Obamacre ripoff: You die, Massachussets gets rich

Obamacre ripoff: You die, Massachussets gets rich

new-york-post-obamacareJune 21, 2013

By John Seiler

California leads in state implementation of Obamacare. In 2010, then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed legislation making our state the first to set up the “insurance exchanges” that are supposed to make the system work (except it’s having big problems). He said at the time, “For national reform to succeed, it will be up to the states to make it work, and California is moving forward on reforms that will provide affordable and quality health care insurance.”

He should have told that to then-Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., now the U.S. secretary of state. When the U.S. Congress passed Obamacare in 2010, Kerry was interested in one thing: Ripping off the patients in the other 49 states, leaving them to suffer and die painfully, as he shifted their health-care money to his state. He was following the path of his fellow Democratic senator from Massachusetts, Teddy Kennedy, who had died a year before, in 2009. Teddy spent his 47 years in the Senate obsessed with imposing socialized medicine on America, and fell just a year short of seeing it done.

Massachusetts also imposed the socialist Romneycare a decade ago under then-Gov. Mitt Romney, a Republican rejected last year by voters in his presidential bid. Voters figured that, as Romneycare inspired Obamacare, there wasn’t much difference between the two candidates.

Kerry’s con

Anyway, here’s what happened thanks to John Kerry — who, like Teddy and Mitt, is fabulously wealthy, so he always could buy expensive private medical care in Switzerland. Kimberley A. Strassel writes:

“Everyone remember the origins of the so-called Affordable Care Act? The Cornhusker Kickback, the Louisiana Purchase, Gator-Aid, and other buyoffs for the votes of key Senate Democrats?

“Three years on, yet another sweetheart deal has declared itself, this one inserted by the then-senator for Massachusetts. In Congress, it’s becoming known as the Bay State Boondoggle.

“At issue are the dollars that Medicare pays to hospitals for the wages of doctors and staff. Before the new health law, states were each allocated a pot of money to divvy among their hospitals. The states are required to follow rules in handing out the funds, in particular a requirement that state urban hospitals must be reimbursed for wages at least at the levels of state rural hospitals.

“Enter Mr. Kerry, who slipped an opaque provision into the Obama health law to require that Medicare wage reimbursements now come from a national pool of money, rather than state allocations. The Kerry kickback didn’t get much notice, since it was cloaked in technicality and never specifically mentioned Massachusetts. But the senator knew exactly what he was doing.

“You see, ‘rural’ hospitals in Massachusetts are a class all their own. The Bay State has only one, a tiny facility on the tony playground of the superrich—Nantucket. Nantucket College Hospital’s relatively high wages set the floor for what all 81 of the state’s urban hospitals must also be paid. And since these dramatically inflated Massachusetts wages are now getting sucked out of a national pool, there’s little left for the rest of America. Clever Mr. Kerry.

“The change has allowed Massachusetts to raise its Medicare payout by $257 million, forcing cuts to hospitals in 40 other states. The National Rural Health Association and 20 state hospital associations in January sent a panicked letter to President Obama, noting that the Massachusetts manipulation of the program would hand that state $3.5 billion over the next 10 years at the expense of Medicare beneficiaries everywhere. They quoted Mr. Obama’s former head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Donald Berwick, admitting that ‘What Massachusetts gets comes from everybody else.'”

Arnold’s role?

One question I have: What role did Schwarzenegger play in all this? As I noted in my review of “Governator,” the biography of Arnold by Ian Halperin, at the end of his term in office, Arnold basically was tired of it all and let his wife, Maria, make most of the decisions. Maria of course is Maria Shriver-Kennedy, niece of Teddy, and of President JFK and Senator RFK.

So was she the one who turned Arnold’s original opposition to Obamacare, calling it a “ripoff” in Jan. 2010, into signing the implementation bills in Oct. that year?

We also know that the Schwarzeneggers were suffering marital problems in late 2010, and would split the next year when it came out that Arnold had a love child from the family maid.

In such a situation, it’s hard to see Arnold going against Maria on the sweetheart deal set up for Massachusetts, no matter how much Californians suffered.

This is another indication that, to Arnold, the people of California, to use a catch phrase of his from the end of “Commando,” are “Juszt bodiez.”

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