March 23, 2010

The 3% Nonsolution

A common figure for annual health care spending in the U.S. is 2.5 trillion dollars (according to the Dept. of Health and Human Services (HHS), it was 2.34 trillion dollars in 2008 and projected to have been 2.47 trillion in 2009 and to be 2.57 trillion in 2010).

The "historic" health care bill just signed into law has an estimated cost of just under 1 trillion dollars (938 billion). But that's over 10 years. So make it 100 billion dollars annually, or about half the cost of the crusades in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Thus, the bill will represent less than 4% of the country's health care spending.

Small change indeed.

Especially as HHS projects total spending to increase to almost 4.5 trillion dollars by 2019.

This "monumental" reform bill will represent less than 2.7% of the next 10 years' health care spending.

Its only significance is criminalizing not having insurance and forcing people into private "coverage". A cruel mockery of care, this is blatant extortion on behalf of corporate profits.