Bobby Jindal, Insurance Industry Shill

Since Bobby Jindal has about as much hope of being POTUS as I have of being Pope, I hope the insurance industry gave him a good tip for the pack of lies Jindal published in the Wall Street Journal today. He writes,

The left in Washington has concluded that honesty will not yield its desired policy result. So it resorts to a fundamentally dishonest approach to reform. I say this because the marketing of the Democrats’ plans as presented in the House of Representatives and endorsed heartily by President Obama rests on three falsehoods.

However, what Jindal doesn’t tell you is that he gets his “facts” about the Democrats’ plans from UnitedHealthcare, a health insurance company. Yep, the Lewin Group, which Jindal cites as the “study” claiming the public option will drive private insurance out of business, is a subsidiary of UnitedHealthcare, a fact Jindal does not disclose. The study was commissioned by the Heritage Foundation.

Jindal is especially pathetic, considering that the Lewin Group was outed by McClatchy as an insurance company front a couple of days ago.

Congressman Pete Stark of California fired back (page very slow to load):

“The Lewin Group is paid to produce estimates favorable to each client’s position. As a wholly owned subsidiary of UnitedHealthcare, the country’s largest private insurance company, the Lewin Group’s so-called ‘analysis’ is suspect. The Heritage Foundation got the study they paid for, but it is pure fiction.

“The Congressional Budget Office found that H.R. 3200 increases employer-sponsored insurance and less than 10 million people would choose the public health insurance option by 2019.”

Here’s a point-by-point comparison of the Lewin Group claims versus the CBO estimates.

The rest of Jindal’s carnival pitch is the usual right-wing blah blah blah — giving the poor “help in buying private coverage through a refundable tax credit,” for example. His solution for motivating insurance companies to provide more coverage for people with pre-existing conditions is “Reinsurance, high-risk pools, and other mechanisms can reduce the dangers of adverse risk selection and the incentive to avoid covering the sick.” Segregating people into high-risk pools is going to help them get affordable insurance, how?

Basically, Jindal’s op ed is all word salad; lots of the right buzzwords, but nothing that you could string together to make a coherent policy.

Update: see “Health Insurance Industry Spins Data in Fight Against Public Plan.”

18 thoughts on “Bobby Jindal, Insurance Industry Shill

  1. I’m trying to figure out how Isaiah and his wife, who together clear maybe $20,000 per year, can use a tax credit to buy insurance. The cheapest insurance will cost a couple hundred a month for a $7500 deductible (per person) and $20,000 per family per year max out-of-pocket. Why would they throw money into an insurance policy that gives them no coverage, or at least no meaningful coverage? They will keep the money and stay uninsured, is my guess.

    If we give people money to buy their own private insurance, the coverage they receive will never improve. The insurance agencies will happily take the government subsidy and provide nothing. They will still be allowed to drop you whenever they want.

    I just hope that the Dems don’t stab each other and us in the back over the cost/abortion/etc.

  2. I have to wonder what part of the term “laughingstock” Gov. Jindal doesn’t understand.

    Well, him and soon-ex-Gov. Palin.

    Oh hell, the whole GOP.

    Laughingstock, Republicans– it means you. The day of the flimsy ruse is over.

  3. I love the effort to sell “pooling” as some grand innovation different than what insurance companies originally built their businesses on. That is before they realized they could keep more money by cherry picking who they want to insure.

  4. The GOP has a tendency to project its own shortcomings on to the opposition. If there has ever been a dishonest political party, it is the modern Repubican party. They are so full of sh*t, their eyes are brown. One of the reasons that we have become the Divided States of America is because the GOP lies and lies and lies and cannot have an honest, adult conversation about serious issues.

  5. Is it just me or does Bobby have this Rasputin-like “You are feeling veeery sleepy!” hypnotic-stare expression? I must admit, when he comes on I generally get a wild impulse to smash my TV screen so maybe there’s some anti-liberal, subliminal messaging going on… “You will destroy your TV and kill your famileee…”

    You know, jus’ sayin’s all…

  6. Am I imagining things, or was there a time not very long ago when Jindal was held up as one of the leading lights and intellectual heavyweights of the conservative movement and the Republican party?

  7. Yes, Simple Sam. The other projection I find amusing is the “politically correct” label. In a world of think tanks whose purpose is to further an ideological agenda disguised as a scholarly pursuit if truth, we have many examples empirically verified solutions are rejected because they don’t it the ideology. For example, Howard Dean oversaw a dramatic reduction in teen pregnancy in Vermont. But, since it didn’t include prayer and abstinence (both of which VERY popular among teenagers) it can’t be part of the solution. Compare the infant mortality rate for France vs. the USA and let’s not even talk about Sweden.

    I think what is different about health care is that a lot of us have personal experience or know someone who has lived a health related nightmare. I have seen bankruptcies and deaths and I have a personal story as well. So when someone starts in with the “free market” talk, I politely tell them why they are … well something like that

  8. I am out of the country (sort of) so I haven’t been getting my daily aggravation injection of FAUX news (CNN Asia by the way is way better than our CNN). Yesterday I was dining at a local watering hole and Bill-O was on the tube. He was really over the top with the wing-nut propaganda rhetoric, leftist, socialized medicine, 5 year plans, etc. He was making it sound like the public option was DOA, so maybe there is a good chance it might actually make it, he sounded a little desperate to me. FAUX usually heats up the commie rhetoric just before the wing-nuts are about to go down in defeat. Well hopefully anyway.

  9. The left in Washington has concluded that honesty will not yield its desired policy result. So it resorts to a fundamentally dishonest approach…

    This is right out of Karl Rove, to accuse the opposition of doing exactly what you yourself are doing – in this case, blatant, in your face, lying. Jindal comes across as the biggest weenie and shill the world has ever seen. If he could somehow tone down his innate creepiness, he’d be dangerous.

    Some good news – I don’t remember where I saw it, but someone pointed out that there seems to be less and less debate about a public option. It’s as though the opposition has silently capitulated on this point. Obama seems to be holding fast to this important aspect, and so it’s apparently vanished from the debate.

  10. Let’s see if the public option kicks in before 2013. That might be why they all agreed to it. 4 more years to find a way to kill it, in the meantime.

  11. Sorry, Bobby J. is nothing compared to the professionals. He’s like a tea-bag left in tepid water – weak. Give him time, and experience, and he will bring things to a boil.
    Stopping them from stopping us will be determined by if we can stop them from stoppping us from them stopping us. Or, something like that…
    Jesus, that wasn’t even English, for you know ‘Who’s’ sake…
    Maybe, after that sentence, I should run for office? 🙂
    NAH! Who wants to deal with the clowns who aren’t Franken.

  12. I am going to weigh in on cost because that’s the point where Dems disagree. Health care should be funded multiple ways not through just one source.

    1) Anyone on the public option should pay according to their income with a payroll deduction.

    2) About 60% of employers do NOT offer insurance. This puts employers who DO offer insurance (real insurance) at a competitive disadvantage. Make employers who do not offer REAL insurance kick in.

    3) Tax surcharge on a sliding scale for individuals making over $250K or families over $350K.

    Distributing the burden of cost makes this domething anyone can swallow.

  13. Am I imagining things, or was there a time not very long ago when Jindal was held up as one of the leading lights and intellectual heavyweights of the conservative movement and the Republican party?

    Gypsy, you’re not imagining it. That was right up until Jindal’s post-sort of-SOTU television appearance, which earned him weeks and weeks of mockery. In fact, they’re still chortling over it in parts of Southern California.

  14. I don’t know, Maha, Jindahl probably has a slightly better chance of being POTUS than you have of being Pope. And proving how well he can shill for the insurance cartel is probably helping him on that front, in terms of the GOP corporatist lackey cred. I’m haunted by the memory that Rowan and Martin used the suggestion of “President Reagan” as a joke on their Laugh-in during the 60s.

    Of course, Ronnie didn’t come across like Kenneth the NBC Page, so we may be OK.

  15. moonbat — Jindal is a dweeb. It doesn’t matter who they shill for. Dweebs don’t get elected president.

  16. Funny, I noticed at least 3 to 5 people shilling for the insurance companies lately that have no legitimate reason or past history of being the least bit interested in health or any other insurance. How much money and how low are the scum that the insurance fraudsters are enlisting now?

    Some congresswoman from Tenn is saying no more federal disaster
    aid. Gee, can you spell paid shill for private disaster insurance that will not pay for “acts of god.”

    Micheal Steele the poster boy of the lying Republicans claims in one place that while he was unemployed he paid $20,000 a year for family coverage. In another place, he claims that he spent his three years of unemployment uninsured.

    Anybody else finding low lying scum talking about insurance when they couldn’t tell you carries their personal insurance?

    Actually I’m becoming quite fond of Mr. Steele, he is good for at least one good laugh every other day. And the poor damned Republicans don’t dare fire him, I mean what else have they got than Steele and that Thomas on the Supreme Court. I love thinking about
    all of their racists that are drinking themselves to sleep just pure hating Steele and his comments.

Comments are closed.