Category Archives: Health Care

Conflict of Interest

               Uncle Thomas Strikes Again

As revealed by Al Sharpton last night, Supreme Court Justices Clarence Thomas and Anthony Scalia once again showed their dedication to bipartisanship by attending a fundraiser  held by the Federalist Society. The Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy Studies is a conservative legal group whose focus is to redefine law by reinterpreting the Constitution.

Why is this relevant?  Because the Supreme Court had just announced that it would hear a case concerning the constitutionality of Obamacare.  Guess who was sitting between the two judges? … Paul Clement.  Clement is the lead attorney arguing the case against Obamacare that the Supreme Court will be hearing!

Also, Uncle Thomas’ wife Virginia is a vocal lobbyist for conservative and tea party groups.  Earlier, the Supreme Court decided  (Citizens United vs. FEC ) that corporations are people, therefore allowing them to contribute unlimited funds to political campaigns in anonymity .  Virginia was a prominent voice in the lobby for this outcome.

To me, this looks like a clear conflict of interest. Should the judges not have to recuse themselves from the case for merely the appearance of a conflict of interest? Do conflict of interest rules apply to everyone but the Supreme Court?  After watching the story, I had only one question:  What had I done to Al Sharpton, and why is he yelling at me?

– L. Morales

On Veterans’ Day…

       Mitt Wit

… Mitt Romney suggested that, if he were President, he would move to privatize veterans health care.  Well, why not?  We all know that what a private health care system does is concentrate on providing it’s patients the best possible diagnosis, treatment, and care, right?  We all know that it wouldn’t deteriorate into a system where patients were treated as a means to an end; the end being maximum corporate profit. Right?

Mitt states: “When you work in the private sector and you have a competitor, you know if I don’t treat this customer right, they’re going to leave me and go somewhere else, so I’d better treat them right.”  Hmmm… interesting.  Like a “Health Insurance Exchange”? That thing that would compete  cost-efficiently, and allow the coverage of more people?  (Per Wikipedia: Exchanges are not themselves insurers, so they do not bear risk themselves, but determine which insurance companies are allowed to participate in them. Ideally, a well-designed exchange will promote insurance transparency and accountability, facilitate increased enrollment and the delivery of subsidies, while also playing roles in “spreading risk”, i.e., ensuring that the costs associated with those with high medical needs are shared more broadly across large groups rather than spread across just a few beneficiaries.)  Didn’t the Republicans fight Pres. Obama tooth and nail on that one?

Wow, sorry, went a little deep on that one.  I keep forgetting… its Mitt Romney. That was yesterday.

– L. Morales

Health care law held constitutional in latest appeals court ruling

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