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Thread: GAO Gives Up on Auditing Government Over Medicare Projections, Cites 'Uncertainties'

  1. #11
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    Re: GAO Gives Up on Auditing Government Over Medicare Projections, Cites 'Uncertainti

    We as a nation have(for the past decade or so) been steadily marching to a situation where the definitions of technical terms and the measurement of data available to us, both of which are used for making hugely important policy decisions, have been rendered increasingly vague or illusory. The end result is that the government can describe the technical aspects of the economy in any way it likes and have the end result be confusion and apathy rather than understanding and anger.

    The definition of the term "recession," for example. It once has a very well-known mathematical definition (I believe it was 2 consecutive quarters of decline in the GDP, but that's neither here nor there), and the definition most commonly used has since become significantly less firm. In some cases, the duration of decline necessary for a recession has telescoped to a year and beyond, and in other cases the word is used as if it's some kind of slang adjective.

    At any rate, this is nothing new, it doesn't surprise me, and I don't see it stopping anytime soon -- no matter who is in the White House or running Capitol Hill.
    I'm already gearing up for Finger Vote 2014.

    Just for reference, means my post was a giant steaming pile of sarcasm.

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    Re: GAO Gives Up on Auditing Government Over Medicare Projections, Cites 'Uncertainti

    Quote Originally Posted by Whovian View Post
    GAO Gives Up on Auditing Government Over Medicare Projections, Cites 'Uncertainties' - FoxNews.com




    Wow. The Obama administration experts at work. Gotta love that 'hopey-changy' thing, huh.

    The administrations numbers are so hopelessly ****ed up, the GAO can't even properly audit them!

    And without knowing the real numbers on Medicare, you can't count on any savings there for use in paying for that monstrosity called Obamacare. Sweet.

    Way to go, Barry!
    And with the new census data, I'm sure it's even more interesting.
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    Re: GAO Gives Up on Auditing Government Over Medicare Projections, Cites 'Uncertainti

    Did I fall asleep and miss where the GAO became a partisan organization?
    He touched her over her bra and underpants, she says, and guided her hand to touch him over his underwear
    Quote Originally Posted by Lutherf View Post
    We’ll say what? Something like “nothing happened” ... Yeah, we might say something like that.

  4. #14
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    Re: GAO Gives Up on Auditing Government Over Medicare Projections, Cites 'Uncertainti

    Quote Originally Posted by Deuce View Post
    Did I fall asleep and miss where the GAO became a partisan organization?
    Who said that they were? I'm reading the OP's post as arguing that the fact that GAO has given up on making these estimates says something about the validity of the numbers that people have used to defend the health care bill and its supposed cost curbs for Medicare.
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    Re: GAO Gives Up on Auditing Government Over Medicare Projections, Cites 'Uncertainti

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    Who said that they were? I'm reading the OP's post as arguing that the fact that GAO has given up on making these estimates says something about the validity of the numbers that people have used to defend the health care bill and its supposed cost curbs for Medicare.
    I was referring to all the responses who try to paint this as being the fault of Democrats specifically.
    He touched her over her bra and underpants, she says, and guided her hand to touch him over his underwear
    Quote Originally Posted by Lutherf View Post
    We’ll say what? Something like “nothing happened” ... Yeah, we might say something like that.

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    Re: GAO Gives Up on Auditing Government Over Medicare Projections, Cites 'Uncertainti

    Quote Originally Posted by Deuce View Post
    I was referring to all the responses who try to paint this as being the fault of Democrats specifically.
    If the uncertainty is caused in large part by the democrats' health care bill and its never-gonna-happen cuts in medicare reimbursement rates, then why would it be wrong to paint this as having been caused by those democrats? It sounds like that's exactly what happened.
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    Re: GAO Gives Up on Auditing Government Over Medicare Projections, Cites 'Uncertainti

    From the OP:

    The GAO report cited an alternative projection showing the long-term shortfall over 75 years could actually be $12.4 trillion more than the $22.8 trillion estimated by the federal government. The huge gap between possible budget scenarios made it virtually impossible to weigh in, Dacey said.
    Gosh, the GAO can't project medical care costs over the next 75 years. Go figure. Must be the fault of the Obama administration. Since there have been hardly any changes in medical science since 1935, and since scientific progress has stopped now; since changes in demographics are all calculated with precision, and since everyone knows what the needs will be in 2085, one would expect an exact account of the expenditures anticipated over that time, wouldn't you think?
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    Re: GAO Gives Up on Auditing Government Over Medicare Projections, Cites 'Uncertainti

    Quote Originally Posted by Dittohead not! View Post
    From the OP:



    Gosh, the GAO can't project medical care costs over the next 75 years. Go figure. Must be the fault of the Obama administration. Since there have been hardly any changes in medical science since 1935, and since scientific progress has stopped now; since changes in demographics are all calculated with precision, and since everyone knows what the needs will be in 2085, one would expect an exact account of the expenditures anticipated over that time, wouldn't you think?
    Snark aside, he has a perfectly valid point.

    Actuaries regularly calculate the 75-year shortfalls for programs like SS and Medicare. They've been able to do it for the past few decades. It's only now, after the most recent healthcare bill included huge cuts that nobody with any sense believes will actually happen, that these actuaries are now unable to even come up with numbers at all.

    I think that's a perfectly valid story to note, as it highlights how much of the supposed "cost savings" in Obama's healthcare bill are simply pipe dreams and delusions.
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    Re: GAO Gives Up on Auditing Government Over Medicare Projections, Cites 'Uncertainti

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    Not saying that this isn't possible, but people said the exact same things 20 or 30 years ago.
    Most of the medical advances that were predicted for today were the kinds of things that actually transpired: Better treatments for major killers, better monitoring of infectious diseases, and the beginnings of effective cancer therapy and genetic therapy. When people went out on a limb, it was mostly for things like a cure for cancer...In other words, people thought medicine would get better but the fundamental way we practice medicine was not really in question.

    That won't be the case in the next few decades. The cost of genome sequencing is dropping at a Moore's Law-like rate, so that we'll probably be able to sequence our genomes for $1,000 by next year and for $100 a few years after that. This (along with advances in stem cell therapy which are tightly intertwined with genomics) will not merely enable BETTER medicine, it will enable a different KIND of medicine...where people know exactly what diseases they are at risk for, where medicine is prescribed for specific patients instead of the average patient, where we can regrow healthy organs/tissues in the laboratory, and where we can reprogram our cells and turn our genes on and off at will. All of these things mean that we should have a lot more preventative care soon, which is almost always cheaper than treating disease.
    Last edited by Kandahar; 12-26-10 at 06:15 PM.
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    Re: GAO Gives Up on Auditing Government Over Medicare Projections, Cites 'Uncertainti

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    Not saying that this isn't possible, but people said the exact same things 20 or 30 years ago.
    I would agree with Right here. Partially, some of the higher costs are due to the better treatment. If someone would have died in his 60s from a disease we now can treat lives to 95, we've just increased healthcare costs by that extension. Sure, individual costs may have declined by the extension of life via increased treatments seems to have erased those financial cost reductions. Sure, we live longer due to better treatment, but we end up costing more. We get all this new stuff, but it doesn't make it cheaper.

    And preventive medicine won't reduce the most expensive medical costs.
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