Want contraception? Just follow the money (and the special interests)

Well I have to admit that conservatives blew it.  Attacking the Left in response to the Obama Administration’s birth control mandate has done nothing but muddle the issue.

As with all things Obama, they should have just followed the money:

Forget for a minute the religious question and look at who wins big here: Big Pharma. This mandate is not really about condoms or generic versions of “the pill,” which are available free or cheap in lots of places. This is about brand-name birth control drugs and other devices that some consumers swear off because they are too expensive. The Health and Human Services (HHS) mandate requires health-insurance companies provide contraceptive coverage for all “FDA approved contraceptive methods.” It does not insist on generics. And it does not offer any cost containment.

What’s more, the mandate prevents health-insurance companies from having copays or deductibles for the benefit. This is the perfect set up for Big Pharma. Since the drugs will be paid for by a third party (insurance companies, who will pass the cost on to employers and the rest of us), the consumer won’t worry about the price. Expensive brand names will no doubt see demand rise.

A recent Facebook conversation about the subject of birth control with a friend who is an MD/OB-GYN drove this point home for me a couple of weeks ago.  Her biggest satisfaction with the HHS mandate was that it would finally make IUD treatments like Mirena and injectable birth control like Depo-Provera affordable for everyone.

Out of pocket, Mirena costs around $1000 to $1200, which includes the device, a pelvic exam, and the procedure to insert the device.  It is effective for up to five years.   Out of pocket costs for Depo-Provera are around $250 for the initial office visit and injection, with additional office visits/injections every three months that cost around $125 each.  Without insurance, NuvaRing (a soft vaginal ring that is inserted every 4 weeks) and Ortho Evra (a monthly patch) both cost around $960 a year.  If you have limited income, long-term birth control is prohibitively expensive.

But many doctors prefer long-term contraceptives over daily oral contraceptives for patients who are long-term sexually active (i.e. married or in a long-term monogamous relationship).  In addition, doctors commonly prescribe contraceptives to treat ailments like severe acne, severe menstrual cramps/bleeding, and endometriosis.  When they are effective, doctors also prefer long-term contraceptives for the treatment of chronic medical conditions because they eliminate the need for daily compliance.

Here’s where the issue gets complicated.

Feminists and pro-abortion activists have (deliberately, I believe) lumped all contraceptives and their various uses, along with abortifacient drugs and abortion procedures, into euphemistic categories such as “reproductive justice” and “women’s preventive health care.”

Make no mistake – radical feminists and pro-abortion advocates view pregnancy as an unhealthy condition that interferes with women’s lives.  To them, pregnancy is a burden, an impediment, or, in President Obama’s words, a punishment.  The Judeo-Christian tradition completely rejects this view.  Scripture and 2000 years of tradition teach us to regard life as sacred.  Procreation is understood to be the natural result of a physical sexual union.  Human reproduction is a gift from God, a process by which man voluntarily participates in the miraculous creation of new life made in God’s image.

But voluntary participation means that mankind can also choose to circumvent natural biological processes.  We can choose to alter our bodies so that procreation does not occur.  We can also choose to end nascent life.  To the keepers of Christian traditions, these choices amount to a sin against God.  To others, having the ability to make these choices is a fundamental human right that must be guaranteed — and subsidized — by government.

By lumping all of these things together and labeling them “justice” and “health care,” liberals have created a powerful rhetorical weapon.  Question any ingredient in the liberal recipe for “justice” and “health care” and suddenly you are accused of wanting to poison the whole pot.

Abortions, abortifacient drugs, and birth control methods that are used by choice — particularly by single women — for the express purpose of abating the natural consequences of sexual activity have nothing at all to do with “justice,” or with “preventive health care.”  They are elective procedures and treatments, and should remain the responsibility of the individuals who choose to use them.  Government does not have the right to interfere with their use; likewise, it also does not have the right to demand that the public participate in or subsidize them.

The Roman Catholic church has no problem with the use of contraceptives in the treatment of chronic medical conditions, and neither does most anyone else with a lick of common sense.  Nor would most people object to the use of artificial birth control as part of responsible family planning for married couples (though this would obviously violate the standards of the Roman Catholic church).

A responsible Administration would have acknowledged these differences and attempted to seek solutions that guaranteed freedom of choice to both sides, while providing assistance to those who are in need of medical treatment or aid in family planning.

Obviously our current Administration feels no such obligation.  Thanks to the new HHS birth control mandate, Big Pharma wins, as doctors place millions of women on subsidized long-term birth control.  Feminists win, because they have successfully manipulated the government to use its power against the feminist/abortion lobby’s biggest foe – religious institutions, namely the Roman Catholic church.  And the government wins, because it can now begin the process of establishing policies that reduce the population, as a method for controlling health care costs.

Cronyism, favored special interests, big government, and a population duped once again into believing that they will get a great benefit for little or nothing.  That sounds about right for the Obama White House.

________________________

More reading from Jerry Pournelle: “I see no indisputable link between the availability of free contraception to women students in Georgetown and our future prosperity, while I do see a direct and indisputable link between requiring all to pay for that provision and the loss of some part of religious freedom.”  (Thanks to commenter J. Lawson)

More from Cathy Ruse at the WSJ: “Yes, birth-control pills can be prescribed to address medical problems, though that’s relatively rare and the Catholic Church has no quarrel with their use in this circumstance. And the university’s insurance covers prescriptions in these cases.  Still, Ms. Fluke is not mollified. Why? Because at the end of the day this is not about coverage of a medical condition.  Ms. Fluke’s crusade for reproductive justice is simply a demand that a Catholic institution pay for drugs that make it possible for her to have sex without getting pregnant. It’s nothing grander or nobler than that. Georgetown’s refusal to do so does not mean she has to have less sex, only that she has to take financial responsibility for it herself.”

Shortlink:

Posted by on March 6, 2012.
Filed under Abortion, Agitators, Feminism, Health Care.


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  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IZ5BM5GNLA54OADSWGSXAMA7SY Jay

    FFS, those “dang dirty” libs didn’t bring up the 1st Amendment/contraception bad issue.  That was pro-lifers who decided they weren’t done attacking Planned Parenthood and moved to make a strawman argument of how women lost from this legislation.  Then when the women started to revolt, what happens?  Oh yeah, you get Santorum to constantly talk about this and gay sex.  As if that weren’t enough piling on while the libs were reeling, you have Rush Limbaugh beat this dead horse while every conservative blog says how this interferes with the Constitution.

    facepalm

    All you had to do was reign in the party rhetoric and show some facts.  That’s it.  Instead, you let the pro-lifers help you lose public support.  Congratulations, GOP!  You made your party look like a right wing fundamentalist group that has NO connection with women and what might better society in general.  (Yes, having access to contraceptives helps the economy)

    Maybe next time, muzzle the Rush dog.

    • MichaelLaprarie

      Sorry, but this is an issue completely manufactured by the Obama Administration and the Democratic party. 

      I’d challenge you to find any example of a Republican presidential candidate offering any modification to Federal regulations involving birth control BEFORE the HHS mandate was announced.  Stephanopolis tried to sandbag Romney with a birth control question in January and Romney smacked him down, stating that no one wanted to “ban” birth control and wondering where anyone would get such a silly idea.  No other candidate took the bait either.  Santorum has always been a strong social conservative, but again I’d challenge you to find any examples of him pushing a “birth control ban” on the campaign trail.

      Of course now that the HHS mandate has been announced, liberals are free to engage in Democratic politics-as-usual rhetoric, where Republican attempts to simply keep things status quo are redefined as a “cut” or a “ban.”

      • SoBeRight

        Yes, it’s Obama’s fault that Rushbo called Sandra Fluke a slut and a prostitute.

        An Ohio Quinnipiac poll released Monday shows that Romney leads Santorum 38 to 29 percent among women — even though Santorum led among women, 37 percent to 33 percent, in an Ohio Quinnipiac poll released just Friday.

        Santorum slipped from 37 percent to 29 percent (-8 percent) while Romney increased from 33 percent to 38 percent (+5 points).

        While Santorum held his lead over Romney among men, 34 percent to 31 percent, women are now backing Romney. Among women, Romney leads Santorum 38 to 29 percent in Monday’s Quinnipiac poll, compared to a 37 percent to 33 percent lead for Santorum in a poll released just Friday.

        And Santorum’s support from self-described conservatives has fallen sharply, though he still has a slight edge over the more moderate Romney in the Quinnipiac poll. He leads that group 35 percent to 33 percent now, compared to a 40 percent to 27 percent lead three days earlier.

        Now why would Santorum’s support among conservatives ‘fall sharply’ between Friday and Monday – also by 5 percent — 5 percent that went directly from Santorum to Romney — or, put another way, 5 percent that moved from the far right towards the center?

        I think it’s Rushbo and the misogynist tea party male club who have been busily clubbing women for weeks now.

        Maybe that 5 percent realize that the far right position is unelectable.

        Maybe they’re just embarrassed to be associated with right wing assholes like Rush Limbaugh.

        • SoBeRight

          breaking…

          33 advertisers have now dropped Rush Limbaugh: Sleep Number, The Sleep Train, Quicken Loans, Legal Zoom, Citrix, Carbonite, ProFlowers, Tax Resolution, AOL, Bonobos, Sears, Allstate Insurance, Sensa, Bare Escentuals, Vitacost, Hadeed Carpet, Thompson Creek Windows, PolyCom, Service Magic, AccuQuote Life Insurance, Geico, John Deere, Stamps.com, St. Vincent’s Medical Center, Bethesda Sedation Dentistry, Cascades Dental, Philadelphia Orchestra, Goodwill Industries, Heart & Body Extract, Netflix, Downeast Energy, Capitol One, JCPenney, Matrix Direct have pulled ads from the program.

          More Limbaugh posts! More LImbaugh posts! We can’t let these libs get away with protecting sluts and prostitutes.

          Come on! More posts from the all-male club!

  • Vagabond661

    So repeal Obamacare and all this goes away?

  • Vagabond661

    So repeal Obamacare and all this goes away?

  • http://www.rustedsky.net JLawson

    How long until a basic food ration is viewed as a ‘right’?  ADM’s got loads of corn-dollars (as opposed to petro-dollars) just waiting to support the candidate that starts thinking properly on this!

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_G7YIUZMXOD5JGZZTCYMVA75KFU Shadow

       Doctors tell us all to exercise more, will my gym memberships and personal trainers be provided?  Vacations are necessary to reduce stress and anxiety.  Are they to be covered?  Wouldn’t that be nice?  For that matter, work causes stress and anxiety, why don’t we all quit and have the government support us totally? 
      Where does this stop, when we are trillions in debt?

      • http://www.rustedsky.net JLawson

        It stops when the money goes away.  Which will probably be real soon now.

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_G7YIUZMXOD5JGZZTCYMVA75KFU Shadow

           It is already gone.  The whole system is held up with smoke and mirrors and the next lie. It’s gonna get ugly.

  • herddog505

    It’s OK for Big Pharma to “win” in the interests of libs getting their way:

    1.  A “victory” for “women’s rights”;

    2.  Distraction from Barry’s horrible record, especially on the economy (“You many have been out of work for two years, but we really stuck it to those damned women-hating, child-molesting mackerel snappers!”);

    3.  Establish the federal government’s ability to define any form of medication as a “right” that MUST be provided for free to anybody who wants it.

    Big Pharma might win today, but their turn will come.  They are in the position of trying to be eaten last by the crocodile.

    Michael LaprarieOut of pocket, Mirena costs around $1000 to $1200, which includes the device, a pelvic exam, and the procedure to insert the device.  It is effective for up to five years.   Out of pocket costs for Depo-Provera are around $250 for the initial office visit and injection, with additional office visits/injections every three months that cost around $125 each.  Without insurance, NuvaRing (a soft vaginal ring that is inserted every 4 weeks) and Ortho Evra (a monthly patch) both cost around $960 a year.

    Well, now we know where that lying mooch Fluke was getting her prices.  Not only have women a “right” to free contraceptives, they have a “right” to the most expensive ones.

    BTW, after nearly three decades of being told that the Pill and similar forms of BC do nothing to prevent the transmission of social diseases such as HIV, syphillis, etc., what happened to women INSISTING that their partners use a condom?

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IZ5BM5GNLA54OADSWGSXAMA7SY Jay

       1.  A “victory” for “women’s rights”;
      Sure is.  But I have to criticize why so much effort is being put into this rather than the economy.

      2.  Distraction from Barry’s horrible record, especially on the economy

      You’re right, Obama’s record is horrid.  But the Republican positions (even Ron Paul’s would make it worse.  The GOP left out the moderates that may have made the system better such as Huntsman and Johnson, making the front runners people that would never be able to connect with the middle class.  Santorum can do it but he’s the most dangerous as a fundamentalist candidate.  Had all of the candidates focused on the economy, maybe they would have had a shot.  Instead, they got mired down with this social issue and Obama’s sitting pretty with a 50% approval rating against all of them.  Good job breaking it, GOP.

      3.  Establish the federal government’s ability to define any form of medication as a “right” that MUST be provided for free to anybody who wants it.
      Big Pharma might win today, but their turn will come.  They are in the position of trying to be eaten last by the crocodile.

      Have you not been paying attention to the crony capitalist country that the US has become?  Maybe if you looked at your own party and how it’s routinely bought along with the Democrats being spineless cowards, you would see that Big Pharma, Big Oil, and Big Banks have set up a nice little plutocracy with puppet masters as president.
      BTW, after nearly three decades of being told that the Pill and similar forms of BC do nothing to prevent the transmission of social diseases such as HIV, syphillis, etc., what happened to women INSISTING that their partners use a condom?

      Uh huh… And if the condom breaks?  Maybe those women want to have control of their bodies.
      Or maybe they help the workforce in having those pills stop long period cycles, migraines and other health concerns.

      • herddog505

        Wow.  Birth control prevents pregnancies, doesn’t break like a condom, prevents ovarian cancer, stops migraines, and helps women work longer and better!  WOW!  Is there NOTHING it won’t do?

        /sarc

        Oh, wait: it can’t convince Catholic bishops that taking it is sinful and that they don’t want to have to pay for people to do so.  Whether it can convince Uncle Sugar that health care “savings” trump the First Amendment remains to be seen.

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IZ5BM5GNLA54OADSWGSXAMA7SY Jay

          The Catholic church is actually divided on this issue.

          Quite frankly, yours is an odd stance since I never said that and showed some of the beneficial effects of contraceptives and birth control for women.  

          And it’s been proven that the mandates for healthcare have helped the economy for the last few years.  Now you’re going to say that the records don’s speak for themselves?

          • herddog505

            No, I’m pretty sure that the Catholic Church is NOT divided on this issue: the Church’s doctrine on this issue, as I understand it, has been pretty consistent for centuries.

            Now, individual Catholics may be conflicted.  They may even outright disagree with church orthodoxy.  This is between them and the church.

            I’m also not going to disagree that BC has many benefits (among them is that I haven’t got to endure the pitter-patter of little feet in my house).  But that’s beside the point: the Catholic Church does not believe that it should have to pay for them, and I agree with them.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IZ5BM5GNLA54OADSWGSXAMA7SY Jay

            Not only has Planned Parenthood come out on this, but the majority of Catholics have actually stated they support the doctrine.   Catholics United and the Catholics Health Association supported this.

            And now, because of Rush’s outburst young Republican women are supporting Obama’s mandate

            Bear in mind the CHA has 1200 sponsors that they answer to, so that’s a very large organization.  The GOP’s issue with this has shown that they do not care about the issues that affect women.  That is beyond damaging.

             But that’s beside the point: the Catholic Church does not believe that it should have to pay for them, and I agree with them.

            And they don’t.  How many times are you going to gloss over that the Catholic Church is not doing anything differently?  Their health insurance and the insurance providers foot the bill and they’re doing this willingly because it’s great for their bottom line.  No matter how you try to slice this, it’s a good social benefit that the Catholic Church does not have to pay for.  There is nothing different about this.  No amount of ad homs or misdirected posts are going to change that the Catholic Church is not (repeat:  NOT) paying for this healthcare costs when it’s beneficial and makes economic sense for the insurance providers to foot the bill.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ryan-Murphy/100001624276605 Ryan Murphy

    TO a liberal, EVERYTHING is a right, paid for by ‘someone else’ and nothing is a responsibility, paid for by. . yourself.

    • SoBeRight

       Sandra Fluke merely wanted her health insurance, for which she pays the premium, to include female contraceptives.

      The way Catholic organizations typically provide health insurance that includes coverage for male contraception, such as vasectomies.

      But you don’t see the right attacking males who get vasectomies that are covered by their health insurance – no, it’s just women who want the same right as the catholic males who are “sluts”….

      • MichaelLaprarie

        Half-truth.  Fluke is a 30 year old feminist and women’s rights activist.  She specifically enrolled in Georgetown law because she knew their health insurance did not cover elective/recreational contraceptives.  She has been working actively throughout her years as a law student on “reproductive justice” issues.  She also undoubtedly knows that Georgetown’s health policy pays for the use of contraceptives to treat chronic ailments, so obviously that (or long-term family planning, for which vasectomy is a reasonable option) was not her issue.

        Many years ago, one of my female relatives worked at a Catholic high school.  She was single and sexually active.  She complained about the fact that her health insurance didn’t pay for the pill and she had to cough up $30 a month for the prescription.  I told her that if $1 a day bought her pregnancy-free sex, she was getting quite a bargain. 

        • http://www.rustedsky.net JLawson

          Any time you slap a label in front of ‘justice’, what you get usually isn’t.  

        • http://www.rustedsky.net JLawson

          Any time you slap a label in front of ‘justice’, what you get usually isn’t.  

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_G7YIUZMXOD5JGZZTCYMVA75KFU Shadow

             Absolutely right!  That’s two of your quotes today I am passing along on twitter.  Good work.

        • herddog505

          MichaelLaprarie Fluke is a 30 year old feminist and women’s rights activist.  She specifically enrolled in Georgetown law because she knew their health insurance did not cover elective/recreational contraceptives.  She has been working actively throughout her years as a law student on “reproductive justice” issues.

          Lefties will tell you that you’re projecting, that it’s immaterial, that her history and possible motives don’t matter.

          These are, of course, the same lefties who endlessly harp on Rush Limbaugh’s marital history, the history of the Catholic Church with regard to pedophile priests, etc.

      • http://proteinwisdom.com/ McGehee

        You will just keep peddling your lie without regard to the facts, won’t you?

      • Meiji Man

        If Sandra Fluke wants health insurance that covers her contraceptives. Then she is free to research schools that provide that in their coverage, and attend those schools. 

        She is NOT, NOT EVER AND IN NO WAY allowed to force a individual or institution to act against their conscious.  

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_W6UJJOM4PP4XLSBG6N4LROVSQE Retired Military

        Hey StephenSince you feel that the govt is responsible for ensuring that folks should
        be able to exercise their rights even if they cant afford it than the govt
        should have to buy everyone a firearm who wants it. After all the 2nd
        Amendment says it is our right to bear arms.

        And you totally ignore the left calling people sluts whores cunts and twats. Why not speak out against that?

  • http://www.rustedsky.net JLawson

    Jerry Pournelle the SF author’s got some interesting thoughts on the matter.

    http://jerrypournelle.com/chaosmanor/?p=5972

    “Of course we can try to limit our own population growth while building the splendid city on a hill, a shining monument, an example for the rest to follow – as indeed Western Civilization has been since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. As you can easily find from A Farewell to Alms, for most of history most of mankind has been condemned by Malthusian population growth to what we would today consider intolerable poverty for anyone. Even in the most prosperous Western societies most of the population labored hard during daylight hours for six days a week (holidays excepted – perhaps another 20 depending on the country); had little to no health care (not that this was as important as now; until antibiotics physicians were not much better than grandmothers at treating the sick, and until Pasteur and Semmelweis surgeons were often a greater danger than just being left alone; had one change of clothing; ate one meal a day and that mostly starches; and generally lived lives that the most impoverished in the United States would find intolerable. And that is about 90% of the population for thousands of years. The novels of Jane Austen show the splendor of life among the elite but once in a while slip in scenes of what was going on outside the great manors, and why being taken into the manor servants hall was considered a good thing to have happen to your children.

    For nearly two centuries the United States has escaped from that trap. The escape was due at first to freedom combined with the Frontier, nearly limitless land to be had for hard work, land on which one might labor all ones life and pass on to the next generation a life much better than yours; and to the growth of technology, which made a few able to produce goods to be consumed by the many. Freedom, new land, and technology broke the iron rule of Malthus, and even as I found Vogt persuasive I could see that for parts of the world – particularly the part I lived in – he wasn’t strictly accurate. We had population growth along with a rising standard of living for everyone.

    The may no longer be true. There are those who say those heady days when a rising tide floated all boats and even common laborers could look forward to being part of the middle class, and send their children to college have come to an end. We have had our golden age, and the best we can hope for now is to spread the wealth around a bit, but will never be able to make everyone rich.

    But this is not Lake Wobegon, and we have run up against the brutal fact that much of our population is not productive. They may be ‘middle class’ as in Aristotle’s definition, possessing the goods of fortune in moderation, but how they came by that possession is important: to larger and larger numbers, their possessions have not been earned, but given to them by government. This is not a formula for producing a land of the free. Moreover, as the many threaten the few, as the masses threaten the rich, the rich are not without recourse. We all remember the days of the French Revolution, or the early days of the Bolshevik takeover of Russia, but the results were not what the revolutionaries expected. They never are. The French were fortunate to get Bonaparte. The Russians got Stalin.”

    And we, oh lucky us, got Obama.  Who will promise EVERYTHING he possibly can, whether it can be delivered or not, affordable or not, necessary or not.

    Do you want freedom?  Then there’s going to be some things you’ll have to do for yourself. If you want government to do everything for you, then you’ll have to live with the choices goverment gives you… which may or may not match what you want in the first place.

    • Hank_M

       Excellent comment.

      Especially: “Do you want freedom?  Then there’s going to be some things you’ll have to do for yourself.”

      The sad thing is that for a large segment of the population, that [doing for yourself] is out of the question.

      • http://www.rustedsky.net JLawson

        Whether through training or inclination… or from learning from examples around them.
         
        Disqus is being difficult today…  I’m putting in a message – don’t give me a ‘message is a required argument’ error, you misbegotten heap of mismatched bytes!

  • SoBeRight

    And then there’s the inconvenient truth about the catholic clergy’s
    abuse of male children, a horror that was covered up at the highest
    level of the Catholic church.

    And these — hypocrites — have the nerve to tell women what they can
    and can’t have, as the men swallow viagra paid for by their health
    insurance – and get vasectomies on their Catholic health insurance.

    • GarandFan

       Oh look!  A rabbit!

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_G7YIUZMXOD5JGZZTCYMVA75KFU Shadow

       Past wrongs do not justify infringement of Constitutional rights.

      I am in agreement with you on the coverage viagra and vasectomies vs. the coverage of birth control and tubal ligation for women.  Where you are wrong is the government mandating this of employers and providers who object because of their religious beliefs.  For that matter, the government has no authority to mandate this of any employer or insurance provider.  You are (were) free to take your employ or business elsewhere if the coverage doesn’t suit you. 

      You know this so why do you come here each day to argue with the line being fed to us by the Marxists? 

      • http://www.rustedsky.net JLawson

        If he can build up a good enough job record, he might get a promotion to a job that actually has decent benefits.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_W6UJJOM4PP4XLSBG6N4LROVSQE Retired Military

      How many stories have you heard of clergy abuse in the past few years?  2 maybe 3?

      There have been that many in the news this week for teachers yet you say noting about them.

      Lets look at something else

      http://www.nbcnewyork.com/news/local/Manhattan-Teacher-Arrested-for-Groping-Student-Police–140804323.html

      In 2007, students made 619 complaints about sexually
      questionable conduct by school employees. Last year that number was down to 561
      complaints, a 9 percent decreaseGee over 1100 complaints in just 2 years against teachers. 

      Yet the left says nothing.-

      Please show us where the men get viagra on their health care plans and what it has to do with contraception? The church has no policies against ED. It does have policies against abortion and contraception and has had it for decades if not centuries. All of which you refuse to acknoweldge with your strawman.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IZ5BM5GNLA54OADSWGSXAMA7SY Jay


        Please show us where the men get viagra on their health care plans and what it has to do with contraception? 

        Ask Sean Hannity.  He complained how it was a “medical condition” while the entire contraception issue has been argued.  Also, viagra has been covered since early 2002.

        And if you’re going to say that the Catholic church has disagreements then why are the Catholics divided on this issue?  It’s time to stop the partisan politics and focus on something else instead of this useless war on women.

  • JWH

    I’m going to leave aside the argument over religious doctrine.

    I will note, however, one ignored aspect of Ms. Fluke’s testimony:  She said that her friends with chronic conditions found it difficult to obtain their contraceptive medicines because of the burdens placed on them to prove their conditions.  But that’s a side pointHow would Wizbangers feel about some of these accommodations:1)  Amend the rule so that it mandates that health insurers cover contraceptives, but do so subject to the same copays and deductibles applied to other pharmaceuticals and medical treatments.

    2)  Provide the following possible accommodations for religious-affiliated employers (or others with moral objections):

    * Require that contraceptive coverage be offered, but without providing cash benefits.  The policyholder would be required to pay 100 percent of the insurer’s negotiated rate for a particular treatment.  

    * Instead of mandating contraceptive coverage, mandate that the contraceptive coverage be offered as an available add-on to employer-provided coverage.  If the employee elects the coverage, the employee picks up 100 percent of the cost of insurance, and the contraceptive treatments are covered on par with other covered medical expenses.

    * If an employer prefers not to offer contraceptive coverage for moral reasons (or other coverages, for that matter), allow that employer to instead offer a high-deductible health plan coupled with contributions to an employee HSA.  For the sake of argument, say, an employer would match employee HSA contributions on a $.50 per $1 basis, up to 50 percent of the employee’s annual deductible.  At this point, contraceptives are entirely up to the employee, spending his or her own money.

    • herddog505

      It boils down to a moral issue: if one believes that the services being demanded are immoral, it really doesn’t matter what copays, cash benefits, riders, etc. are employed.

      If somebody came to me and asked for money to buy needles so he could shoot up heroin, or to buy child porn, or to donate to the democrat party, or do anything else I find morally reprehensible, should I feel OK if he offers to let me launder the money through a third party, or agree to give him the money if he chips in some fraction of it?

      • SoBeRight

         A woman’s health is not a “moral issue to be decided by the Catholic Bishops”…

        Sorry, but even devout Catholics use birth control.

        • herddog505

          Devout Catholics commit many sins (as do all people).  So?  I don’t suppose you think that, because some devout Catholics lie, cheat, steal, commit adultery, and even murder, the Church should smile upon these things, do you?

          And a woman’s health IS an issue for the Catholic bishops if they are being expected to foot the bill.

      • JWH

        Herd:

        If you look at my proposed compromises, I focus on shifting the cost burden (and the decision to use contraception, or even to purchase the coverage) from the employer to the employee. The HSA proposal takes the contraceptives entirely out of the equation.

        But if I’m reading this right, it doesn’t matter who pays for the contraception. Only that money is being spent on it, and that money at one point passed through the hands of the Catholic Church or of a Catholic person.

        By corollary, does that mean that if you pay me $1,000 to paint your house, you may dictate that I may not subsequently spend that $1,000 on contraception? Or on a healthcare plan that provides contraception coverage to my employees? Or that if I pay an assistant $50 to help paint the house, you may dictate that assistant may not then spend his $50 on contraception?

        • herddog505

          JWHBy corollary, does that mean that if you pay me $1,000 to paint your house, you may dictate that I may not subsequently spend that $1,000 on contraception? Or on a healthcare plan that provides contraception coverage to my employees?

          How you spend your pay is not the issue: the bishops are not forbidding women to take their own money and buy BC.  The bishops object to spending their own money to do so.  The left seems intent on falsely portraying this as the bishops BLOCKING women getting the pill.  The bishops have not told Ms. Fluke or anybody else that they can’t take their money and go to the nearest pharmacy, Planned Parenthood office, or any other place to sells / provides contraceptives and get all they want WITH THEIR OWN MONEY.  The bishops merely decline to pay for it themselves.

          To borrow your analogy:

          — If I pay you $1000 to paint my house, have I also got to buy your lunch, pay for your gas, buy your equipment, or anything else?  Obviously, if I contract to do so, the answer is “yes”, but if I don’t – if we agree ahead of time that, for a flat fee of $1000, you will paint my house – then I really owe you nothing else.  By the same token, I can’t claim that, because I’ve paid you $1000, you also have to wash my car, mow my lawn, or clean my swimming pool.

          — If you wish to hire an employee, the terms of his employment are between you and him.  Now, I might change my mind about employing YOU depending on who you hire, which I think is very reasonably my right to do.

          As (I believe) Retired Military notes, there is one element of this issue that touches on basic contracts: Georgetown, as a condition of “employment” as a student at their university, mandates that the students purchase a health care plan.  That plan, like any other, has limits on what it covers.  One of those limits is birth control and related drugs / procedure (FWIW, Brigham Young has a very similar policy).  When Ms. Fluke entered Georgetown and bought the insurance, she in effect entered into a contract to accept that coverage in exchange for her money.  Now, she wants to alter the contract.  The other party – the university – does not agree to do so.  It seems to me that, barring some evidence that Georgetown tricked her or otherwise did not enter into their side of the contract in good faith, she’s out of luck.  I think she knows this, so she’s going to Uncle Sugar demanding that he rewrite the contract for her.

          • JWH

            Where I’m going with my analogy is this:

            I offered a few ideas above, including a couple that explicitly remove an employer’s responsibility for paying for (or subsidizing) birth-control coverage unless the money has first passed into the custody of the employee. You rejected all of them out of hand. Hence, my admittedly loaded question to you.

            Why do you object, specifically, to working the policies so that 100 percent of the cost of contraceptives is placed on the individual employee, but that employee can pay an insurer’s negotiated rate rather than the retail rate? Why, specifically, do you object to a program that allows an employer to segregate the birth-control coverage from the rest of the policy, then allow the individual employee to purchase such a policy out of his or her own pocket? (Payroll deduction simply being the most convenient method). Why, exactly, do you object to a regime in which an exempt employer is allowed to offer an HSA plan, where the employee is free to do as he or she wishes with the HSA money?

            In several of my scenarios, the bishops are no longer paying for contraception; the burden falls on the employee. I would think that would satisfy this:

            How you spend your pay is not the issue: the bishops are not
            forbidding women to take their own money and buy BC. The bishops object to
            spending their own money to do so.

            You forget one element of contracts, BTW: A person who enters into a
            contract is certainly free to attempt to renegotiate that contract with the
            other parties. This happens all the time. And, IMO, such a party is
            certainly free to petition government to better regulate those contracts if
            a party doesn’t like them.

          • herddog505

            JWHA person who enters into acontract is certainly free to attempt to renegotiate that contract with the other parties. This happens all the time.

            Sure.  The problem is, both parties have to agree to the new contract.  Georgetown (so far) isn’t budging.

            As for the government getting involved: yes, that happens.  I’m not an expert on contract law, but I believe that it’s rare for the government to do it, and mostly rests on some sort of overriding public interest.  Obviously, that’s a matter of opinion, and I’m pretty sure that Barry and the Bagman will argue that passing out BC pills to girls at Catholic schools is in the “overriding public interest”.  To hear libs tell it, BC pills will balance the budget, make women live forever, double US labor productivity rates, AND destroy the Republican Party and Catholic Church.  How could Barry NOT “alter the contract” based on that???

            JWHWhy do you object, specifically, to working the policies so that 100 percent of the cost of contraceptives is placed on the individual employee, but that employee can pay an insurer’s negotiated rate rather than the retail rate?

            A minor correction: I don’t object to anything.  My wife takes BC pills, paid for (minus co-pay) by my health insurance.  As a personal matter, it seems that it would be very reasonable for the Catholic Church to at least provide for “medical necessity”, i.e. women who need BC pills to control / ameliorate such conditions as PCOS could have them as part of their prescription plan.  I even think it reasonable for the Church to have a separate insurance plan for godless, heathen Protestants or other nonbelievers who happen to work for the Church that would cover BC pills.  Your various proposals also seem workable and reasonable.

            However, as I understand it, the Catholic Church doesn’t see it that way, and I am not in favor of them being strongarmed by the government, ESPECIALLY over a medication that is widely available and dirt cheap.  More, I am not in favor of granting the federal government the power (essentially unlimited) to force employers to provide this or that benefit to their employees simply because the president, some cabinet secretary, or some faceless bureaucrat has been convinced that the employees have some “right” to that benefit.

          • JWH

            I’ll confess something at my end:  I grew a bit less sympathetic to the liberal argument in contraception when I researched it a bit more and found the rule wanted the birth-control meds available without copays.

            IMO, that’s just not right.  A number of people take medicines to manage long-term needs, including mental-health issues and AIDS.  While there are programs available to help some of these folks via public or private charity systems, as far as I know no health insurer provides these drugs for “free.”  

            As far as I’m concerned, as long as a person with major depression has to shell out his co-pay every time he refills his antidepressant prescriptions, then people who want to use birth control — whether as a daily oral contraceptive or an injection every few months — should also make copays.Now, my biggest problem with the Catholic bishops is that, IMO, health insurance is part of compensation.  Especially in an era where employees pick up a greater share of their insurance premiums, I think it’s a little presumptuous for an employer to refuse to allow birth-control coverage in the employer-offered plans on the grounds that the employer’s religion doesn’t favor compensation.

            And that really bugs.  Even assuming employees are paying a significant chunk of the cost of the employer-provided insurance, the Catholic bishops still balk.  

            And if the money is the employee’s, then deducting a premium via payroll deduction isn’t promoting licentiousness.  It’s just bookkeeping.  

          • herddog505

            JWHI grew a bit less sympathetic to the liberal argument in contraception when I researched it a bit more and found the rule wanted the birth-control meds available without copays.

            It DOES rankle, doesn’t it?  I think that the libs got ahead of themselves.  For pity’s sake, that NOW harridan is claiming that the Catholic Church and the GOP want to kill women because they don’t want to have free BC.  Sheesh…

            I also say that the entire issue of copays, deductables, and exclusions rather knocks that bottom out of the lib argument that “she PAYS for health insurance so she should get the Pill!”: a health insurance plan doesn’t give the insuree rights to everything under the sun (unless he’s a member of Congress).  Why BC should be special escapes me.  As you say, there are drugs that people take that are rather more vital to their well-being than BC drugs, yet they have to pay for them (my father, for example, must take insulin; he doesn’t get this for free).  People who claim a need for medical marijuana aren’t allowed to have that, and indeed can be thrown into prison for using it.  I’m sure that there are experimental drugs that some sick people would love to have but can’t afford them and / or their insurance plan won’t cover them.  Are their rights being trampled, too?

            I can understand why people are exasperated with the Catholic Church; their attitude towards BC does seem very out-of-step.  However, religion is tricky ground, and we should be very hesitant to start condemning some religion because we don’t agree with it, and we should ESPECIALLY be wary about demanding government coercion of a religious body.

          • JWH

            I also say that the entire issue of copays, deductables, and exclusions rather knocks that bottom out of the lib argument that “she PAYS for health insurance so she should get the Pill!”

            Which is why I like the idea of a “negotiated rate” compromise.  I don’t know the esoterica of birth-control prices, but this blog entry does highlight that some treatments are more costly than others.  And after looking at my EOBs, I think that the “retail” costs of medicine are a complete crock.  My insurer receives a bill for services that cost in excess of 2 grand … and then pays less than $300.  That’s not my copay.  That’s the totaled paid under the “negotiated rate.”  If the discount is more than 90 percent, somebody’s seriously inflating their retail rate.I figure that if the birth control is available at the negotiated rate, but the individual employee has to pay 100 percent of that negotiated rate, there’s enough of a loaf to keep everybody just a little happy.  The Church doesn’t soil its hands by spending its money on contraceptives, and the employee receives services at a price that more closely approximates the market price for such things.

            Also, one caveat on the “copays and deductibles” argument. One of the things to remember is that the copay and deductible are part of what I pay my insurance company for … and people routinely subsidize each others’ habits through insurance. If I have a heart attack tonight, then you’ve just spent your insurance premiums to subsdize my junk-food habit.

          • JWH

            I know you don’t appreciate the Catholic Church being strong-armed by government.  I come from a different direction.  Not opposite, but different.

            I won’t argue that the Catholic Church itself should be perfectly free to run its church as it sees fit.  No argument there.

            But the further you get from the actual church itself, the more skeptical I grow when somebody asserts that his religion should exempt him from a generally applicable law.

            Church-affiliated nonprofit that performs ministry work?  OK.  Church-affiliated hospital?  Depends.  A dry-cleaning business in which Our Lady of Perpetual Sorrows owns a large minority stake?  A dry-cleaning business run by somebody who just happens to be a Catholic?  A devout Catholic?  A CEO Catholic?  A lapsed Catholic?

            I recall somebody I knew in college.  This person once said that “God created all races beautiful,” and therefore this person was against interracial marriage, and held that stance on religious grounds.  Now I’m trying to imagine this person owning a restaurant and refusing to serve an interracial couple, citing to religious beliefs regarding marriage.  

            Setting aside libertarian arguments about businesses, it has been well-established that a state government can mandate that restaurant owners cannot discriminate against customers based on race. Should this person get a religious exemption?  I think the answer is no.  While he’s perfectly free to run a racist church as he sees fit, he is not free to claim exemption from a law that applies to everyone else when that law concerns the intensely secular activity of serving cheeseburgers.

          • JWH

            By the same token, I can’t claim that, because I’ve paid you $1000, you also have to wash my car, mow my lawn, or clean my swimming pool.

            I once read a funny anecdote about this.  A little old lady hired a plumber to fix her sink, and was surprised to see the charge for two hours of labor when he spent only a half-hour fixing the sink.  

            The plumber patiently explained to her that his company charged a minimum of two hours for all house calls.  The little old lady, her eye glinting dangerously said, “Let me get this straight.  I paid you for two hours.  And now you’re not going to work for two hours?”  

            Gulp.  ”Yeah … ”

            Five minutes later, the plumber was raking leaves … 

    • herddog505

      It boils down to a moral issue: if one believes that the services being demanded are immoral, it really doesn’t matter what copays, cash benefits, riders, etc. are employed.
       
      If somebody came to me and asked for money to buy needles so he could shoot up heroin, or to buy child porn, or to donate to the democrat party, or do anything else I find morally reprehensible, should I feel OK if he offers to let me launder the money through a third party, or agree to give him the money if he chips in some fraction of it?

  • SoBeRight

    Obama offered the Catholic Bishops an out. Let the insurance companies pay for the contraceptives.

    But no, the right took up the flag of “show no compromise” that has characterized the official GOP response to each and everything Obama does – proving it wasn’t a question about who had to pay for it after all – it was all about denying women access to contraceptives through their health insurance because that’s the way the all-male club wanted it..

    The all male club decided women didn’t need that option, even though men had access to male contraception and viagra through the very same health plans.

    Obama’s compromise was — a compromise.But the bishops wanted a fight instead.

    Well, be careful what you wish for…

    • herddog505

      The Georgetown health plan does not cover Viagra or similar drugs (see the link, page 29, para 19(h)) nor does it cover tubal ligation (page 29, para 21).

      http://studentaffairs.georgetown.edu/insurance/premierplanbooklet.pdf

      [EDIT]

      As for the “compromise”, it basically amounts to:

      “Oh, you don’t want to pay for that? Fine; give the money to to him and let HIM pay for it.”

      Unfortunately for Barry, the Catholic bishops aren’t stupid enough to fall for this transparent third-party scheme.

      I realize that part of the lefty “argument” relies on the fantasy that – somehow – women are being denied something that men get, but this is not the case.

      • SoBeRight

        So tell us, Catholic Bishops and GOP, how is the “show no compromise” thing working out for you?

        ….Now that you’re not stupid enough to fall for Obama’s tricks.

        Oh, wait.

        lol…

        • herddog505

          Having found that your assertion about the CC paying for Viagra and tubal ligation is false, you’re reduced to, “HAH-HAH!  You stood by your principles and lost!  SUCKERS!”???

          Shallow…

          • SoBeRight

             Actually I was waiting for one of your fellow conservatives to correct you.

            Tubal ligation is a procedure whereby a woman’s fallopian tubes are tied.

            You’re right, female birth control, like tubal ligation, si not covered.

            Vasectomies are.

            That’s why you couldn’t find “vasectomy” under the list of exclusions.

            It’s ok, not a big mistake – knowing the difference between a tubal ligation and a vasectomy….

            And apparently your fellow conservatives either (a) are happy to let your ignorance blow in the wind without correction, or (b) your fellow conservatives don’t know the difference either.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_W6UJJOM4PP4XLSBG6N4LROVSQE Retired Military

            Check the other thread.  Vasectamies are not covered moron.  But keep repeating the lies.

          • herddog505

            DELETED BY AUTHOR WITH ENDLESS APOLOGIES

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IZ5BM5GNLA54OADSWGSXAMA7SY Jay

            Wow herddog… A little bit of misaimed vindictive isn’t it?

          • herddog505

            Yes, it was.  You cannot imagine my embarrassment.  I cannot apologize enough.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_W6UJJOM4PP4XLSBG6N4LROVSQE Retired Military

            I didnt see it.  But since I am a conservative I can understand when an honest mistake happens unlike the idiot libs on the board who choose outrage over a mistake instead of an explanation.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IZ5BM5GNLA54OADSWGSXAMA7SY Jay

            By no means do I want to repeat what was said.  Herddog just lost his cool.  That’s all I’ll say about the issue and it’s dropped.

          • herddog505

            Well, I am very sorry and apologize to all concerned.

          • JWH

            Careful.You’re about to loseadvertisers.

          • herddog505

            Sigh… Let’s try this again.  The following are explicitly not covered:

            Viagra and similar drugs, vasectomies, AND tubal ligation.

            Do read the link, will you?

      • SoBeRight

         Who said anything about tubal ligations?

        We were talking about viagra and vasectomies.

        Both covered.

        Male concerns are covered.

        Female concerns aren’t.

        • herddog505

          No, they aren’t.  Follow the link and look at the paragraphs I note.

          • Hank_M

             I doubt he’ll bother following the link and finding out he’s wrong.

            Nevertheless, thanks for the pointer. It’s always good to have the facts.

          • Walter_Cronanty

             Zgo is such a lying piece of crap.  He has been told, repeatedly, on this thread and others, that Georgetown’s health plan does not cover what he says it covers.  Yet, he continues with his lies.  I don’t normally favor bans, but proven liars add nothing to the conversation.

          • Evil Otto

            It wouldn’t be the first time he was banned from here.

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_W6UJJOM4PP4XLSBG6N4LROVSQE Retired Military

          Where are the condoms covered?  It is a birth control device.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IZ5BM5GNLA54OADSWGSXAMA7SY Jay


        Unfortunately for Barry, the Catholic bishops aren’t stupid enough to fall for this transparent third-party scheme.

        So which to believe; the practicioners of the faith that support contraceptives or the bishops who seem out of touch?

        • herddog505

          Would a father who likes to drink and f*cked around when he was a young man be “out of touch” if he told his teenage daughter that he doesn’t want her drinking or f*cking around?

          By the way: religious leaders are usually “out of touch”.  To a great extent, it’s part of their job to be “out of touch”: a minister’s job isn’t to look around, see what most of his congregation likes to do, and preach that it’s OK.  Rather, it’s his job to tell them what they OUGHT to do and, to the extent that he can, help them stay on that path.  That would include, I think, NOT giving them money to go out and sin.  Or do you think that the average minister should use church funds (or even his own cash) to:

          — Pay for a congregant to get a hotel run to cheat on his wife (lots of Christian commit adultery!);

          — Pay for a congregant to buy porn (lots of Christians look at porn!);

          — (Southern Baptist) Pay for a congregant to get knee-knocking drunk (lots of Christians drink!)?

          The argument “it’s OK because other people do it” is (A) a classic case of defining deviancy down and (B) something most people learn ISN’T a good reason from their mothers when they are in grammar school.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IZ5BM5GNLA54OADSWGSXAMA7SY Jay


            Rather, it’s his job to tell them what they OUGHT to do and, to the extent that he can, help them stay on that path.

            Congratulations, you’ve just explained sheep being led to the wolves’ den.

            That would include, I think, NOT giving them money to go out and sin.

            Which hasn’t come from the church in the first place but okay…

            Pay for a congregant to get a hotel run to cheat on his wife (lots of Christian commit adultery!);

            Might want to read your history about what nunneries used to be.

             Pay for a congregant to buy porn

            Pfft.  Irrelevant.  I love the shock tactics but they get a little wearing.  What I’d be concerned about is having a group deny others the knowledge of sexuality at all so much that it warps these people into trying to shame others into believing the same way.  I’m confident about my own beliefs.  I don’t need anyone else trying to shove their beliefs down my throat (Santorum).

             Pay for a congregant to get knee-knocking drunk 
            Again, irrelevant.  People drink for a number of reasons.  The best a priest is supposed to do is help his “flock” overcome their particular vices and demons.  Not pay for their vices.  

            The argument “it’s OK because other people do it” is (A) a classic case of defining deviancy down and (B) something most people learn ISN’T a good reason from their mothers when they are in grammar school.

            Except that’s a false argument you created in response to a simple question.  Quite amazing.

            A majority of Catholics and women actually agree with the mandate.  Meanwhile, the GOP is losing on this issue with the likes of Santorum and Limbaugh speaking out and making false claims.  Sure, we’ve spent quite a few posts on this issue to keep the conservative base riled up.  And yet, it’s making Obama’s case all the better.  So keep going herddog.  I know you’re smarter than this.  You must see the futility in continuing down the same path that has already been tread for the past few weeks to no effect.  It’s an argument of futility.

          • herddog505

            So, let those Catholics who disagree with their church either (A) buy their own BC and shut up about it or else become members of another church.  As I understand the Catholic Church (and most churches in matters of orthodoxy), it’s not a democracy.

            Also, I’m really not that concerned whether or not this issue helps or hurts Barry politically, or, more exactly, my opinion is not based on that.  I simply do not think that the federal government has or ought to have the power to coerce an organization, especially a church, to provide some benefit to its employees because the government claims that it is their “right”.  If your side wins, I will be very sorry (I think that, ultimately, many of us will be), but I’m not going to alter my opinion based on polls or predicted election results.

            As for your views on churches, ministers, and what they are or are supposed to be… Well, that’s a matter of opinion.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IZ5BM5GNLA54OADSWGSXAMA7SY Jay


            So, let those Catholics who disagree with their church either (A) buy their own BC and shut up about it or else become members of another church.

            And yet again, you’re not directly discussing the topic at hand.  They want to have access to those options and choices.  Economically speaking, it helps.

            Religiously speaking, it’s much better than the fetus being aborted.

            Legislatively speaking, the insurance companies win because the other option (baby and healthcare for  years on that baby) is more expensive.

              I simply do not think that the federal government has or ought to have the power to coerce an organization, especially a church, to provide some benefit to its employees because the government claims that it is their “right”.

            Which would be a great position had it not been the position of the GOP before Santorum opened his mouth.  Tha’ts the issue here.  You have had a number of Republicans regress in their positions even though they supported stronger mandates in their state.  Also, if you believe that giving money and options is a coercion or a force, then have the Catholic church give back their 2/3 funding from the government.  I just find this absolutely ridiculous.  Instead of an argument about Holder having just admitted he can kill Americans anywhere, or how our democracy is usurped, we’re here arguing about birth control.  What a great site to take a popular topic, grind it into the ground, and decide not to run actual up to date stories about what has more impact on the conservative agenda.

             If your side wins–

            Don’t have a side.  Stop polarizing.

            –but I’m not going to alter my opinion based on polls or predicted election results.

            Not asking you to.  Just telling you what’s happening as the conservatives continue to push on a losing issue.

            As for your views on churches, ministers, and what they are or are supposed to be… Well, that’s a matter of opinion.

            So is thinking that the GOP will win on this issue and judge it based on the 1st Amendment instead of if it will help with public health concerns.  But hey, if you think they can win, I’m sure there would be less opposition to this.

          • JWH

            — Pay for a congregant to get a hotel run to cheat on his wife (lots of Christian commit adultery!);
            — Pay for a congregant to buy porn (lots of Christians look at porn!);
            — (Southern Baptist) Pay for a congregant to get knee-knocking drunk (lots of Christians drink!)?

            Must …. not … make … televangelist … joke.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_G7YIUZMXOD5JGZZTCYMVA75KFU Shadow

       I am curious what field you work in.  I don’t believe you own your own business, you don’t understand the oppression put upon them by government.
      Will you change your opinions when the government imposes requirements on those who employ you and forces them to close their doors?
      This argument is entirely about freedom vs. government tyranny.  Government control will come to your door too if not stopped.

      • SoBeRight

        I don’t have a job. I live in my mother’s basement. Just ask the other commenters….

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_G7YIUZMXOD5JGZZTCYMVA75KFU Shadow

           Have you just confirmed that or you evading my question?

          • SoBeRight

             right.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_W6UJJOM4PP4XLSBG6N4LROVSQE Retired Military

      If Obama wants a fight with the Bishops he may not like the consequences.

    • MichaelLaprarie

      Not much of a compromise unfortunately.  Catholic-affiliated organizations (schools, hospitals, clinics, social service providers, etc.) are generally non-profits, and a significant number are self-insured.  So “letting the insurance companies pay” is worthless. 

      Also, the bishops are smart enough to know that they will still be the ones paying for coverage mandates through increased premiums and other fees.  There’s no such thing as a free lunch.

  • ackwired

    Bingo.  Thanks for pointing this out.  The corporatocracy strikes again.  When will the left wing and right wings realize that the hand in their pocket does not belong to the opposing extremist that they look upon as their enemy?

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_G7YIUZMXOD5JGZZTCYMVA75KFU Shadow

       No corporation can put its hand into my pocket unless I enter into business with them.  The government does so with force. Both parties have increased the amount taken from me, one much more so than the other.

      • ackwired

        A good share of that tax money that you resent paying is going to subsidize the corporations.  The corporations fund the politicians who subsidize the corporations.  You are right about both parties being involved.  In fact, they compete for the corporate campaign money.

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_G7YIUZMXOD5JGZZTCYMVA75KFU Shadow

           I am against subsidies but they lower the cost of research, development, and production for all of us so that isn’t a justification for blaming them for our economic woes.  The problems they cause are enabled by politicians who profit from corruption.  The root of and  continuation of the evil that is consuming our country lies with politicians. 

          • ackwired

            I agree that it would not be right to blame government subsidies of corporations for our current economic problems, and a fraction of them are involved in research and development.  However, they also are used to reduce costs and they make it difficult or impossible to compete against the subsidized companies.  I think it is a mistake to see what is happening as “crony capitalism” where some crooked politicians are helping their “friends”.  I think it is a system that has evolved where only corporations have enought money to fund elections, and that corporate money is only available to those who are willing to play the game.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_W6UJJOM4PP4XLSBG6N4LROVSQE Retired Military

    I will make this argument here in this thread as I did on the other.

    Fluke had a contract with the school and insurance provider.  That contract states she must pay x to receive Y services.    BC is not one of those services.  So therefore she DOES not pay for BC via her premiums to the insurance company. 

    You cannot unilaterally change a contract.  If you could than yo could sign a contract with a builder and after he was done with your house you could change it so he would have to build a bigger house at no extra cost.

    She is a 30 year old law student.  One would assume she has read a contract she has signed and understand that she cant unilaterally change it.

    On the other hand there is nothing that is stopping her from buying supplemental insurance to pay for her BC and noone, including the Bishops or the church is preventing her from doing this nor or they even trying to stop her from doing it.

    THe lefts argument is totally bogus and doesnt even being to pass the common sense test of contract law.

    In addition, the left has stated that BC should be available from every insurance company becuase the cost of it would be covered by fewer unwanted pregnancies.  They have shown no studies to back this up.  In addition, the argument could then be made that all insurance companies should have to pay for all men’s condoms as they not only reduce unwanted pregnancies but also help prevent STDs both of which would produce  the savings which Selibus talked about.  Yet you dont hear anyone saying condoms for the guys.  Sexism on display.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IZ5BM5GNLA54OADSWGSXAMA7SY Jay


      They have shown no studies to back this up.

      Guide to womenomics:

      It seems that if higher female labour participation is supported by the right policies, it need not reduce fertility. To make full use of their national pools of female talent, governments need to remove obstacles that make it hard for women to combine work with having children. This may mean offering parental leave and child care, allowing more flexible working hours, and reforming tax and social-security systems that create disincentives for women to work.

      What the US owes contraception:

       By freeing women up from unplanned and unwanted pregnancies, women are able to complete education and stay in the workforce — plus they usually have less work waiting for them at home.
      The pill was first cleared for contraceptive purposes in the 1960s. Just five years later, 6.5 million women were taking it. By 1973, that number hit 10 million. Unsurprisingly, birth rates fell significantly during the same time period. The birth rate in the 1950s and early 1960s was 118 births per 1,000 women aged 15-44. By 1980, that rate had fallen by almost 75 percent, to 68 births per 1,000 women. With a safe, legal, and accessible drug that helped women plan and space out their pregnancies, births dropped dramatically.

      Research consistently demonstrates a link between decreased fertility thanks to contraception and increased female employment. And right on cue, women, freed up from unwanted child bearing and child rearing, consequently flooded the workforce after the pill became widely accessible.

      The economic impact of the pill:
      Indeed, as the economist Betsey Stevenson has noted, a number of studies have shown that by allowing women to delay marriage and childbearing, the pill has also helped them invest in their skills and education, join the work force in greater numbers, move into higher-status and better-paying professions and make more money over all…

      A study by Martha J. Bailey, Brad Hershbein and Amalia R. Miller helps assign a dollar value to those tectonic shifts. For instance, they show that young women who won access to the pill in the 1960s ended up earning an 8 percent premium on their hourly wages by age 50.
      Such trends have helped narrow the earnings gap between men and women. Indeed, the paper suggests that the pill accounted for 30 percent – 30 percent! – of the convergence of men’s and women’s earnings from 1990 to 2000.

      States resisting Affordable care act have highest uninsured

      Shall I continue?

       In addition, the argument could then be made that all insurance companies should have to pay for all men’s condoms as they not only reduce unwanted pregnancies but also help prevent STDs both of which would produce  the savings which Selibus talked about.

      Because no one is saying buy men’s condoms or buy women contraceptives.  Nice ad hom though.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_W6UJJOM4PP4XLSBG6N4LROVSQE Retired Military

        Jay

        I amend my statement.  I hadnt seen any such studies. This doesnt change the fact that women have access to birth control without certain insurance companies or businesses paying for it.  Also I do not have the time to read the studies you cited nor determine the legitamacy of them.  

        .”Because no one is saying buy men’s condoms or buy women contraceptives”

        Why arent they?  Both items are birth control devices.   In addition, condoms prevent STDs.    Yet you say it is an ad hominim attack when a condom is no different in the function than the pill for the most part.  You still did not address why condoms are not covered as they are birth control (unless you want to argue that they arent).

        Why should women get birth control covered and not men?

        In additon, you never addressed the basic concept of my argument.  Fluke has a contract with the school and the insurance company.  She is trying to change that contract.  You also didnt address my comment about how Ms Fluke’s argument is no different from me giong to a Muslim school demanding a 10k suite to live in and Prime rib and pork at every meal.  After all I paid for the room and board. (this argument was made on the other thread).

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IZ5BM5GNLA54OADSWGSXAMA7SY Jay


          Why arent they?

          What I was criticizing was your “begging the question” argument that insurance should pay for men.  Essentially, women have two things different that contraceptives cover that aren’t covered by male anatomy.  Now I’m sure that there are some healthcare coverages that actually cover viagra.  However, women might use contraceptives for health reasons.  Long periods that are shortened with oral contraceptives, protection of cancer of the ovaries, Protection against pelvic inflammatory disease, and reduction of the risk of an ectopic pregnancy, are a few reasons why virtually all women use contraception.

          Yet you say it is an ad hominim attack when a condom is no different in the function than the pill for the most part.

          There’s a ton of difference as shown above.  A condom can be used for preventing STDs but it ignores the other benefits that most women may have to prevent forms of disease.  It’s why this argument about “1st Amendment rights” seems so out of touch.  the closest equivalent for men would be Viagra and yes, there are stories about how women have had to fight to have BC and Contraceptives covered even though it’s been beneficial to insurance companies to have women covered.  Unfortunately, condoms don’t address male health concerns.  That’s just a political smear on women that seriously needs to stop happening.

            Fluke has a contract with the school and the insurance company.  She is trying to change that contract.

          After looking at the results of wanting to change the argument, I have to agree with what she said.  This is a woman’s health issue that needs discussion and dialogue.  That isn’t coming from “The Hill” on this issue.  And why shouldn’t she be allowed to show, based on the merits of her argument, that the contract needs to change?

          You also didnt address my comment about how Ms Fluke’s argument is no different from me giong to a Muslim school demanding a 10k suite to live in and Prime rib and pork at every meal.

          Because Ms Fluke’s arguments show how a friend of hers could have avoided undue suffering from that lack of access.  Because over 99% of women use contraception, not just for sexual activity, but for health reasons.  Because it’s insensitive to try to compare Ms Fluke asking for access that could have saved some women unnecessary pains, where the results could be very close to life threatening, no matter their sexual preferences or sexual activity status.  Because I doubt highly this is some free handout given that it keeps women in school to study and become better at their chosen careers, allows them to spend less time in the hospital, and shows a lack of understanding for Republicans on this issue.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_W6UJJOM4PP4XLSBG6N4LROVSQE Retired Military

            Jay
            Actually Georgetown gives BC pills for certain medical conditions.  THe friend cited qualfied and chose not to take them. See my post below ref her friend.

            Also the basic question still remains unanswered.

            If you dont like the health care that your school or job provides why not go to a different school or job? Why not buy supplmental insurance for specific conditions? You can say costs but it has been shown that slmody sll the women in the US get their BC for via health plans or other options. Planned Parenthood and Walmart for example.

            And again I disagree with your argument about condoms. They are birth control devices and help stop the spread of diseases to include AIDS. Yet noone is talking about them being made free via health care plans. This is sexism pure and simple.

            Both birth control pills and condoms prevent unwanted pregnancies and have additional medical benefits. You state viagra is an apt example but that does not prevent unwanted pregnancies.

            BTW might I say it is refreshing to have a decent conversation about this instead of having to deal with the rabble that Stephen spews out.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_W6UJJOM4PP4XLSBG6N4LROVSQE Retired Military

    Here is one thing about women whose health plans dont cover birth control

    http://cnsnews.com/news/article/hoyer-takes-fluke-her-word-3000-birth-control

    However, as CNSNews.com has confirmed, birth control pills are available for as little as $9 per month for people without health insurance at the Target pharmacy just three miles from the Georgetown Law school campus where Fluke attends. Target offers Tri-Sprintec, the generic form of the birth-control pill Ortho Tri-Cyclen.
    A CVS pharmacy only two blocks from the Georgetown Law campus also sells a month’s supply of the same generic birth control pills for $33.

    Gee that seems a lot less than $3000 over 4 years.

    In Flukes own words

    http://www.whatthefolly.com/2012/02/23/transcript-sandra-fluke-testifies-on-why-women-should-be-allowed-access-to-contraception-and-reproductive-health-care/

    “A friend of mine, for example, has polycystic ovarian syndrome, and she has to take prescription
    birth control to stop cysts from growing on her ovaries. Her prescription is
    technically covered by Georgetown’s insurance because it’s not intended to
    prevent pregnancy.

    So here you have a 30 year old lesbian law student who is also a birth control advoctate attending a Catholic university and complaining about the contract that she willingly signed which doesnt do what she wants.  Why not simply go to another school that offers the coverage that she wants.

     

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IZ5BM5GNLA54OADSWGSXAMA7SY Jay

        They are birth control devices and help stop the spread of diseases to include AIDS.
      Yes, they are.  But they have nothing to do with women’s health issues for the express conditions I’ve stated.  Yes, they help to prevent certain STDs and are used as birth control devices.  No question.  But you’re ignoring all of the other health reasons I’ve stated and going around in a circular logic back to STDs, which doesn’t help the other health issues.  I’ve acknowledged the two issues you’ve stated.  Now answer how a condom helps the other issues I’ve stated.

      If you dont like the health care that your school or job provides why not go to a different school or job? Why not buy supplmental insurance for specific conditions?

      …  Are you serious?  Georgetown is a school that she chose to go to because it has a good (what I assume) law course and is highly credited.  Now you want women to make a choice between their healthcare concerns and their educational concerns.  That seems like a pretty unnecessary choice if she can show through the effect of her argument why female health concerns show she shouldn’t make that choice.

      You can say costs but it has been shown that slmody sll the women in the US get their BC for via health plans—

      That’s the argument right here.  Using Wal-mart as an example when it could be very inconvenient to go to it really makes this argument pretty ridiculous.  Let’s say you go to Georgetown and there are few medical options outside of the campus.  Should any woman have to drive more than 10 miles, it’s going to be very expensive to go, get their health care needs, then drive back.  Then you have the difficulty of online retail which could be another barrier.  The best barrier would be to allow medical coverage on campus then let the woman have a choice.

      A CVS pharmacy only two blocks from the Georgetown Law campus also sells a month’s supply of the same generic birth control pills for $33.

      So I’m to believe $1660 in 4 years is small time for these generic pills?  On a scholarship, that’s a hard pill to swallow.  Remember, not all of the students attain scholarships and can pay for these pills as Fluke has stated:

      “Without insurance coverage, contraception, as you know, can cost a woman over $3,000 during law school. For a lot of students who, like me, are on public interest scholarships, that’s practically an entire summer’s salary. 40% of the female students at Georgetown Law reported to us that they struggle financially as a result of this policy.
      “One told us about how embarrassed and just powerless she felt when she was standing at the pharmacy counter and learned for the first time that contraception was not covered on her insurance and she had to turn and walk away because she couldn’t afford that prescription. Women like her have no choice but to go without contraception.
      “Just last week, a married female student told me that she had to stop using contraception because she and her husband just couldn’t fit it into their budget anymore. Women employed in low-wage jobs without contraceptive coverage face the same choice.

      Also, you’re twisting her words:

      “When this exception does exist, these exceptions don’t accomplish their well-intended goals because when you let university administrators or other employers rather than women and their doctors dictate whose medical needs are legitimate and whose are not, women’s health takes a back seat to a bureaucracy focused on policing her body.
      “In 65% of the cases at our school, our female students were interrogated by insurance representatives and university medical staff about why they needed prescription and whether they were lying about their symptoms.
      “For my friend and 20% of the women in her situation, she never got the insurance company to cover her prescription. Despite verifications of her illness from her doctor, her claim was denied repeatedly on the assumption that she really wanted birth control to prevent pregnancy. She’s gay. So clearly polycystic ovarian syndrome was a much more urgent concern than accidental pregnancy for her.
      “After months paying over $100 out-of-pocket, she just couldn’t afford her medication anymore, and she had to stop taking it.

      So her health concerns were the issue here, not a pregnancy.  But you’re inviting a league of lawyers into the equation when this should be about a woman and her doctor.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_W6UJJOM4PP4XLSBG6N4LROVSQE Retired Military

    Dman,  I had  a long page written out and just lost it due to accidentally hitting the wrong page.

    Let me give you an abbreviated version

    This discussion in general is being argued on 2 different subjects.  Fluke as a single entity and Fluke arguing for women in general.

    Let me try to address both.
    a. Fluke as an individual
    1.  She is gay so she doesnt have to worry about unintended pregnacies other than possibly rape.  Which in and of itself is a valid argument but lets not confuse matters more.
    2.  She hasnt stated she has any medical issues (that I know of) and it seems like it would be general knowledge if she had because she gladly spread her friends issues all over the news.
    3.  She is a 30 year old activist who is attending a high priced law school.  The Target mentioned was 3 miles away.  Surely she can afford the gas to go there.    If she wants seperate insurance for just BC than hey I am sure that she can do that as well.   If not than maybe she needs to reorder her priorities like say put law school on hold, get a job, and pay for things which matter the most to her.  It seems she wants the best of both worlds and it generally doesnt happen that way.  In short, she is not Naive and most likely knew exactly what she was doing and did it for a reason.  Again I base that on her history.

    b. Fluke as an activist and arguing for other women.
    1. Most college age women under the age of 26 are still on their parents health care plans so this takes care of (at a guess) 90% of the college population of women.
    2.  $1600 over a 4 year period isnt an outrageous sum to pay for anything especially when you are gonig to a high priced school even on a scholarship.    Get a part time job working 2 hours a week will make you much more than the $33 a month ($56 pretaxes actually) even at minumum wage.
    Since you want to bring up Viagra.  I called up Walmart and asked how much it was with my medial plan.  $7 a pill.  lets see say you have sex 1 time a week (for college age people I think you agree that this on the low side) and you have $33 a month there.  It is also unrealistic to compare Viagra with BC pills as most college age kids dont legally use Viagra.  Condoms however, are a different subject.

    3.  There are appeals to health care decisions.  GET A LAWYER and fight it. Others have and others will.  Stop looking to big daddy govt for everything. 
    4.  Name one health care plan that does everything you want it to do and let me know who offers it.  My point being that health care insurance companies are in business to make a profit.  Drop an additional cost on them (BC for everyone) and everyone’s rates are going up so she is asking for others to pay for her (and other women’s healthcare),

    Flukes statement
    “One told us about how embarrassed and just powerless she felt when she was standing at the pharmacy counter and learned for the first time that contraception was not covered on her insurance and she had to turn and walk away because she couldn’t afford that prescription. Women like her have no choice but to go without contraception”

    A. here you have a woman going to college who didnt ask or read her health care information prior to signing up. Presumeably a law student.
    b. That last sentence of hers is a lie but the press, and the left refuse to call her on it as I have ponited out several options which are available. Why? Because it furthers her and their agenda.

    More of Fluke’s statment

    ““Just last week, a married female student told me that she had to stop using contraception because she and her husband just couldn’t fit it into their budget anymore. Women employed in low-wage jobs without contraceptive coverage face the same choice.”

    Again a lie. You cant tell me that $8 a month is going to kill anyone. I can go out and collect cans from garbage cans and get $8 a month.

    Ref Insurance companies denying claims.  We just had a doctor in Texas indicted on over $300 million in medicare fraud.  As far as Flukes friend.  She wouldnt be the first college woman to lie to get birth control covered by her insurance.   Does that make it right?  No.  Does that mean you have to change the ENTIRE system to address isolated issues.  NO.

    The other point of this triangle is the Obama administration.   They have specifically said that this is about women’s health and unwanted pregnancy.  Condoms prevent unwanted pregnancy and since it stops the spread of various STDs for both parties it is a women’s health issue as well.  Yet you hear nothing from Obama and his peoiple about Condoms being covered by a health care plans as a preventive item.   I contend this is because Obama was showing poorly on the women’s vote and he wanted to use this to shore up his support.  If Obama was truly for stopping unwanted pregnancies and helping women’s health (instead of using it as a political issue) than condoms would definitely be on the table.

    I am still of the opinion that if you want something bad enough   you will find a way to get it legally and without having to resort to papa govt to get it.  I am not saying that that last clause desribes your way of thinking.   I do think it is the lefts (and with that I include Fluke)  general way of doing things.  Not everyone on the left just most of the ones on the left. 

    In short,  I think we will have to agree to disagree on both the facts and motives behind the parties involved.

    But again.  Nice conversation. I thank you.