To the editor:
I would like to respond to Milt Lauenstein (letter, “Definitions of a true conservative,” Sept. 14) and prove that it is not just “conservative dogma” that the federal Medicare program is inefficient, but it is the truth and I have the cold hard facts to prove it.
Did you know that the Government Accountability Office stated that Medicare is a “high risk program” and do you know why it stated this? It is because the federal government can only audit 5 percent of all Medicare claims and this has led to a terrible amount of fraud and abuse within the Medicare system. Two years ago the news program “60 Minutes,” along with MSNBC, did an investigation of Medicare fraud and discovered that there were more than $60 million in fraudulent Medicare payouts every year!
Here are just some examples. In 2007 a $ 237 million Medicare scheme was found in Miami. In 2011 a $ 251 million claim scheme involving 94 doctors was also found in Florida. In 2011 there were another $295 million in bogus claims made by another 91 criminals. In 2012 107 doctors out of Washington State were accused of making $452 million in false claims. If these facts don’t convince you that the government doesn’t know how to run health care, try this:
In the year 2007, Medicare overspent $400 million by overestimating the nationwide usage of a drug for anemia.
Did you also know that federal spending for Medicare is 7.9 percent, more than double the rate of inflation every year. Now members of public would be quite upset if their private insurance company was this inept in filing claims and payouts. With this much loss no insurance company would be able to survive and would go bankrupt and people would got to jail but do you know what? Since this is the federal government losing all this money, no one will ever go to jail and do you know what even sadder? Each year the government loses $60 billion of the working class taxpayers’ money, but since this is an entitlement program there are no ramifications for any federal government employee.
Did you also know that Medicare will go bankrupt? Medicare is run by the taxes of the working class and its employers. This leads to the problem that there will be fewer people working and more people receiving benefits soon; as our nation ages, the government will have to borrow billions of dollars to pay for the Medicare system. The problem with that is our nation’s debt rating has already gone down twice, leading to higher interest rates on future borrowing and repayments. The financial failure of the Medicare system is already exacerbated by our nation’s highest and longest rate of unemployment since World War II.
The future collapse of the Medicare system was already in play the day the Medicare law was passed in 1965. No entitlement system can survive due to its core value of the redistribution of working class income to others.