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Just a few years we come back with our panel jury side from the Wall Street Journal -- herder from -- And now we have Al -- was -- this from a Denver Colorado so well.
You know they say and we have bad as successful commission looking into Social Security at least once usually frankly I don't give much credence to commissions -- committees.
You know the definition of a camels are horse put together by committee usually that happens but.
There was -- 1981 is Gerri reminds us is successful one on Social Security you think there's a chance to do that now.
Well obviously they have to do something nothing here is all that surprising note dated anyway new social security and Medicare were in trouble they've been in trouble all of our.
Adult lives and now all of a sudden there's a recession.
There's rising unemployment and some numbers have gotten pushed down a little bit lower that's all and actually that was to be expected to.
When growth kicks back in these numbers will rise back up.
But you know obviously these things are somewhat of a Ponzi scheme -- at some point they have to be addressed whether or not this will be the moment in time when these things get fixed.
Remains to be seen so far what I'm hearing from Geithner here sounds like a lot of rhetoric capitalizing on the moment.
This report David.
Is it an absolute that one way that we have to to start approaching -- is by region raising.
The retirement ages as people live longer than they used to.
I don't think raising the retire.
I don't think raising the retirement age for Medicare is something that's going to make sense because people -- having enough trouble.
Getting health insurance right now one of the biggest problem there as we have in this country is getting adequate insurance.
For people who have yet to reach Medicare eligibility age so I don't think raising the age is going to make sense for Medicare.
-- security as you know the age is already going up.
And that may be an issue that's on the table as we look at long term solvency.
Whether or not we should look at that and increase it more I think that is a fair issue to look at as -- -- -- a -- -- debate.
Now will be one of the issues on the table -- from Medicare at this point time.
I don't think that makes sense what we really do need to look at is holding down costs and health care system because that's really the big killer in the health -- side of the equation right now.
As a health care costs are outlining inflation every year.
By several percentage points -- -- how do you do that without price controls and we know the problems that you get when you get in a price control.
Well that's going to be the great debate not just about Medicare about about the health care system -- overall.
You know that the the industry worries about price controls worries about rationing.
The reverse argument is that if you get -- universal coverage you Poland's people into a more efficient system costs go down for everybody if everybody is covered and -- not getting into the back door through emergency rooms and that sort of thing.
I don't think anybody knows the answer the question though honestly and what these numbers tell you is that while his cost pressure -- -- social security and Medicaid and Medicare.
It's obviously much worse on Medicare -- Social Security.
The political irony is it probably be easier to fix Social Security a few tweaks on taxes and maybe the retirement age a little bit more it's -- benefit curbs.
You could get there on Social Security Medicare politically is -- much harder nut to crack.
David -- -- price controls on on medicines and other -- other forms of health care.
I don't think we need price controls what we need is to make the system much more efficient and do things in health -- that changes the way we deliver health care in the country.
We need to rely more Health Information Technology we need to rely more preventive medicine.
We need to a better job dealing with a chronic care case in this country that really cost the greatest amounts of money.
-- -- to do that with follow up care for people who are transitioning from the hospital back to their home what how how David how do you do it I mean presumably the private sector the people involved in health care in a private sector.
Want their costs to be as low as possible so their profit can be as -- brought possible why are they doing it now.
Well there was an interesting announcement yesterday he may have reported honor that many in the industry.
Have reported that they think that they can hold down health care costs by water half percentage point which -- saved.
Hundreds of billions if not trillions of dollars now there -- no details about how they would do that and I think obviously we need them.
But I think it was a really good sign a -- symbol that the industry players are saying we think that this can be done we think that there are savings in health care that we can achieve.
Without reducing quality and I think that's going to be the key debate the next couple months is how -- put those details in place to reduce health care costs across the board.
Now will help not just employers and individuals but the -- -- program -- Al let me just say some totally out of the box here because.
It hasn't always been like I grew up -- my grandfather he lived to be 92 years old even though he smoked and drank and did all the bad things was supposed to do.
But but we grew up with -- it was a wonderful experience for the whole family a lot of -- millions and millions of Americans used to do that.
Now it's assume that the government has to take care of all these problems.
Is is is part of the problem that -- currency now not economic but social that is that that individuals aren't responsible for their parents or grandparents like they used debate.
Well certainly that's part of the problem I mean nobody wants their mother mom moving in with them at age eighty anymore I mean my -- right now right on life doesn't mind if my mother moves in so you know there are some exceptions to that you have.
It was sweet wife -- you -- his late -- I don't know that my.
My my wife would doubt prove.
But you know what there's a lot of waste in health care.
It first of -- if you have health care you go to the doctor more -- I mean there's no economic disincentive except for maybe a co pay.
To go to the doctor and -- young people over utilize the system when there and shared.
The second thing is is a tremendous amount of waste and the administrative side of health care.
I don't think that these private insurance companies are any better and running a bureaucracy and the federal government and I am I want to waste is its toll on that in the -- -- side by -- do you think that there's a way to attack this.
And -- read there's a generational change we don't have extended families we don't have.
We don't have our grandparents living with this anymore and -- that's part of that -- so we're asking society at large for life.
Area again I don't wanna get caught in -- weeds of of what to do right now because frankly we're not gonna figured out this next couple of minutes but what about that overall question does any politician.
Have the gumption and nerve to say hey look Americans we gotta get back to taking care -- our -- Well maybe so it and it only.
This suggests that an alternative way of looking at this -- I dealt with in a column I wrote last week which is you -- you look at a trillion dollar deficit this year overall on a look at some unattractive Medicare and Social Security numbers you have here.
And that's all -- problem but maybe it's also an opportunity because David as you know.
Washington doesn't tend to deal with any problems except in a crisis and -- And maybe if you've got a sense of fiscal crisis that compels the system to deal with that finally.
If it's not a crisis everybody will keep putting this whole issue right health care costs in Medicare and Social Security off for years ago you put going to the opportunity proving until after the flood it happens everything -- -- guys thank you very much -- Lewis -- deserter -- side good.
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