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Elizabeth Warren’s ‘Medicare for All’ tax problem

Elizabeth Warren’s ‘Medicare for All’ tax problem

“she’s going to have a hard time selling it because giving everybody free healthcare sounds great, but there’s no real ‘free’, people are going to have to pay for it” through higher taxes.

Elizabeth Warren has been catching flak from her fellow Democrat presidential candidates over her refusal to say how she will pay for her $30 trillion plus Medicare for All plan.

In contrast to Bernie, who is honest enough to say he’ll raise taxes including on the middle class (though even that won’t raise enough revenue), Warren has employed the same strategy she use when caught falsely claiming to be Native American: Deflect and delay.

Despite Medicare for All being central to Warren’s campaign, she has no plan for it. She has no way to pay for it. She won’t answer questions about how much taxes will increase, particularly for the middle class. Instead, now that her back is to the wall, she says she is working on a plan.

I appeared on Fox News @Night with Shannon Bream on October 21, to discuss Warren’s anticipated “plan” (transcript below the video).

SHANNON BREAM: Senator Warren doubling down. You heard there, on Medicare for all and pushing ahead with their other progressive proposals as she is surging in the polls. Let’s discuss it now with democratic strategist Dave Brown, and Cornell Clinical Professor of Law and founder of the Legal Insurrection website. William Jacobson. Welcome to you both.

WAJ: Good to be here.

BREAM: So the New York Times is pointing out that the Senator is not answering questions when she’s pushed again and again We saw this in the debate last week about whether this means an increase in taxes for the middle class. They say she’s sidestepped questions about raising taxes no matter who was asking, and when Ms. Warren’s repeated refusal to explicitly say whether she would raise taxes on the middle class to help fund Medicare for All has stood in stark contrast to how she’s talked about other policy areas, providing lengthy, detailed plans. Professor, what do you expect when she finally tells us how she’s going to pay for this price tag?

WAJ: Well, I think there’s gonna, it’s going to be the way things typically go in Washington. There’ll be projections, there’ll be formulas put into the projections that will get her the result that she wants. But the question will be whether those formulas in those projections are realistic. Because as we know, government programs always end up costing a lot more than they’re projected to cost. And the revenues that come from taxes to fund those programs are always less than projected. So I think that’s going to be the real test. Is she coming up with the real world projection and a real world plan or is it essentially going to be pie in the sky? And apparently many of her democratic contenders do not have confidence that she’s going to come up with a realistic plan. So this criticism isn’t even coming from Republicans. It’s coming from other Democrats. And I think that’s a very telling sign.

* * *

BREAM: Well, the Kaiser family foundation polls on this about Medicare for All and initially when you ask people, it has a positive rating, but we will put up some of these results, when you start asking them about delays in treatments, whether it would require people to pay more taxes, whether it would eliminate private health insurance companies, they are not feeling it at all.

Professor quickly, do you think that this is something that can be sold to the American people?

WAJ: Well, I think it’s going to be very difficult because this is the centerpiece of her political platform and she doesn’t even have a plan for it. She has a plan for everything else except for the thing that’s the centerpiece of her political platform and that’s really quite astounding. And I think she’s going to have a hard time selling it because giving everybody free healthcare sounds great, but there’s no real ‘free’, people are going to have to pay for it and that’s really the question that she doesn’t want to answer.


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Open borders and free shit for everyone. Only a prog could be so stupid.

Has no plan…. and not even a slogan like “Hope and Change”

Even I know what to say, even if it’s bullsh*t:

“We will work with Congress to fund this by cutting unnecessary spending in areas that are not important to hard-working Americans….blah,blah,blah….

But she can’t even manage that:

All this makes me curious as to her approach to foreign policy…..

Neither NK nor Iran is going to be worried by her … and the Chinese are just giggling about dealing with her instead of Trump.

By the way, has she made -any- foreign policy statements beyond “Orange Man Bad”?

I loved the Dimocrat strategist propagandist’s reaction as the Professor was giving his second response.

He looked like a 13 year old boy, listening to his father explain the opposite sex to him.

Sorry, Liz. #TANSTAAFL

    Funny thing, so much of college is a dim memory, but that is one thing I remember, TANSTAAFL.

    The other tidbit I recall, is something like either you are part of the problem, or part of the solution.

    College is much different now.. They can’t even discuss issues, and need a safe space to protect them from even hearing about problems.

    TANSTAAFL indeed. TY.

I’m working on a plan of my own, to take over the world. God I wish I hadn’t announced that until it was ready. Oops!

amatuerwrangler | October 22, 2019 at 10:26 am

I hope no one is finding this unusual. At this point everyone is promising free stuff to get nominated. Their base is heavy with people who think free stuff is actually free, only because they won’t have to pay for it. The fact is that someone will, but if it isn’t them, fine. When they get the nomination they will start with the “I didn’t really say that…” routine.

Romney was right back in 2012 when he was filmed saying that campaigning on lowering taxes was not as persuasive as the audience might think because roughly half the voters don’t pay taxes (income tax) so the level of taxes on someone else didn’t matter to them. Once the nominations are set and the real campaign gets rolling Screeching Hen will will be pushing something else because the free stuff won’t have the same level of attractiveness to the people who will have to pay for it.

And we have known all this from the beginning.

It shouldn’t be up to the country to aswage Fauxcahnoats white, liberal, guilt.

Aragorn the Wiser | October 22, 2019 at 10:46 am

And you know if the estimate is $30 trillion, the actual cost will be at least $90 trillion

I’m not necessarily in favor of a single payer government plan but I would like to see a cost comparison between public vs private. That is, isn’t it really an incomplete argument to say that this would be a huge tax increase without comparing that tax increase to a decrease in insurance premiums for individuals and business that cover employees?

For my health insurance today, I pay about $7,000 a year through payroll deductions and I’m out of pocket another $7,000 in deductibles per year and the company I work for covers even more. Let’s say my taxes increase $500 month for single payer that’s obviously a huge tax increase over what I’m paying today but if I no longer have to pay the $14K a year for premiums and deductibles it’s really a positive cash flow savings for me.

I’d love to see a real comparison of total overall costs as a country and for individuals for public vs private.

    MajorWood in reply to 5under3. | October 22, 2019 at 11:09 am

    Single payer removes free-market forces; everything goes up. When we shop from our pockets, we look for the best value. When that incentive is not a part of the formula, then there is no pressure to contain costs. Also, demand for services goes up because people choose to consume more since they are isolated from the actual costs. Costs go up every time something becomes free. Look at housing. When banks started to let people buy houses with flakey 0% down loans, the demand, and therefore price for housing went up. Then the bubble burst. Look at colleges. Massive student loan programs made college “free” for awhile by deferring the costs. Colleges overbuilt and costs went way up because demand for services increased, and now their bubble is about to burst. So with a single-payer medicare plan, yes, taxes will go up, but they won’t go up enough which will fuel a massive deficit to cover all that was promised until the entire system collapses. Can’t get something for nothing; no free lunch. But those who feel entitled will at some point be the majority of voters and that is when our system as we know it will collapse.

      notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital in reply to MajorWood. | October 22, 2019 at 2:18 pm


      Just see Big Government Stick-Nose-in-None-of-its-Beeswax has done to the cost and quality of higher education.

      nomadic100 in reply to MajorWood. | October 22, 2019 at 4:36 pm

      Everyone discussing “Medicare for all” focuses exclusively on the economic aspects of the “plan” and how, if at all, it will be paid for. No one ever seems to want to discuss the impact of such a revolutionary change on the healthcare system itself, i.e., doctors and hospitals. Medicare reimburses doctors at roughly 60% of the reimbursement provided by private insurers. Medicaid reimbursements are very often less than the cost of providing the service. Already many rural hospitals are closing because of insolvency. Where I live – a small town in North Carolina – our local 25 bed hospital is already subsidized by local property taxes. As for the doctors, “Medicare for all” will greatly hasten the retirement of doctors already reeling from federal mandates for the “electronic medical record” and will dissuade the “best and brightest” students from choosing a career in medicine so there will be fewer applicants for medical school of lower quality. Is this really what we want?

        budmania in reply to nomadic100. | October 22, 2019 at 5:36 pm

        Spot on! From my own personal experience…I’ve gone thru 2 prmary care docs in the last few years who “retired” because they were fed up with the bulllshit. I look at my medicare statement and don’t know how doctors & hospitals will survive when everyone is on medicare.

If Warren gets the nomination then even this faint criticism from Democrats will vanish. Any opposition to Warren and her plan will be deemed by the media to be Hitlerian sexism pushed by evil Russian assets.

notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital | October 22, 2019 at 2:16 pm

Keep Pounding this Professor!

Lizzie is CrAcKin UP on the subject.

CNN Reporter: Warren’s Health Care Dodging Became ‘Politically Untenable’… (video in article)

It really is simple: the US spends over $10k per person on health care, or about $20k per worker. Now, how are we going to pay for it?

Good to see Fox knows a real legal expert when they hear one

Just a reminder of how leftist cost estimates go when they try to sell their really suck-@$$ ideas to the public; case study, Kali incredibly shrinking high speed rail system (HSR):

1999: The California High Speed Rail Authority (CHSRA) estimates $25B total cost in 1999 dollars for envisioned 670 mile system from S.F. through L.A. to Irvine INCLUDING extensions to Sacramento and San Diego.

2005: Between $33-$37B in 2003 dollars, depending on the alignment and station options.

2006: $45 billion for entire system.

2008: CHSRA unveils new business plan, focused just on 520 mile S.F. to Anaheim segment which is renamed phase 1. All extensions postponed indefinitely. Estimate for phase 1 is $33.6 in 2008 dollars. New business plan is presented to voters as a ballot proposition, asking voters to vote for a $9B bond to fund construction. Stupidly, kali voters approve Prop 1A. Obvious flaw: costs will inflate over time as construction will take years. $9B is fixed and will inevitably shrink as a percentage of total cost and kali voters will be told they need to pony up more $$$ over time, and stupidly they will no doubt to continue flushing money down the toilet (I have already moved to TX years earlier having thrown up my hands in disgust over the shear idiocy of a state once capable of producing Ronald Reagan).

2009: Whoops! CHSRA updates the cost estimate it presented voters just in November of 2008. Revised upwards to $34.9B, which converts to $42.6 billion in year of expenditure (YOE) dollars. Revised CHSRA business plan assumes looney tunes level of federal, local, and private investor funding. Clearly the CHSRA is using the same accounting firm as CALPERS (California Public Employees Retirement System) which uses similar bats**t crazy accounting tricks to pretend it can make ends meet.

2011: in November the CHSRA releases new cost estimate for phase 1; $65.4B to $74.5B with basically no explanation why the massive increase in costs from just two years earlier. Revised business plan offers two options for an Initial Operating Section (IOS): Bakersfield north to San Jose or Merced south to the San Fernando valley. Kali voters are now being told to their face they’ve been scammed, and the original 1999 estimate will now get them a train from nowhere to nowhere (although these 2011 estimates are in YOE dollars).

2012: Another year, it’s time for a revised business plan. CHSRA settles on IOS from Merced to the garden spot, highly coveted business hub of Bakersfield (segue to Barstow, as Johnny Carson used to put it). CHRSA now proposes not building HSR track at all for extensions “approaching” S.F. and L.A. (the remaining portions of phase 1 are now “extensions” which basically advertises the fact the Kali government figures there’s no insult Kali voters won’t meekly swallow). The revised estimate for this stupidity is $68.4B (the new CHSRA concludes that actually building HSR track to S.F. and Anaheim would raise the cost to well over $90B). Funding from federal, local, and private sources spirals further away from anything resembling reality, indicating the CHSRA meets in one of the few remaining Kali state mental hospitals, if the board members and their staff aren’t actually full time inmates.

2014: CHSRA revises cost estimate for phase 1 down slightly to $67.6B based on savings discovered in unicorn dung, abandoning any hope of building HSR track along entire route, and requiring southbound travelers to transfer to Metrolink (SoCal’s name for AMTRACK). Northbound travelers will have to take taxis or walk to their final destination I suppose because the CHSRA just plans on stranding them in San Jose. CHSRA basically admits that like fauxcahantas it has no idea where it will find funding for this, but claims the IOS from Merced to Bakersfield will start service in 2022.

2016: Like a lady, when Kali used to acknowledge the existence of ladies, the non-binary persons of color on the board of the CHSRA are always entitled to change their minds (easily as often as they’re entitled to change their genders). The IOS will now go north from somewhere in the central valley to San Jose. Costs for the IOS are revised down further to $64.2B because they plan on funding this using carbon cap-and-trade revenue, which is only slightly more unrealistic then the funding they were planning on finding in unicorn excrement, the stupidity of kali voters which apparently exists in endless supply, delaying start of service from 2022 to 2025, and halting construction of the IOS to a spot “just north” of Bakersfield. I grew up in Kali; can someone tell me WTF exists “just north” of Bakersfield? I’m thinking a cattle ranch or a soybean field, but I know that’s unrealistic as ever since “saving” the Delta Smelt took priority over producing food in Kali the farmers don’t really have the water to irrigate their crops and the Kali cattle ranchers had to sell most of their herds to ranchers in other states, such as ranchers here in the great state of Texas. Which means if the CHSRA wants to build a station in the middle of what used to be farm and ranch country they can no doubt buy the real estate cheap. I wouldn’t doubt though that, in a perfect illustration of Soviet-style central planning the station will be in the middle of nowhere with no roads connecting it to an actual transportation system or any other provision for onward travel. And the CHSRA still has no clue where it’s going to get the money to complete the increasingly Orwellian-named phase 1 (which if the CHSRA had any self-awareness at all means phase 1 isn’t really phase 1 but phase Who-Knows?).

2018: The CHSRA authority abandons any pretense it has any grasp on costs, or for that matter reality. It begins offering ranges of costs for phase 1 from $63.3B to $98.1B depending upon future events that it admits it can’t possibly predict. But despite the fact it has no idea what tomorrow will bring it confidently suggests a middle-of-the-road figure of $77.3B. The CHSRA authority admits that even if it gets revenue from Kali cap-and-trade scheme (the unicorns would be a safer bet) it won’t have enough $$ to completed the IOS, which means now that not only is phase 1 not phase 1, but the initial operating segment isn’t even the initial operating segment. Instead the CHSRA proposes building two unconnected segments. One from Merced to “just north” of Bakersfield, the other from San Francisco to Gilroy.

Most of you have probably never heard of Gilroy. It bills itself as the Garlic Capitol of the World, and its annual garlic festival is pretty awesome. And the boutique wineries do produce some fine wines.

But picking a town with a population of 50K people more or less as even an interim terminus for this multi-billion dollar boondoggle is simply crazy talk. Which is of course par for the course for the CHSRA, or Kali state and local governments in general. Word from the insane asylum is that the architects are depending on hope that somehow funding will appear in the future by magic so they can complete the 41 mile link (15 miles of which will be tunnel through the Pacheco Pass) between the two unconnected segments.

So, hell yeah! Government-run healthcare here we come.

notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital | October 26, 2019 at 2:20 pm