Pelosi goes nuts: Villainous, immoral insurance companies are the problem
posted at 2:15 pm on July 30, 2009 by Allahpundit
Good stuff. Take one of the most unpopular politicians in America, have her go off half-cocked in a crude attempt to satisfy Democratic demands for a villain to demagogue in selling ObamaCare, then wait for the backlash. Bonus points for using the same Orwellian rhetorical device Paul Ryan called Katrina Vanden Heuvel on last night, namely, exploiting the language of competition to push one of the most anti-competitive domestic measures in American history.
For sheer comic alarmism, this is topped only by The One’s warning at last week’s presser that greedy doctors are after your tonsils. But remember, you’re the ones who are fearmongering.
“They are the villains in this,” Pelosi said of private insurers. “They have been part of the problem in a major way. They are doing everything in their power to stop a public option from happening. And the public has to know that. They can disguise their arguments any way they want, but the fact is that they don’t want the competition.”…
“It’s almost immoral what they are doing,” added Pelosi, who stood outside her office long after her press conference ended to continue speaking to reporters, even as aides tried in vain to usher her inside. “Of course they’ve been immoral all along in how they have treated the people that they insure with pre-existing conditions, you know, the litany of it all.”
Translation: Private insurers are selfishly defending themselves from a statist boondoggle that’ll likely drive them out of business and create a government monopoly. I can’t believe it’s come to this, but Yale Law prof Stephen Carter was so distressed by Democratic attacks on nefarious profit-seekers that he felt obliged to write an op-ed this morning reminding America that profits are actually a good thing:
High profits are excellent news. When corporate earnings reach record levels, we should be celebrating. The only way a firm can make money is to sell people what they want at a price they are willing to pay. If a firm makes lots of money, lots of people are getting what they want.
To the country, profit is a benefit. Record profit means record taxes paid. But put that aside. When profits are high, firms are able to reinvest, expand and hire. And profits accrue to the benefit of those who own stocks: overwhelmingly, pension funds and mutual funds. In other words, high corporate profits today signal better retirements tomorrow.
Another reason to celebrate profit is the incentive it creates. When profits can be made, entrepreneurs provide more of needed goods and services…
We want health care to be cheaper, and the for-profit health-care industry has every incentive to make it so. Supporters of the public option tout Medicare’s cost advantages over private insurance, but those are largely obtained by setting below-market reimbursement rates for medical services (meaning that private patients subsidize Medicare patients). Moreover, the costs of compliance with the hundreds of pages of Medicare regulations are also transferred to the providers, and thus, again, to private patients.
Below for your amusement, via Greg Hengler, a meeting of the minds on what must be done to rescue America from the immoral villains who are bleeding us dry by providing needed coverage. Provocative exit question via James Pethokoukis: Is ObamaCare turning into … RomneyCare?