Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Hump Day Headlines

The Senate was unable to garner the 60 votes needed to start debate on the President's jobs bill. Looks like they are going to cut it up in pieces and try to pass whatever parts of it they can. I heard a GOP-er on MSNBC last night who said he agreed with all the corporate tax breaks contained in the bill -- just nothing that will help the jobless.

There's a good reason the supercommittee is operating in secret. They can't even get to square one: how to count. What's the benchmark? In other words, if they have to cut $1.2 million, are they cutting from current law? If so, that will include projected revenue increases from allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire. But if the tax cuts are extended to the middle class, that would increase the deficit. And so they are mired in mud.

Health insurers in NY are required to post justification of rate increases online. They'll have to do this nationally starting 2012. But they claim the documents would release trade secrets and so they are asking to keep them secret. In which case the public will never know the amount of profit they are raking in.

Medicare Advantage Plans chase the elusive five star rating that gets them a bonus.

Massachusetts' Medicaid waiver -- part of its state health reform -- has to be extended, but the catch is paying providers enough to keep them serving those on Medicaid.

Do you take your medicine as prescribed? Doctors are finding technological ways to determine whether you're on schedule with your meds and to get you back in the game.

You're better off following dietary guidelines than taking vitamin supplements. Indeed, vitamins may increase the risk of death. And Vitamin E has been linked to prostate cancer.

Five cancers likely to push you over the financial edge -- lung, thyroid, leukemia/lymphoma, uterine and colorectal.

And that's today's morning news. Have a great day. Jennifer

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