpart service. As per the Sept. 22 press release concerning the chairman’s markup, the maximum excise tax per family for nonparticipation is $1,900, not a negligible amount.”

    This means that Americans living in Israel and paying local health tax to cover their kupat cholim will also have to pay for American health care – even though they get no benefit from U.S. health care, ACA charges.

    ACA recommends that people write their U.S. senator in advance of the vote in the Senate. Contact details can be obtained at www.congressmerge.com ”

    ReplyDelete

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