I have the greatest clients. I hope my whole career goes like this. Today I buttoned down the world’s longest escrow. The first lender was an absolute assclown. This dumbass would go 10 days and all we’d hear was crickets. I’d call and say “Excuse Mr. AssKlown, how are we doing?” And he’s say the same thing he said 10 days earlier. This went on for 70 days until he finally quit/left/might have been fired and someone else in the office took over the file. In two days they told us the loan was declined, not because of my stellar client but because of their ignorant underwriting practices. So here we are 108 days into a 30 day escrow and today he finally signed the loan docs provided by my loan guy who stepped in and saved the day. Suffice it to say, I’ve spent a lot of time with this particular client.
He’s a Doctor. Like a physician. He teaches at a teaching hospital I believe. Wicked smart man. He understands escrow and loan documents. And he likes me. We were having a cuppa today after the signing and he asks me what I think about the health care system. I had only ordered a grande, we were in trouble. I’ve had numerous discussions on the subject, some of the most interesting with the Brother. As an attorney he said that we needed to remove the health care system from the tort system, or something very similar. Personally, I’ve thought that the problem is the insurance companies. As exhausted as I was, once a real Doctor asked me that question, I was awash in clarity. We need to remove the tort system and the insurance companies from the equation before we are going to see any real reform in the health care system in this country. <—who said that? He laughed and said I was dreaming of Utopia. Then he asked “Fair enough, what do you do with bad Doctors?” I was worn out. Burn them at the stake was not the correct answer. It was just something I’d heard on the radio this morning in reference to the Salem witch trials. I probably would have mulled this over for a few weeks and really come up with not much of anything. But a funny thing happened on the way home. I’m going on a very tough ride tomorrow (map below) and before I do a really tough ride I like to have the same thing for breakfast. A whole wheat waffle made with egg whites and fat free cottage cheese (double your protein pleasure) with blackstrap molasses on it. Don’t ask. It just makes me happy. I was out of molasses so I stopped at Whole Wallet Foods in San Ramon on the way home. At the corner of Bollinger Canyon and Camino Whateverthatlittlestreetisnexttowholefoods there was a gaggle of protestors waving signs complaining about Obama’s perceived socialism and the proposed health care reforms. And of course American flags. Ass monkeys. Now I had a good Friday night traffic jam to sit in and stew about health care reform. Because no one in San Ramon has lost their health care because they lost their jobs. No one in San Ramon pays $1300 a month to insure their husband and small child because they’re the only family member working. No one in San Ramon is forced to pick between their medicine and food. San Ramon is full of insurance company employees and attorneys and folks that suck the current health care systems teet. Why would they give a damn about any one else on the planet? They carried signs that said we should call McInerney to complain. Unfortunately not one of them is smart enough to know that McInerney might be the smartest man in Congress. He’s a total geek. How would you like to be the smartest man in the room and the room is the Congress of the United States? Probably also the loneliest. And I’m thrilled that an intelligent man upset that grifter Pombo. Just a bunch of shit asses with signs.
So you want real health care reform? Remove insurance companies from the equation. It’s that simple. Doctors no longer have to fill out forms. Patients no longer have to figure out if it’s covered or not. It’s not. Either you can afford it or you have to go see a government Doctor. It’s like anything else. Set your priorities. If you’re stone broke, not a problem, the State will provide you health care. If you can afford a private Doctor, great. Go hire one. If you want to join an HMO, great. If a Doctor commits malpractice a complaint is filed and they go before the Doctor Tribunal. Remove the wrong kidney? You’re voted off of the Doctor island. Your lantern is snuffed out and you leave your license with the concierge on your way outta there. Minor stuff equals revoked privileges for shorter periods of time. The board consists of intermittently either four or five attorneys and either four or five Doctors, for fairness. There’s a review panel that gets you to the infraction board. If you make it to the board, not good. All this is reported and available on a website. Doctor Feelgood gave the King of Pop too much happy juice. License revoked. It’s that simple.
Insurance company profits topped $60 BILLION dollars in 2008. There are over 307 million people living in the U.S. That means that the insurance companies PROFITED $195 per person in 2008. So every American paid $195 more than they needed to for Auto, Life, Health Liability, Liability and Casualty insurance. More than they would have if they just paid for whatever went wrong. But take all the operating costs of the insurance industry and add that number into the figure. Roughly 13 cents of every insurance company dollar spent goes to operating costs. In my case $365 per year goes from my pocket to the insurance company’s cost of doing business. That’s $560 a year out of my pocket right into theirs. Add into that all the costs that aren’t covered, like in my case the first $2700 worth of bills and it’s a freaking racket. Seriously, do you really think that the government could make it any more FUBAR that it already is? Expand Medicare, outlaw the insurance companies, statutorily and be done with it.
Next week: The drug companies.