Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Stirrin' the Pot at the Savannah Morning News

Big News Folks.

The Savannah Morning News has seen fit to endorse democrat Mary Squires in the Commissioner of Insurance race. I had a couple of things to say about that.

The readership is encouraged to participate as well.

Here's the post:

Greetings All,

Congratulations on selecting a candidate to back in the Insurance Commissioner's race. I find it troubling that you picked the one issue in this race that's a non-issue. Georgia's health insurance mandates are regulated by the Commissioners office like every other aspect of insurance in Georgia and the Commissioner's influence on the matter starts and stops there.

Our Health Insurance Mandate system has been cobbled together over the years by self serving legislators, rent seeking corporations, special interest groups and single issue activists. The current argument and political leverage point for Mrs. Squires is that her opponent republican Ralph Hudgens wants to remove access to preventative medical care from every woman in Georgia. It's a political talking point that will not stand up to scrutiny.

The reality is that our fair state has seen fit to saddle each and every one of us with 45 Health Insurance Mandates if we have a policy in force in Georgia. That means that every Georgian pays for mammograms each month, whether they have them or not. Every Georgian pays for prostrate care every month, whether they have prostrates or not. And 43 other types of care that our citizens may or may not use. Ever.

Insurance companies are for profit concerns. The price we all pay for our slice of what the state house thinks we need is not small. I've seen estimates that push it up to 20% of your monthly/quarterly/annual health insurance bill. I also a pose a question, do you think that insurance companies are in the habit of robbing Peter to pay Paul? Based on my conversations citizens all over the state during this campaign, I venture to state that insurance companies rob Peter and turn around and rob Paul as well.

I don't buy off on this concept that revenues collected from males for strictly female procedures are magically transferred to reduce or offset the cost of those procedures for the insurance companies female customers. They charge a large enough premium to ensure profitability on all their customers and in the case of Georgia, they get a little extra on the bottom line for those mandated coverages that will never, ever be used.

But wait, there's more. While Mrs. Squires is adamant that Georgia women are receiving some sort of benefit from the current arrangement, what about the money that Georgia women pay every month for the 35 mandates they'll never use? There are about 10 of our mandates are for services like mamograms, breast reconstruction, cervical exams etc that directly affect women. But they get saddled with paying for a host of services directed to grumpy old men they don't even know.

As the Libertarian candidate for Insurance Commissioner, I oppose the entire concept of Health Insurance Mandates. A better solution is to insist that every health policy in Georgia contain the OPTION to select those services the individual citizen may require. And to open our health insurance markets to provide more that the limited choices you have now.

If you'd like to know more about me or my campaign just google "Shane Bruce". You'll find me on the first page and I invite the residents of Savannah to get a complete picture of your choices before heading off to the ballot box on 2 NOV 10.

Shane Bruce
Libertarian Candidate for Commissioner of Insurance

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