Blue Cross Blue Shield: If Republicans kill a bailout for insurers under ObamaCare, it’ll lead to single-payer

posted at 4:01 pm on January 10, 2014 by Allahpundit

They’re nervous.

“We are becoming increasingly concerned about momentum that is quickly building among some leading conservatives for elimination of the risk corridor and reinsurance programs,” [Blue Cross Blue Shield Association CEO Scott] Serota wrote…

“Their efforts, along with growing support for repealing the risk corridor and reinsurance programs, could combine to create a perfect storm to, at a minimum, dissuade the Administration from modifying risk corridor program rules to provide increased funding in light of the recent ‘transitional policy’ allowing insurers to offer consumers the option to renew their 2013 health plans for 2014,” Serota wrote.

In attached talking points, seemingly directed at Republican lawmakers opposed to risk corridors and reinsurance, BCBSA is asking members to argue that eliminating the risk corridors will lead to the eventual downfall of Obamacare and lead to a single-payer system: “It jeopardizes the entire private health insurance market and will ultimately lead to a single-payer system. Furthermore, it will close the door to pro-competitive health care reform alternatives.”

One bolded talking point, “use with appropriate audiences only,” charges that “eliminating these programs will result in massive premium increases and could cause private insurers to become insolvent.” In Serota’s email, however, this point is intended for Democrats only.

You remember the “risk corridor” provisions, right? If a new ObamaCare plan comes in under budget, the insurer pays the difference between the actual cost and projected cost to HHS. If it comes in over budget, HHS pays the difference to the insurance. It’s a way for insurers to spread risk among the industry with HHS as middleman. (The bit in the excerpt about the White House modifying the rules for its new “transitional policy” is a reference to this.) Problem is, there’s no cap on how much HHS might need to pay out if lots and lots of plans come in over budget — a plausible scenario given the whispers from Humana about what it’s seeing among the demographic mix of ObamaCare enrollees so far. If too many plans have lopsided numbers of sick enrollees who need expensive treatments and few healthy ones to supply the revenue needed to offset that expense, HHS could be on the hook for the shortfall via a de facto bailout — unless Congress repeals the risk corridor provisions, in which case the insurers will be stuck with the bill. How many of them will be able to cover it and how many will go belly up? Of the ones who stay in business, how many will have to charge exorbitant premiums next year to make up for their losses? And if premiums soar, some portion of their consumers are bound to cancel their plans, which means even less revenue for the insurers and the need for even higher premiums, etc. That’s the “death spiral,” and in theory that’s where single-payer comes in. If the insurance industry melts down because Congress cut its financial lifeline, what replaces it?

What’s fascinating about the BCBS talking points is that, in light of the rumblings on the left lately about single-payer, they may actually hurt the industry at this point more than they help. The “single-payer” talk won’t scare Republicans; they know they’re likely to have more control of Congress next year, not less, and they’re eager to find a weak spot in the Jenga tower that is ObamaCare that might bring the whole thing down. Killing the risk corridor could do it. Meanwhile, the “single-payer” talk might entice Democrats. Plenty of them, like Michael Moore and Noam Scheiber, defend ObamaCare not out of love but out of dutiful partisan obligation. They hate insurance companies and would leap at the chance to replace them with a government alternative but they’re stuck with the O-Care model for the time being. If the industry implodes, though, they’ll have a fully-formed alternative ready to go in the form of “Medicare for all.” And of course, as a matter of basic retail politics, Democrats want to be seen as anti-bailout as much as Republicans do, especially before a midterm election. Even assuming that Obama would veto a bailout repeal in the name of protecting his new partners in the industry, there’ll be intense political pressure on Democrats to cross the aisle and vote with the GOP to override it. I don’t think they’d get to 67 votes — the wound to ObamaCare, on which they’ve already spent so much political capital, would be too grave to inflict it so soon — but the politics of it would be attractive and we already know that they’re not averse to short-sighted political “fixes” to the law that actually make the industry’s adverse-selection problems worse. Between nervous red-state centrists like Mark Pryor who want to signal their unhappiness with O-Care and ideological leftists like Bernie Sanders who want to smash the insurance industry, how many Democratic votes might they get? Enough to get to 60 and force an Obama veto at least, right?

Exit question via Bob Laszewski: What happens when the “risk corridor” expires in 2017? Exit answer: Maybe nothing. By that point, U.S. health insurance will be so dominated by the exchanges and the penalty for not complying with the mandate will be so steep that you’ll have no choice but to sign up and pay what they want.


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I’ll take our chances, you were too scared to be public enemy one and that you left us out on the streets fighting alone.

rob verdi on January 10, 2014 at 4:03 PM

Long concertina and kliegs.

Murphy9 on January 10, 2014 at 4:06 PM

Crap. Crap.
You went along with obamacare, you figure out a way to circumvent the law like Obama.

AllahsNippleHair on January 10, 2014 at 4:09 PM

Technically they’re right. Obviously if the insurers go the way of the dodo, there’s nothing left but the government to step in. But that’s not going to become the norm because that’ll be unacceptable to a majority of Americans. I don’t care what your political leanings are, you don’t want your health coverage being provided by the same bureaucracy that runs the DMV(and couldn’t launch a freaking website with a billion dollars and 3 1/2 years of prep).

Doughboy on January 10, 2014 at 4:09 PM

Blue Cross Blue Shield: If Republicans kill a bailout for insurers under ObamaCare, it’ll lead to single-payer

…versus…eventually…putting EVERY industry…on the public tit?
…farm bill…green energy bill…bill…bill…bill

KOOLAID2 on January 10, 2014 at 4:10 PM

and they’re eager to find a weak spot in the Jenga tower that is ObamaCare that might bring the whole thing down.

The Vichy GOP? LOL.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on January 10, 2014 at 4:10 PM

At least this confirms what people have been saying, the risk pool in the exchanges suck. Otherwise why would they be nervous?

ojfltx on January 10, 2014 at 4:10 PM

To Hell with all the ins. and medical device companies which stood with obama, doctors who did too.

NO exceptions. May you all go under.

Schadenfreude on January 10, 2014 at 4:11 PM

One bolded talking point, “use with appropriate audiences only,” charges that “eliminating these programs will result in massive premium increases and could cause private insurers to become insolvent.” In Serota’s email, however, this point is intended for Democrats only.

It sounds like Blue Shield Blue Cross’s Serota is more concerned with his political party than he is with anything else.

His threats are described as focused on “Conservatives…within the Republican” party while he’s directing “special” information only to Democrats.

Why not dump Obamacare altogether? Was there some “threat to private insurance industry” PRIOR TO Obamacare?

So why not dump the entire fiasco, all parts, all aspects?

Lourdes on January 10, 2014 at 4:11 PM

STFU, BCBS.

You wanted this mess, live with the mess. Stop thinking you have a right to slip your hands inti my pockets to save your sorry asses.

Bitter Clinger on January 10, 2014 at 4:11 PM

BS – we know the Dems want to get to single payer anyway.
But you insurance companies went along with the Dems when they were building this crap sandwich – so eat what you helped make.

dentarthurdent on January 10, 2014 at 4:11 PM

*into

Bitter Clinger on January 10, 2014 at 4:12 PM

No one is forcing them not to sell outside the exchanges. The only difference are the subsidies. They will not go bankrupt. Obamacare is. They can always pull out of the exchanges as well. Am I wrong here?

ojfltx on January 10, 2014 at 4:12 PM

They fluke you.

Then they get fluked.

Then they say “If you don’t accept to bail us out we’ll fluke you even more”

Go to Hell, you charlatans.

Schadenfreude on January 10, 2014 at 4:13 PM

Blue Cross Blue Shield: If Republicans kill a bailout for insurers under ObamaCare, it’ll lead to single-payer

Well, duh. Of course it will. So will bailing them out.

We have made a major strategic error in trying to delay the bad effects of Obamacare.

Bring it on. Let us hit the wall. Have the People become so dumbed down they don’t understand single payer is how the Soviets did things? Have the People decided that is the better way to do things after all?

Let’s find out now. If the People are not completely corrupted, and they decide to reject single payer, going back to having a market pricing mechanism will be rough, but we will have learned an important lesson.

fadetogray on January 10, 2014 at 4:13 PM

When the risk corridors were established, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) scored the program as “budget neutral,” meaning that it was likely there would be just as many insurance companies who overestimated the costs of implementing ObamaCare as those who underestimated them.

But then……

the Obama administration moved to allow the hundreds of thousands of Americans who lost their coverage to sign up for bare-bones “catastrophic” plans, it marked “at least the 14th unilateral CHANGE to Obamacare that’s been made without consulting Congress.”

In other words, due to the lawlessness of the Obama administration, all of those ostensibly budget-neutral calculations have been kicked to the curb.

Now……

The light you see isn’t the end of the tunnel. It’s the Train roaring straight at you.

roflmmfao

donabernathy on January 10, 2014 at 4:14 PM

At least this confirms what people have been saying, the risk pool in the exchanges suck. Otherwise why would they be nervous?

ojfltx on January 10, 2014 at 4:10 PM

BSBC reveals it’s hand intrinsically and politically involved in Obamacare.

The disaster that is Obamacare and all it’s awful liabilities, pruned or not without being eliminated, is the responsibility of EVERY participant who made it happen. That includes BSBC.

And haven’t policies already gone up terribly? NOW BCBS is threatening a big rise in costs for policies? What about what’s already occured?

Lourdes on January 10, 2014 at 4:14 PM

No one is forcing them not to sell outside the exchanges. The only difference are the subsidies. They will not go bankrupt. Obamacare is. They can always pull out of the exchanges as well. Am I wrong here?

ojfltx on January 10, 2014 at 4:12 PM

But pulling out of the exchanges will cost them potentially millions of new customers. They’ve backed themselves into a corner here. They have to basically do whatever Obama tells them or he’s threatened to exclude them from the exchanges. Plus if they bail out now, they won’t get bailed out by the government if/when it becomes necessary.

Them’s the breaks when you sign a deal with the devil.

Doughboy on January 10, 2014 at 4:15 PM

Anyone have any doubts now that BC/BS will share ALL of your medical info with the feds if you criticize the government — whether you went through the exchanges or not? Just like the federal government, BC/BS now sees their own customers as the enemy, because they really only have one customer — the federal government. They deserve whatever hell comes their way.

Rational Thought on January 10, 2014 at 4:16 PM

Well, this is the ultimate goal of the administration, isn’t it? In their eyes, all is going as planned at this point.

Static21 on January 10, 2014 at 4:17 PM

Blue Cross Blue Shield: If Republicans kill a bailout for insurers under ObamaCare, it’ll lead to single-payer

“Single payer” … LOL. The feral government has already taken over most of the actual administration of private health insurance, with the stranglehold only to get tighter every year. If BarkyCare stays there will be worse than “single payer”, there will be “single administrator – and that single administrator will be despicable, lying scumbag politicians who can’t run anything and are motivated by nothing but the worst humans have to offer.

Everyone knew all this before BarkyCare was illegally shoved through and ridiculously upheld in the SCOTASS. BCBS and the insurance companies went along with becoming nothing more than agents for the feral government and infringing on all citizens’ rights. Now, they are trying to further extort the populace they so abused with terroristic threats. They are slime. They all need to be jailed – first and foremost, Barky, his junta and but also all the slimeballs that helped push this un-Constitutional POS on us, which includes the insurance companies that supported this offensive attack on our rights and our persons.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on January 10, 2014 at 4:18 PM

If Republicans kill a bailout for insurers under ObamaCare, it’ll lead to single-payer

How is this different than the government bailing out the industry? Tax payers get it in the shorts no matter what.

tommer74 on January 10, 2014 at 4:18 PM

Blue Cross Blue Shield: If Republicans kill a bailout for insurers under ObamaCare, it’ll lead to single-payer

Sure, but my question is how is BCBS and the other insurance Corporate Fascist organs going to rake in even greater profits through single-payer? Finder’s fee for helping corral just about everyone into this new Ponzi scheme? “Consulting”? Administrating on behalf of the Politburo? All of the above? What exactly?

Dr. ZhivBlago on January 10, 2014 at 4:19 PM

What happens when the “risk corridor” expires in 2017? Exit answer: Maybe nothing. By that point, U.S. health insurance will be so dominated by the exchanges and the penalty for not complying with the mandate will be so steep that you’ll have no choice but to sign up and pay what they want.

What happens if the US citizens vote out of office every single elected official who has made Obamacare possible?

No wonder BSBC is targeting “Conservatives.” They’re admitting that they want harms — that’s what’s involved in this Serota statement, an implication of a wish or hope for harms upon Conservatives, harms by way of identifying Conservatives as their opponent in assisting Obamacare — upon others.

This is a very nasty fight for the soul of this nation. I don’t know why insurers have aligned with this mess as they have but it’s a bad, bad statement about those insurers who have.

Lourdes on January 10, 2014 at 4:20 PM

We don’t have to kill the risk corridor.

We just use it to beat the Democrats over the head with in the midterms. After the 2008 bail out, no one is in favor of another bail out.

dforston on January 10, 2014 at 4:21 PM

I have news for you/them.

Blue Cross Blue Shield is full of revolving door ‘consultants’ and lobbyists. They move from the gov’t to the blues, and back, get paid literal fortunes, come up with whatever processes/procedures, which the gov’t always accepts as de rigeur.

Go to Hell all of you at the blues and in the gov’t. YOU are all crooks who rob the producers blind.

Schadenfreude on January 10, 2014 at 4:22 PM

Here’s an interesting idea: Republicans suggest to BCBS that after 2016, a Republican president could negotiate a treaty with, say, Canada, to allow foreign-based insurance companies to sell health plans effective anywhere in the US at market rates, with no state or local controls.

PersonFromPorlock on January 10, 2014 at 4:22 PM

Only one way out of this stinkin’ cr@p hole…Total repeal! And, only one way for that to happen, Ocare has to fall so hard that even the DemocRATS that voted for it will have to start screaming “uncle!” No Insurance Bailout, Period!

The big insurance companies that got in bed with this may suffer some wounds, but if we open up the free market for health care, everyone will survive. If the POS socialists thought Ocare was a great door to Single Payer, they were mistaken. The one lesson that the uniformed low information voters have now learned is what we have been telling them for the past five years, Socialism does not work!

texgal on January 10, 2014 at 4:24 PM

If the GOP doesn’t win big in 2014/16, they will go the way of the Whigs…..

nazo311 on January 10, 2014 at 4:24 PM

By that point, U.S. health insurance will be so dominated by the exchanges and the penalty for not complying with the mandate will be so steep that you’ll have no choice but to sign up and pay what they want.

Only if you are a slave to the state.

Schadenfreude on January 10, 2014 at 4:24 PM

Single payer kills the private insurance industry and our economy.

Let. It. Burn.

Going back to paying doctors out of pocket would be the very best thing that could happen to us.

jukin3 on January 10, 2014 at 4:25 PM

How is this different than the government bailing out the industry? Tax payers get it in the shorts no matter what.

tommer74 on January 10, 2014 at 4:18 PM

It isn’t. “Risk corridor provisions” sound better than the B-word, though.

Bitter Clinger on January 10, 2014 at 4:26 PM

F’em. They were happy to screw us all when they thought they would profit from it. They can go straight to hell.

jawkneemusic on January 10, 2014 at 4:26 PM

before BarkyCare was illegally shoved through and ridiculously upheld in the SCOTASS. BCBS and the insurance companies went along with becoming nothing more than agents for the feral government and infringing on all citizens’ rights. Now, they are trying to further extort the populace they so abused with terroristic threats. They are slime. They all need to be jailed – first and foremost, Barky, his junta and but also all the slimeballs that helped push this un-Constitutional POS on us, which includes the insurance companies that supported this offensive attack on our rights and our persons.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on January 10, 2014 at 4:18 PM

Now, they are trying to further extort the populace they so abused with terroristic threats.

I agree with that. It’s hideous and just awful, words fail here, as to what BSBC is saying through Serota. His statements are a call to harm others (“Conservatives…Republicans”).

This along with Pelosi’s recent declaration that people who refuse Obamacare “should be jailed”.

Is that “jail” or some sort of “camp” she has in mind? BSBC’s statement is terrifying to me. Not that I’m expressing fear of them so much as I express fear at their hideous political effort to hammer/harm others.

Lourdes on January 10, 2014 at 4:26 PM

Exit question via Bob Laszewski: What happens when the “risk corridor” expires in 2017? Exit answer: Maybe nothing. By that point, U.S. health insurance will be so dominated by the exchanges and the penalty for not complying with the mandate will be so steep that you’ll have no choice but to sign up and pay what they want.

More likely, if PlaceboCare hasn’t already been morphed into single-payer, it will morph into it as even with the enforced mandatory sign-ups, insurance companies won’t be able to survive without the subsidies.

Steve Eggleston on January 10, 2014 at 4:26 PM

Holy crap folks! I can’t wait til the federal government decides your heavily-state-regulated industry is evil, passes laws it cannot properly implement to further regulate you, outlaws nearly every product you offer and makes you jump through flaming hoops to get the new products approved, changes the rules arbitrarily and expects immediate and sometimes even retroactive compliance, and then some ignorant dopes on the internet say your industry deserves to go bankrupt because you busted your ass to comply with the law and stay in business instead of pissing in the political wind. Nice. I expected better from this group.

CantCureStupid on January 10, 2014 at 4:27 PM

It looks like Walmart will fill the gap.

And of course, insurers who sold their integrity will go broke but there will be new ventures with creative solutions.

It is inevitable becasue doctors will not sign up as slaves.

Lonetown on January 10, 2014 at 4:28 PM

“The moon is an orbital albino, and it gets tons of sunlight, so I propose Operation Sunscreen, where astronauts coat the surface of the moon with a protective layer of sunscreen. If you care about albinos and the environment, you’ll see this is a good idea. And hey, it’s a better use of taxpayer funds”

-Jarod Kintz

roflmmfao

donabernathy on January 10, 2014 at 4:28 PM

What kind of nonsense is this?

Repeal BOTH ends of the corridor and allow the insurers to only cover THE COSTS (not the services therein) that HHS mandates. That pushes services costs down to the people where it belongs and restores the entire concept of the actuary market.

If this kills BCBS this doesn’t lead to sidle later anyway… It means people can just contract directly with their hospital and doctor (wotta concept!)

Skywise on January 10, 2014 at 4:29 PM

“if you like risk corridors you can keep risk corridors”. another obamacare lie-also to insurers

gerrym51 on January 10, 2014 at 4:29 PM

Going back to paying doctors out of pocket would be the very best thing that could happen to us.

jukin3 on January 10, 2014 at 4:25 PM

I agree. But then the Democrats would have so many of their voters crying for someone to “provide” them with (name the resource here).

And unless Congress does something to alter the open-door, “must treat” requirement for emergency rooms nationwide, all those people who don’t want to pay Doctors out of pocket will be in ERs, not that they aren’t already.

The ‘walk-in’ “must treat” law that applies to ERs is the cause of all of this: hospitals, then insurers, then government, are all trying to curtail the huuuge financial losses caused by “the uninsured” using ERs as clinics — and many of them never pay their bills.

Lourdes on January 10, 2014 at 4:29 PM

On the exchange in Kalifornia there was tons of competition. You could have BCBS or you could choose from BCBS. It is single payer here now.

But you know what could fix all of this? Amnesty.

jukin3 on January 10, 2014 at 4:30 PM

Yeh, because we held a fu<king gun to your heads and made you participate on the exchange.

Hill60 on January 10, 2014 at 4:30 PM

I think everyone is looking at this from the wrong angle…

If HHS is obligated to bail out insurers as required by law, that IN NO WAY requires taxpayers to bail out HHS. I say let the trainwreck of Obamacare drain HHS of every last dollar until it is left as a husk twisting in the political winds, and serve as a reminder of what happens when politicians intervene where they should not tread.

This would not result in single payer. This would result in the death of HHS. And strangely, I support this!

dominigan on January 10, 2014 at 4:32 PM

Allah – is this the Blues association? The biggest Blues franchisee is Wellpoint/Anthem. WHat do they say?

BCBS in Michigan is essentially a UAW subsidiary. Those insurers with a private business side will survive – may even prosper as the public exchange’s prices go through the roof.

Zomcon JEM on January 10, 2014 at 4:32 PM

The people who forked up 0bamacare are going to be totally trusted to set up a single-payer system. Okay, I couldn’t keep a straight face even typing that last sentence.

Sekhmet on January 10, 2014 at 4:33 PM

In attached talking points, seemingly directed at Republican lawmakers opposed to risk corridors and reinsurance, BCBSA is asking members to argue that eliminating the risk corridors will lead to the eventual downfall of Obamacare and lead to a single-payer system: “It jeopardizes the entire private health insurance market and will ultimately lead to a single-payer system. Furthermore, it will close the door to pro-competitive health care reform alternatives.”

WHY does it immediately go to single payer automatically? Because our miserable louse of a president has said he wants single payer and that he wouldn’t be able to do it overnight. There’s congress. And the court.
Unless I need to get my pitchfork out of storage.
Obamacare fails, reinstate the previously working insurance healthcare system.

AllahsNippleHair on January 10, 2014 at 4:33 PM

On the exchange in Kalifornia there was tons of competition. You could have BCBS or you could choose from BCBS. It is single payer here now.

But you know what could fix all of this? Amnesty.

jukin3 on January 10, 2014 at 4:30 PM

Heh. It’s the Democrats’ way: whatever the problem is, make it so much worse that it ruins everyone. Everyone except the dutiful Democrat Party voters.

Lourdes on January 10, 2014 at 4:33 PM

The people who forked up 0bamacare are going to be totally trusted to set up a single-payer system. Okay, I couldn’t keep a straight face even typing that last sentence.

Sekhmet on January 10, 2014 at 4:33 PM

Heh. :)

Lourdes on January 10, 2014 at 4:34 PM

Say, if all the insurers don’t offer insurance, then you can’t enforce a mandate to get insurance!

Why, that is a SOLUTION to the ‘problem’!

With no one insuring, with no ability to coerce you to buy something that doesn’t EXIST, the government loses all its power to make you do ANYTHING in the way of ‘health care’. It can ‘penalize’ and ‘tax’ all it wants, but it cannot penalize you to get something that isn’t there nor tax you on something that doesn’t exist to be purchased.

At that point the entire health insurance system implodes into a black hole, taking all coverage with it.

Then the entire set of tax loopholes, kickbacks, subsidies via the tax code for employers… all of that… the whole kit’n’kaboodle goes away.

And no one can sell the idea that the GOVERNMENT knows BETTER than the people it just destroyed who were the EXPERTS in this area.

If that is the best the insurance companies can do, they need to fall on their swords and take the disaster they endorsed.

Thank you for being crony idiots.

Your check will not be in the mail.

ajacksonian on January 10, 2014 at 4:35 PM

Technically they’re right. Obviously if the insurers go the way of the dodo, there’s nothing left but the government to step in. But that’s not going to become the norm because that’ll be unacceptable to a majority of Americans.
Doughboy on January 10, 2014 at 4:09 PM

I might be pessimistic but I disagree. The majority is at the point (or rapidly approaching it) where they will trade freedoms, liberty and choice for safety and peace. If the insurance industry is in a death spiral and the statists can paint the situation with enough FUD, Americans will be clamoring for an easier, simpler and safer system. It’ll be single-payer, but they won’t call it that.
Besides, once the insurance industry is fully burdened and constrained by ZeroCare rules and regulations, the average American won’t be able to tell the difference between them and single-payer anyway.

Marcola on January 10, 2014 at 4:35 PM

Obamacare! Pajama Boy! Shovel ready! 57 States! Promise Zones! Focused like a laser, not resting until…Austrian! Hey, Hope and Change, let’s move!

Lourdes on January 10, 2014 at 4:36 PM

Hey John, call their bluff. Kill the risk corridor.

DanMan on January 10, 2014 at 4:36 PM

I think BCBS already has it’s Customer Service based in Mexico. If you complain to them about anything, ask for a Supervisor, you either get waited-out by extensive “hold” or you get a guy who responds to your complaint with, “we don’t care.”

Lourdes on January 10, 2014 at 4:37 PM

Sure, but my question is how is BCBS and the other insurance Corporate Fascist organs going to rake in even greater profits through single-payer? Finder’s fee for helping corral just about everyone into this new Ponzi scheme? “Consulting”? Administrating on behalf of the Politburo? All of the above? What exactly?

Dr. ZhivBlago on January 10, 2014 at 4:19 PM

Just like the GM bail-out…..

Top health insurance execs go to work for the Feds and get golden parachutes.

The companies are “sold” to the government and then all those employees
who stay become federal unionized employees.

Then the hospitals get “sold” to the government and private doctors are locked
out of the system, some only surviving by paying customers. But by then
the federal intervention will be so great that most doctors will comply
and also go to work for the government.

Then that is it…..

The next thing Obama will nationalize are those “fracking” oil companies…..

The only way to prevent this will be messy and prolonged.

Are you ready?

redguy on January 10, 2014 at 4:38 PM

Anecdote re single-payer: I was speaking with a social worker today; Female, Jewish, Pikesville, MD (Baltimore suburb) – the prototypical Democrat in Maryland. She mentioned the number of people not going into the healthcare field because of Obamacare.

If the meager (compared to single-payer) expansion of Medicaid is already effecting those either already in -or in school to enter the medical field, than I don’t think single-payer is going to be what these commies think it’ll be.

BKeyser on January 10, 2014 at 4:38 PM

Couldn’t care less what happens to all the supporters of ObamaCare, including BCBS or people like Republican Governor John Kasich in Ohio, who promised to fight ObamaCare when his election opponent had the NRA endorsement but is now supporting Medicaid expansion and O-Care.

With Obama unable to enforce the law without sustaining political losses in November, there is no possibility that he will do anything to get a more comprehensive piece of socialized medicine through Congress. Tens of millions now know the president lied about keeping your plan or doctor if you like it or them.

The PPACA is all that the Democrats are ever going to get. A comprehensive system of socialized medicine is not a political possibility today. There is no money for it – even with the Federal Reserve counterfeiting machine. There is no political support for it now. There is a bad taste in the mouths of millions of voters regarding ObamaCare. People I know that were outspoken about supporting it – now cringe when they are reminded of their folly. No Democrat is going to campaign on a platform of replacing ObamaCare with a single-payer system. Few people, now, are dumb enough or willfully ignorant enough, to want their health care in the hands of incompetent, sit-in-judgement, self-important, time-serving-drone bureaucrats.

Falcon46 on January 10, 2014 at 4:39 PM

Of course they’re nervous. Panicked.

BCBS played along with the fascists in the Democrat party, and depended on those cronies to put their industry in a “no-lose” position where all citizens, by law (!!) had to be customers, all risk was constrained by government fiat (aka Death Panels or IPAB) and profits were guaranteed. Presto!! Country club memberships for everyone,

Now the scumbags are faced with the downside of being a government pet. The opposition.

Single payer is never going to happen, now that close to an absolute majority wants Obamacare repealed, and the government to have less involvement in health insurance. BCBS just might as well dust off the “How To Make A Profit” guidebook, because they will need it.

MTF on January 10, 2014 at 4:49 PM

Blue Cross?!? Man, they’ve fallen a long way from being the Baylor Plan founded here in Dallas in 1929, to insure teachers an up to 21-day hospital stay for $6 a year. Shaking my head.

Ward Cleaver on January 10, 2014 at 4:50 PM

Few people, now, are dumb enough or willfully ignorant enough, to want their health care in the hands of incompetent, sit-in-judgement, self-important, time-serving-drone bureaucrats.

Bwahahahahahahahahahaha

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tpAOwJvTOio

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bs23CjIWMgA

Like cockroaches there are hundreds of millions of them

roflmmfao

donabernathy on January 10, 2014 at 4:50 PM

Obviously if the insurers go the way of the dodo, there’s nothing left but the government to step in.

Meadow muffins…

All the current Insurance Companies could go bankrupt tomorrow and if the government got out of the way, new ones would spring up over night.

The problem with healthcare in the U.S. is and has been the Insurance companies. If there was “real” competition, it would be grand, but the companies have “bought” Congress over the years to build the mess. Then What-Ever-His-Name-Really-Is just gave them a true monopoly.

CrazyGene on January 10, 2014 at 4:50 PM

Sounds like the same reasons we bailed out GM (unions), Chrysler (ditto), and the Banks (Wall Street). And let’s not forget the Stimulus (teachers unions).

I say, let’s see what happens when something too big to fail, fails. I’m in.

MikeinPRCA on January 10, 2014 at 4:52 PM

Obamacare is an abortion for America and the insurance companies are the doctors.

fogw on January 10, 2014 at 4:53 PM

I don’t understand why BCBS is bothering. The “risk corridor” provision is like putting a band-aid on a sucking chest wound. Our healthcare system is falling apart. It was careening along at a hundred miles an hour, and Obamacare just pulled one of the wheels off. Vast numbers of people will suffer and die because of this monstrosity. If you’re not angry, you’re not paying attention.

ElectricPhase on January 10, 2014 at 4:55 PM

So, we’re supposed to reward the insurance industry for its feckless and corrupt endorsement of BarryCare which is driving them into insolvency, and destroying medical providers, and patients, along the way.
I say let them (the industry) die by their own hands.
Like streetcars, there will be another one by shortly to take their place – after BarryCare is repealed.
Until then, you want to see a doctor – Take Cash!

Another Drew on January 10, 2014 at 4:58 PM

CrazyGene on January 10, 2014 at 4:50 PM

All Congress has to do is to allow the buying and selling of health-care insurance in Interstate Commerce with no State Mandates.
Everything ala carte.

Another Drew on January 10, 2014 at 5:00 PM

makes you jump through flaming hoops to get the new products approved,

stay in business instead of pissing in the political wind.

CantCureStupid on January 10, 2014 at 4:27 PM

Tell me who were those hoops designed for the good of the country or the good of the company?

Next statement says it all.
Was Blue Cross concerned for it’s customers or itself.
Such champions of liberty.

MontanaMmmm on January 10, 2014 at 5:00 PM

Without the risk corridor guarantees, no insurer would have offered policies on the exchanges because of their poor design and the costly coverages mandated.

This isn’t the insurance companies’ fault, and it is not right to blame them for trying to survive. If we bankrupt them by forcing them to eat the losses the law promised to cover, the industry is dead and what do we do then?

Plus, if we go in and alter the law in such a way after it’s begun, the finger-pointing that “Republicans doomed the law” will have legs and we will bear the results of the chaos, which is stupid.

So I expect Cruz and his cultists to jump right on this. Because they are more about instant gratification than, say, planning ahead or thinking things through.

AS BEFORE, the way to kill ObamaCare is to keep hands (and fingerprints) OFF of it, it will collapse of its own weight with no one to blame but Obama – unless we give him a new target. Again.

Adjoran on January 10, 2014 at 5:02 PM

Anecdote re single-payer: I was speaking with a social worker today; Female, Jewish, Pikesville, MD (Baltimore suburb) – the prototypical Democrat in Maryland. She mentioned the number of people not going into the healthcare field because of Obamacare.

If the meager (compared to single-payer) expansion of Medicaid is already effecting those either already in -or in school to enter the medical field, than I don’t think single-payer is going to be what these commies think it’ll be.

BKeyser on January 10, 2014 at 4:38 PM

Actually, it will be exactly what they think it will be. It just won’t be what we think they’ll think it will be.

Steve Eggleston on January 10, 2014 at 5:02 PM

That is, assuming we don’t assume the worst about lieberals.

Steve Eggleston on January 10, 2014 at 5:02 PM

Republicans are to blame for the Obamacare mess? Only low information voters will buy this BS.

SC.Charlie on January 10, 2014 at 5:03 PM

will collapse of its own weight with no one to blame but Obama – unless we give him a new target. Again.

Adjoran on January 10, 2014 at 5:02 PM

How will it collapse if it keeps being propped up?

MontanaMmmm on January 10, 2014 at 5:04 PM

What these socialist/communist freaks are doing to this country and our “healthcare” is appalling. Yeah, no sh*t, single-payer. Can’t wait to get their hands on the cash, just like Social Security, and do what they think is “fair.” To hell what WE think. Wait till you see the insanity-laced OWS approach they bring to control “cost.” More like an arbitrary point system — including what they think a doctor is worth. “$35/hr. No –$30/hr. That sounds fair to me — this year.” Can’t you see the college students lining up for a piece of that action?

RobertMN on January 10, 2014 at 5:08 PM

Let the crony capitalists eat the losses.

It has to start somewhere. If they do collapse and then we get Obamacare repealed, then we get to start over with new insurance companies. Somebody will jump into the market as long as there is honest money to be made.

AUINSC on January 10, 2014 at 5:10 PM

Schadenfreude on January 10, 2014 at 4:11 PM

+10000

Scott (of BCBSA) you’re breaking my heart now that you’ve finally wised up to Obama’s plan for insurance companies. You made your own bed, sleep well my friend!! SUCKER!!

Deano1952 on January 10, 2014 at 5:13 PM

The republicans are doing this.

Yes. Obviously.

BobMbx on January 10, 2014 at 5:16 PM

Let the fascists burn in the fire they created.

gwelf on January 10, 2014 at 5:18 PM

What will happen?

Doctors will take CASH!

As for the ‘insurance industry’ – those bastards made a deal with King Barack, they can just live OR DIE with it!

GarandFan on January 10, 2014 at 5:20 PM

MontanaMmmm on January 10, 2014 at 5:00 PM

Are you kidding?? Do you even know what it takes for an insurer to comply with this steaming turd of a law? I suppose by your snide and stunningly uninformed remark you’d have more respect for the Blues and other insurers if they’d just said screw it, laid off tens of thousands of employees, and shuttered the doors as though such actions would increase your liberty, yes? That’s as stupid as vunnables thinking that tax increases on the rich will make poor people less poor.

Let me make this simple for you… the federal government profoundly changed the rules. Blaming the insurance industry for the actions of politicians is so stupid it’s breathtaking. Blue Cross is not responsible for your disappearing freedoms or for congressional malpractice. Good grief!

CantCureStupid on January 10, 2014 at 5:20 PM

Exit question via Bob Laszewski: What happens when the “risk corridor” expires in 2017? Exit answer: Maybe nothing. By that point, U.S. health insurance will be so dominated by the exchanges and the penalty for not complying with the mandate will be so steep that you’ll have no choice but to sign up and pay what they want.

I doubt that.

Americans do not like being herded. They won’t buy the insurance and they won’t pay the fines either. The government will have a massive problem on its hands if it tries to go after millions of middle-class people who refuse to buy their BS insurance. The law does not allow the IRS to bill people for the fines or put liens on them.

That’s why they are spneding millions on TV ads and “navigators” to sell this garbage. They know peple don’t want it.

rockmom on January 10, 2014 at 5:23 PM

Blue Cross Blue Shield: If Republicans kill a bailout for insurers under ObamaCare, it’ll lead to single-payer FASTER

Fixed it for them.

A bailout will only delay the inevitable. That’s what this is all about, and has been all about from the beginning, which is why the insurance companies were stupid to cooperate with it.

JannyMae on January 10, 2014 at 5:25 PM

It will be the best worlds….

The GOP will try to block the bailout and will get the votes and Obama will be forced to veto it thus handing out tax payer money to insurance companies and thus enraging his own lefty base.

Wonderful!

Alas somehow this is too easy for the GOP…McCain or someone will ride to save the day.

William Eaton on January 10, 2014 at 5:25 PM

I’m still trying to figure out how come there is not just one, single Obamacare plan for every American. What happened to fairness? Equality? Equal protection?

Obama sucks so bad he can’t even get communism right.

HopeHeFails on January 10, 2014 at 5:27 PM

No bailouts for Cronycare.

FloatingRock on January 10, 2014 at 5:30 PM

redguy on January 10, 2014 at 4:38 PM

Makes sense…thanx!

Dr. ZhivBlago on January 10, 2014 at 5:34 PM

Two word policy: no bailouts.

Robert_Paulson on January 10, 2014 at 5:37 PM

I think these corrupt insurance companies that lobbied for, wrote and promoted Obamacare should not get bailed out and should go out of business so that free-market insurance companies can take their place and reinstitute a competitive free market insurance industry. I would rather eliminate the fascist Cronycare program we have now and let the left have their single-payer system as long as we can also have an unregulated free-market insurance industry along side, in which the crony insurance companies are not welcome.

FloatingRock on January 10, 2014 at 5:41 PM

CantCureStupid on January 10, 2014 at 5:20 PM

No let’s just let millions of Americans lose their insurance and their jobs by pushing and going along with this travesty to save BCBS’s business, you can call me all the names you want.
They pushed for it went along with it and now want to be on the dole.

http://ace.mu.nu/

MontanaMmmm on January 10, 2014 at 5:43 PM

Blaming the insurance industry for the actions of politicians is so stupid it’s breathtaking. Blue Cross is not responsible for your disappearing freedoms or for congressional malpractice. Good grief!

CantCureStupid on January 10, 2014 at 5:20 PM

Industrial Policy: Four years ago, the insurance industry decided to get in bed with President Obama to help him get his health reform passed. But as soon as things started to go wrong, guess who Obama blamed?

Soon after President Obama won the 2008 election, the big insurance industry lobby laid down its arms. Instead of fighting a government takeover of health care as it did in 1994 — it announced it would partner up.

“Universal coverage is within reach,” said Karen Ignagni, head of the America’s Health Insurance Plans trade group. And just as the president signed Obama-Care into law, AHIP teamed up with a big liberal health reform lobby, Families USA, to form Enroll America and “make reform work.”

Read More At Investor’s Business Daily: http://news.investors.com/ibd-editorials-obama-care/103113-677543-obama-blames-insurance-industry-for-obamacare-failures.htm#ixzz2q2SdbT8e
Follow us: @IBDinvestors on Twitter | InvestorsBusinessDaily on Facebook

MontanaMmmm on January 10, 2014 at 5:50 PM

More lies.

TX-96 on January 10, 2014 at 5:51 PM

CantCureStupid on January 10, 2014 at 5:20 PM

When crony insurance companies in bed with the government go out of business and have to lay off their employees it will be a boon for free market insurance companies that aren’t in bed with the government, allowing them to grow and take the place of the corrupt companies. We’ll all be better off as a result, assuming we can legalize the free market again.

FloatingRock on January 10, 2014 at 5:56 PM

What will happen?

Doctors will take CASH!

As for the ‘insurance industry’ – those bastards made a deal with King Barack, they can just live OR DIE with it! – GarandFan on January 10, 2014 at 5:20 PM

It is about time for all doctors to start listing their prices for procedures and let the free market work. Today doctor’s offices are full of people just to handle the insurance claims and the battles with patients and insurance companies.

SC.Charlie on January 10, 2014 at 5:57 PM

…And a lot of the laid off employees from bankrupted corrupt insurers will get re-hired by their free-market competitors, so the employees will be better off in the long run, too.

FloatingRock on January 10, 2014 at 5:58 PM

MontanaMmmm on January 10, 2014 at 5:43 PM

News flash– If BCBS and its subsidiaries go out of business, millions lose coverage. If they’d told the feds to kiss their ass, millions would have lost coverage.

They did not push it. And they went along with it because insurance is their business and complying with law and regulation is part if the cost of being in that business. God bless, what is wrong with people?

CantCureStupid on January 10, 2014 at 5:59 PM

Will Obamacare be repealed or won’t it? Will Congress fund it or won’t it? Will the web site be fixed or won’t it? Blah, blah, blah. We the people just need to do what we need to do and Congress be damned. Resist. Refuse. Revolt. EXEMPT OURSELVES! We did not comply with Prohibition and we simply should not comply with Obamacare. For religious reasons. For privacy reasons. For the cause of liberty and freedom and in protest of the idea that the federal government (under one party rule, no less), can force private citizens to purchase anything with our own money. Are we citizens or subjects? Mice or (wo)men? Just say NO to socialism and to the corrupt, unionized, far left IRS, the gestapo of America’s political class. After all, the federal government ignores millions of illegals who are breaking U.S. immigration law every day. Our Founders pledged their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor. All we have to do is just say no to a scheme we all know is un-American and a violation of our most basic founding fundamentals of privacy, self reliance, limited government and individual freedom.

devan95 on January 10, 2014 at 6:00 PM

CantCureStupid on January 10, 2014 at 5:59 PM

Yeah, sure… and if Microsoft, Apple and Google didn’t crawl in bed with the NSA the government would have closed down all their companies and threw their officers in a gulag in Alask or something.

Sorry, not buying it. If there companies had fought against tyranny instead of joining it the American people and the world would have been with them and the government would have had to have found another way, or taken their ball and gone home. There is no excuse for fascism. “Following orders” is not an excuse.

FloatingRock on January 10, 2014 at 6:08 PM

Have they run any polls yet for insurance company welfare? Make sure you break it down by party affiliation.

Buddahpundit on January 10, 2014 at 6:14 PM

God bless, what is wrong with people?

CantCureStupid on January 10, 2014 at 5:59 PM

What’s wrong with people is they make excuses for corruption and want to bail out wrongdoing and failure when the best thing is for bad people and businesses to pay for their mistakes to discourage them and others from repeating said mistakes in the future. Rewarding failure and corruption only encourages bad behavior and allows it to thrive and then good companies are the ones that pay the price and go out of business instead. It’s like after the crash in ’08 when the government bailed out all of their corrupt banking cronies and then the corrupt banks used the money to buy up a lot of good banks that weren’t involved in their corporatist schemes, so now we have even bigger corrupt banks and far fewer innocent banks. The correct solution after ’08 should have been to allow the corrupt banks to go out of business so that the good banks could thrive and take their place. Part of the reason that didn’t happen is because then the politicians that rely on kickbacks from their corrupt banking cronies to get reelected would loose their elections because their cronies would be bankrupt and/or in prison.

FloatingRock on January 10, 2014 at 6:15 PM

If BCBS and its subsidiaries go out of business, millions lose coverage.
They did not push it. And they went along with it because insurance is their business and complying with law and regulation is part if the cost of being in that business. God bless, what is wrong with people?

CantCureStupid on January 10, 2014 at 5:59 PM

You’re mostly right about them being forced to go along with Obamacare, but the risk corridor part of the law is a nice piece of crony capitalism – using government to avoid the risks of the marketplace.

That was their payoff for not fighting Obamacare. Like all crony capitalism it reduces competition and innovation in the marketplace. And it’s probably illegal under anti-collusion laws.

kcewa on January 10, 2014 at 6:15 PM

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