Steele Goes Postal on Health Care Reform

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Since becoming the chair of the Republican National Committee, Michael Steele has not acquired a reputation for the cogency of his arguments. It’s hard to pick a favorite from among his many asinine comments, but mine is probably the time he countered Obama’s suggestion that empathy is an valuable quality in a federal judge with this sparkling bon mot: “I’ll give you empathy. Empathize right on your behind!” (His remark that Perez Hilton is the posterchild of “what an empathetic judge looks like“—he was presumably referring to the beauty pageant judiciary—was also pretty classic.)

But I digress. Today, David Corn takes issue with yet another of Steele’s poorly thought-out comparisons—this time, his assertion that government-run health care is “inefficient, limits choices, and hemorrhages taxpayer money like the Post Office.” David asks the obvious question: don’t most people have an infinitely more positive experience with the Post Office than they do with private insurance companies? 

 

 

In terms of services provided, I would rate [the Post Office] far ahead of the private health care insurers I’ve had to deal with. Consider this: You can put a letter, photo or whatnot in an envelope, scribble an address on that envelope, drop it in a box, and within a matter of days that very same envelope will appear at the door of the recipient, wherever he or she may live in the United States, even if it’s thousands of miles away…

Compare all this to health insurance companies… They routinely don’t respond to claims. They often say claims were not received. Or they maintain they cannot make out one piece of information on the claim (the date, the numerical code of the service rendered, etc.). They appear to do whatever they can to duck claims. Then, if they acknowledge receiving a properly filed claim, they often do whatever they can to deny it in full or part…Without question, of all the service providers I interact with, health insurers have been the most aggravating.

Read the whole thing here.

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Thank you!

We didn't know what to expect when we told you we needed to raise $400,000 before our fiscal year closed on June 30, and we're thrilled to report that our incredible community of readers contributed some $415,000 to help us keep charging as hard as we can during this crazy year.

You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

The months and years ahead won't be easy. Far from it. But there's no one we'd rather face the big challenges with than you, our committed and passionate readers, and our team of fearless reporters who show up every day.

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