Sunday, December 07, 2008

Obama New Deal breakdown

Obama unveils 21st Century New Deal

—ENERGY: “[W]e will launch a massive effort to make public buildings more energy-efficient. Our government now pays the highest energy bill in the world. We need to change that. We need to upgrade our federal buildings by replacing old heating systems and installing efficient light bulbs. That won’t just save you, the American taxpayer, billions of dollars each year. It will put people back to work.”

I hope before they go installing a new heating system they figure out if it would be cheaper to replace the building. But no this is our government they will no doubt upgrade the entire building just to tear it down next year and name it after dear leader.

—ROADS AND BRIDGES: “[W]e will create millions of jobs by making the single largest new investment in our national infrastructure since the creation of the federal highway system in the 1950s. We’ll invest your precious tax dollars in new and smarter ways, and we’ll set a simple rule – use it or lose it. If a state doesn’t act quickly to invest in roads and bridges in their communities, they’ll lose the money.”

How about a nice Interstate 69 and a bridge?

—SCHOOLS: “[M]y economic recovery plan will launch the most sweeping effort to modernize and upgrade school buildings that this country has ever seen. We will repair broken schools, make them energy-efficient, and put new computers in our classrooms. Because to help our children compete in a 21st century economy, we need to send them to 21st century schools.”

Oh yeah that's what our failing schools need is a splash of paint, some fancy new bulbs and more laptops so the kids can check their myspace pages. Would be very helpful if some of the computer teachers actually knew more about them than the students.

—BROADBAND: “As we renew our schools and highways, we’ll also renew our information superhighway. It is unacceptable that the United States ranks 15th in the world in broadband adoption. Here, in the country that invented the Internet, every child should have the chance to get online, and they’ll get that chance when I’m president – because that’s how we’ll strengthen America’s competitiveness in the world.”

How about pushing the technology that transmits broadband via power lines to rural America?

—ELECTRONIC MEDICAL RECORDS: “In addition to connecting our libraries and schools to the Internet, we must also ensure that our hospitals are connected to each other through the Internet. That is why the economic recovery plan I’m proposing will help modernize our health care system – and that won’t just save jobs, it will save lives. We will make sure that every doctor’s office and hospital in this country is using cutting edge technology and electronic medical records so that we can cut red tape, prevent medical mistakes, and help save billions of dollars each year.”

Ok here is the problem with this. Many hospitals have already gone to electronic documentation and there are multiple software systems. If we are talking about developing software for these systems to communicate and subsidizing the implementation that would be great. Government should not be footing the bill for hospitals to go electronic because it is in the hospitals best interest to do so. Hospitals can trim costs with electronic systems with faster billing and making sure everything is done to get full reimbursement.

No comments: