Labor And Medicare

It is just not the GOP that works to undermine the Medicare debate…..labor is not a friend of our seniors either.

I have a long history of defending the labor movement….but that does not extend to union leadership.

I have long been a critic of our so-called labor movement….as a past labor organizer I see the biggest problem as the US labor is more concerned with monetary issues when they should be focused on the political.

I recently saw some disturbing news about the labor issues on Medicare….

“Medicare is a pillar of the healthcare system”

– AFL-CIO June 13, 2022

Such a statement from the AFL-CIO would suggest that labor is determined to protect Medicare and even support improving and expanding it to all Americans. Additionally, President Biden and Democrats regularly criticize Republican threats to reauthorize and voucherize Medicare. Meanwhile, what’s left out of both the Democrat talking points and the AFL-CIO’s 2022 national resolution on healthcare is any acknowledgment that the real threat to Medicare and healthcare today is the decades-long tax-subsidized privatization supported by both major parties.

With major support from organized labor, including AFL-CIO President George Meany at the signing, Medicare was signed into law in 1965. Before Medicare, only 60% of those over 65 had insurance since it was unavailable or unaffordable via private insurance (seniors were charged 3x the rate of younger people). Not only economically beneficial to the working class, the passage of Medicare was a huge civil rights victory as payments to physicians, hospitals, and health care providers were conditional on desegregation.

While a big victory, Medicare did not provide full coverage for all services, and from its inception, there has been a drive to privatize and hand it over to profiteers. In fact, 2022 marks the 50th anniversary (1972) of Medicare permitting private insurance companies (HMOs) to participate in Medicare.

President Clinton finalized HMO participation with Congress in 1997, and in 2003, the Medicare Modernization Act, under President Bush, further boosted privatization. The year 2003 marks the beginning of Medicare Advantage plans: insurance companies essentially masquerading as Medicare.

HMOs and all the other private insurance companies introduced into Medicare after 1997 have not saved the government money, but instead, raised the cost to taxpayers much more than traditional Medicare beneficiaries. In 2005 the Government Accounting Office reported that “It is largely . . . excess payments, not managed care efficiencies, that enable plans to attract beneficiaries by offering a benefits package that is more comprehensive than the one available to FFS beneficiaries, while charging modest or no premiums. Nearly all of the 210 plans in our study received payments in 1998 that exceeded expected FFS costs….”

Labor Leaders Provide Cover for Privatization of Medicare

If the Dems/GOP and Labor have their way then Americans will get screwed (as usual) by those we trust the most.

Just to let my readers know…..

Biden campaigned to expand Medicaid. Now he’s signed a bill to sharply curtail it, ending coverage for millions of people in the middle of a pandemic he pretends is over…

The Social Security administration continues to deny thousands of disability claims a year, in part because it continues to rely on a 45-year-old list of outdated job titles. We live in a System that is eager to help the people who least need it and quick to ignore, chastise and punish the weakest, sickest and poorest among us.

More broken promises that our ‘trusted’ leaders throw out the window once elected.

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”



This post may not be interesting to anyone but those that believe unions are a vital part of our country for without them America would not be the strong economy that it enjoys today.

Workers could lose the right to strike if SCOTUS plays their role….

The Supreme Court hears a labor dispute on Tuesday involving striking truck drivers who walked off the job to try to secure a better contract from their employer, a company that provides premixed concrete for construction projects. Yet, while Glacier Northwest v. International Brotherhood of Teamsters is a fairly unremarkable case, the stakes for unionized workers could be enormous.

Glacier Northwest, the employer behind this case, seeks to upend a more than 60-year-old rule protecting unions from lawsuits when workers exercise their federally protected right to strike.

It’s an audacious ask, and the case could potentially be decided more narrowly. But the two-thirds of the Court that was appointed by Republicans has shown extraordinary hostility toward unions in the past. So we can’t dismiss the risk that the Court hands down a maximalist decision that upends the balance of power between employers and labor unions.

The case hinges on a rule protecting workers’ right to strike, and laying out how companies can claim that this rule does not apply to a particular strike.

The Teamsters, the union in this case, allegedly timed a 2017 strike so that it would begin after some of Glacier Northwest’s mixing trucks were already filled with concrete, forcing the company’s non-union employees to race to dispose of this material before it hardened in the trucks. But the company was able to remove this wet concrete from the trucks before they were damaged, and there are a wealth of cases establishing that workers may strike even if doing so will cause some of their employer’s product to spoil.

In one case, for example, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) — a kind of quasi-court that hears disputes between unions and employers — sided with milk truck drivers who struck, even though their strike risked spoiling the milk before it was delivered to customers. Another case, handed down by a federal appeals court, reached a similar conclusion regarding striking cheese workers.

Just another attempt to prevent workers from earning the wages they deserve.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”