The Healthcare Crisis and the Banking Debacle: A Disaster in the Making

Bubonic Plague. Photo by Hans Splinter/Flickr.

Bubonic Plague. Photo by Hans Splinter/Flickr.

“Can a Sick Nation Defend Itself? Can We Afford Another Banking Plague?”

The Unfettered Insurance Exchange Concept Could Effectively Create an Analogy with the Massive Profits Gained by the Banking Industry at the Expense of the Public.

(PRWEB) 31 July 2012

Author and investigative journalist James R. Goldberg, author of The American Medical Money Machine: The Destruction of Healthcare in America and the Rise of Medical Tourism, reminds the public that in recent years, US banks were given billions of dollars to stimulate the economy. He claims, “They broke their promise. Instead of injecting these funds into the economy, they continued to speculate both with depositor and Federal funds. The result has only brought the country joblessness and hopelessness.”

The banking industry was deregulated by the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act in 1999 under President Bill Clinton. This legislation overturned the emergency Banking Act of 1933, commonly known as the Glass–Steagal Act, designed to rein in banks from engaging in speculative ventures, to provide consumer protection and to insure the safety of the nation’s financial system. “When Glass was repealed, a speculative domino effect wiped out the world monetary system’s integrity. Are we now creating a similar scenario whereby mandated healthcare insurance is going to jeopardize the well being of the US economy?” Goldberg asks.

Goldberg’s publisher, Robert Marshall of Homonculus Press, said, “There is no such oversight over the Insurance Exchanges provided for by The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). There are virtually no defined regulations established in the Obamacare law—meaning no one has the authority to stop the insurance industry from overcharging and underpaying benefits for these new mandated policies. The Exchanges are essentially self governed.”

According to the author, “The unfettered Insurance Exchange concept could effectively create an analogy with the massive profits gained by the banking industry at the expense of the public: no new jobs, home foreclosures, stagnate national and global economies and a growing population receiving increasingly less healthcare at higher cost. It’s a healthcare crisis and banking disaster in the making.”

Goldberg warns, “Banks—we can look to Citibank as an example—made the conscious decision not to inject the hundreds of billions of dollars received through the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) into the economy. The results have been suffocating job markets and declining national growth. We’re going to have the same results under Obamacare.”

Goldberg further expressed his amazement saying, “On July 25, 2012, Sanford Weil, former Chairman and CEO of Citicorp, publicly announced that he thought it might be a good idea to reinstate Glass–Steagal, and that banks should be split to obey the former 1933-enacted restrictions; in other words, he now wants to return to the regulations that controlled our monetary and banking systems. The audacity incorporated in Weil’s proclamation that the banks be split up, after he personally played a major role in repealing Glass–Steagal, is mind boggling! Whoops, we made a mistake and now want to return to the old days?”

Marshall points to two books by Nobel Prize Winner, Joseph Stiglitz, Free Fall, and The Price of Inequality, that examine how 99 percent of the country’s wealth has been consolidated by a controlling one percent who operates through greed and avarice without care for human suffering. Goldberg surmises, “The Obamacare Insurance Exchanges create a new opportunity for this one percent—the power elite—to choke the US healthcare system without facing any form of legislated reprisal.”

Goldberg said, “Although the Obamacare legislation guarantees that patients with pre-existing conditions will be insured, the voluminous law does not say how much the insurance companies can charge for this mandate. Shortly after Obamacare was passed, many insurance companies dramatically increased their premiums, co-payments and deductibles. They also proceeded to cut reimbursements to doctors, especially those treating Medicare patients, as part of their cost cutting measures. Blue Shield of California increased their rates for individual policies by 59 percent. And they are just getting started,” Goldberg says.

“As the baby boomers are now at the age where they require more medical care, less will be available and what is available will cost more. This is all by design,” Goldberg declares. “If doctors are progressively receiving less reimbursement for medical care and patients are paying more and more, who is benefiting? It’s no wonder thousands of practitioners are leaving medicine. And those who are considering entering the medical field have seen the writing on the wall and are choosing other professions.”

According to a report on Kaiser’s research website where health policy is explained, the size of healthcare in 2010 was $2.6 trillion. In 2007, the Department of Justice (DOJ) estimated that $750 billion had been stolen in Medicare fraud alone. The DOJ recovered $1.2 billion in 2007, a significant portion from the medical insurance industry, at a cost of $250 million for their internal expenses. “The amount lost to Medicare fraud exceeded the entire Pentagon budget for that same time period” the author exclaimed.

“It should be clear to the public that it is the insurance companies who dispense Federal medical benefits and many firms bonus their employees not to pay out benefits. This is a disgrace.” Goldberg believes it also unconstitutional in that it “undermines the First Amendment which calls for the Federal Government to protect the United States. How can a country burdened with debt and lacking resources care for the health and protect its people?” he asks.

Goldberg concludes, “The similarities to the banking industry are unmistakable: without oversight the fox will eat everything in the hen house.”

Marshall explains that Goldberg wants to emphasize that his primary interest is in assuring patient safety for those now being forced to purchase policies from private organizations. “With Obamacare, or whatever version of it emerges,” Goldberg remarks, “the insurance industry has never made more money. Right now, premiums, co-pays and deductibles for patients have never been higher. There is ample money in the healthcare system: it simply is being hoarded or converted by the medical insurance cartel.”

The author expects that insurance companies will most likely offer a variety of policies under the Insurance Exchanges mandated by Obamacare. These will have varying benefits and costs. But he also predicts that “they will offer lower cost policies which will require, in many cases, for patients to travel overseas for unregulated and cheaper medical care. This is the likely scenario that will fuel the growth of Medical Tourism and enrich the insurance industry at the expense of patient safety.”

“By offering foreign-based care via the new Obamacare Insurance Exchanges, we’re seeing the prospective engineering of a new means for attracting patients to purchase Medical Tourism based policies. Foreign care is less expensive but completely unregulated.” Goldberg says.

There are plenty of concerns that what is not detailed in the Obamacare legislation will be left open to the discretion of the people behind the Insurance Exchanges. Goldberg believes “it is simple to see how this omission will open the door to new fortunes for the insurance companies.”

Goldberg’s explosive book on the corruption of our health care system and his cautionary tale about the evils of Medical Tourism, The American Medical Money Machine: The Destruction of Healthcare in America and The Rise of Medical Tourism, is available on Amazon in paperback or Kindle, as well as through bookstores everywhere.