Warning: Health Care Disaster Looming

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Here’s the problem and I’m going right at it because we don’t have much time.

Congress is about to change the rules on health care. You need to wake up and contact your Congressman/woman now. That’s how you can stop it. It is easier than cancelling Comcast. I’ll tell you how to do it later. Or you can scroll down and do it now. If your Congress person is a Republican, it is easy. They are all on board with this legislation and against you. Just call and say…truthfully…that if they do this to you, you will not vote for them.

Here is what is about to happen. The House of Representatives is controlled by two factions of Republicans…the bad guys and the very bad guys. You pay a ton of taxes. Less than Europeans, but enough to complain. They think they’re doing you a favor by even letting you have employer cost-shared health insurance. The rest should all be between you and the health insurance company.

They, meanwhile, are being paid by the insurance companies, through huge campaign contributions, to devastate your health insurance. Here’s what can happen. Let’s say that you lose your job. The old system, before the Affordable Care Act, (Obamacare) is back in place. So you go on what is called the COBRA plan. So now you can buy your old health insurance, the one you had with the company, but you pay your share AND the company’s share. (Who knows what they will say that is…my guess is…suddenly more than your share.) If you are sick, or have had any kind of a disease, maybe mild diabetes, high blood pressure…who knows under the new rules (health insurance industry written rules…look up ALEC on Google if  you don’ t know about it)…you have a pre-condition. 

Now you’re special. To them you’re special because you go into the “high-risk pool.” And what is that? This is the place that they can cover their costs. You pay a lot more for insurance. A lot more, maybe 3 or 4 times more. If you are older they have already announced that it will be up to 5  times more than a younger person. So a guy 30 will be paying, say $800 a month and you, at age 60, will be paying $4,000 a month. This is not a joke. This is in the law.

But let’s say that you don’t have any precondition and you want to take the COBRA you’re just paying a lot more. But if you go into the new system, which, to some extent, mimics the ACA, Obamacare, then you will probably get a better deal somewhere than on COBRA. But, remember, these are for-profit companies, and the idea was, frankly, to persuade you, that, without subsidies, you could buy insurance on the open market at a lower cost.

So the new system says that you can stay on Daddy’s health care plan until 2020. Which means that if you are 25 now, start looking for a health care plan. By the way, no penalty if you don’t get one. But if you don’t, you’d better read what an appendectomy costs these days. I had one. A good surgeon makes a slit about the length of two postage stamps. You stay in the hospital over night, get some rest and you’re out the next morning, ready to rock and roll. They say good bye and hand you a bill for–they tell me–these days: $33,000. Don’t worry. You can pay it out of your salary, like a car payment, over 60 months for a measly $550 a month. (Before interest.)

Here’s the problem in a nutshell. Obamacare subsidized a couple of things and that cost the government money and rich people who have so much money they don’t know how much, literally, how much they have, get upset. One of their stooges is a Senator named Rubio. He put in an amendment that was possible even though President Obama was President because it was on an appropriations bill that he could not veto or some essential government stuff wouldn’t get done. So Rubio killed the subsidies that were being paid to health insurance companies. (Knocked them down to 13% from total amount.) Insurance companies, under the law, were not compelled to continue without the subsidies. Some small companies that were started to provide non-profit solutions for many people were forced out of business. Other companies like United Healthcare just raised their rates to whatever covered all their costs. The Obamacare rate structure was obliterated. It had to be fixed.

So now comes Trump and the Republicans who wanted to repeal 50 to 60 times (I’ve lost count.) but never once offered a solution. Because they had one. Do what the health insurance companies want and the absolute minimum the people demand. And unless we, the people. demand more….we will get less than we need to stay healthy and less than all of us may need, including the affluent, who lose health care and get sick or a disease or a major auto accident and must pay hundreds of thousands in debt.

Every year before Obamacare, 500,000 people declared bankruptcy citing health care costs as the reason. It was the largest reason for bankruptcy. Obamacare wasn’t worked on for a solid year…from February of 2009 to March of 2010…because Barack Obama had some personal whim and a desire to piss of half of Congress who were backed by major hospital, healthcare, pharmaceutical and health insurance lobbying groups. He had 700,000 people a month losing jobs the day he took office. He had a couple of other problems. But health care premiums were going out of sight. People couldn’t afford health care.

So, get in touch with you your Congress person and tell him or her (if that person is a Republican) that this bill of theirs, the so called American Health Care Act, is a step backwards. (Of course, if your Congress person is a Democrat, you can always give him/her a pat on the back. It will be especially appreciated these days.)  And do it now. Today. Because time has run out.

Here’s what to do: 

You go to www.house.gov. You type in your zip code. If you need an extra four digits and don’t know it, take the time to look it up with their procedure..it’s two minutes and it could cost you your mortgage and car keys some day if you don’t. Type in the full zip if you are required to and you’ll get to the Representative’s page. Scroll down past all the bull shit about how much he or she loves you, until you find either phone numbers and offices, or  Email instructions. If they are not in the open, look for “Contact” somewhere and they will be there. The message is simple. Ask for the Congressman or woman by name. You probably won’t get them. Tell the clerk, which is what you will get in all likelihood, this message (or similar) “I’ve read up on this new American Health Care Bill  and it sounds to me like it is written for the insurance companies not for me. I didn’t vote for you (or for Mr. Ms …….,if talking to the clerk) to put me at risk with some health care plan that offers me a lot of risk. The point of the Obamacare plan was to reduce risk. I want you (him/her) to put back the subsidies, (this presumes you have read above about what the Republicans did about subsidies) stop worrying about tax breaks for the rich, create real regional markets…or get us a single- payer or Medicare-for-all system! This what we voted for. Improving our health care system. Not improving it for the health insurance companies. (They will either say thank you and say that they will give the message to the Congress person, or they may reply in some way. Just say, thanks, but just give the message to the Congressman/woman.)

Why so abrupt? The point is to stop this bill, which you hear is connected to the tax bill. They want to take away about $1 trillion in subsidies in Obamacare over time and use them to create tax breaks for corporations and millionaires and above. That is why they say they have to get the health care done fast and first. If they don’t, the big deal tax bill won’t be so “huge” and will be a flop as far as industry and Wall Street is concerned. Well, if Wall Street is happy, but you can’t afford health care..and, by the way, I haven’t even mentioned how badly the poor will be devastated, then it will matter little to you how Wall Street feels. They’ll be all right. They always come out on top.