photo by Sheri Dixon

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Congratulations- You Are Free to Play in the Street, Now

Lets get this out of the way right now, because there are people who would love to pounce on a parenting analogy to scream, "THE PRESIDENT IS NOT MY DAD!!! HE CAN'T TELL ME WHAT TO DO!!! NANNY STATE NANNY STATE NANNY STATE!!!"

So just don't, m-kay?

I'm extremely disappointed in the 'Keep Your Insurance' law that was signed by the House yesterday. Because here's what happened- here's what's been happening all along with the ACA (that's Obamacare, for those who only watch FOX and read World Net Daily).

Because the majority of Americans are aware of how broken and inaccessible and totally fucked up our current for-profit health care system is in this country.


No, I don't lie. America DOES have the best health care in the world. Top hospitals and doctors and technology- we know that, We are intimate friends with MD Anderson in Houston- best cancer hospital in the world. There's a huge difference between 'health care' and 'health care access'. Because at MD Anderson, if you have good, name brand insurance- Blue Cross, Aetna, can be treated and cared for. If you have sub-par insurance (even with a name brand company)or no insurance at all, the amount you need to present in advance at the business office for your first week of consultations (not treatments or drugs or scans, mind you- consultations) is $28,000. No checks. Everything else? Pay as you go, in advance.

And we know that, too- for a fact, because 2 years into Ward being an active treated patient there, he was fired for 'missing too much time off for that cancer thing' and even though he was immediately approved for Medicare disability (you do NOT need a lawyer to get approved- go to the Social Security office first) once you're approved for disability, you must wait a year for Medicare to start up. A year. So he had no insurance for a year. Eight months into that year, he needed a scan because there was a suspicious spot right where his 'locally aggressive and problematic' cancer had been. We called for an appointment, assuming that because we were already current patients, had had insurance for all previous treatments and were GUARANTEED insurance in a few more months they'd offer us some sort of payment plan.

No dice. Payment up front- over $5,000 please. No checks.

When I asked the chickie babe in the business office what we were going to do because we don't HAVE $5,000 lying around, she asked when Ward's Medicare was going to start and I told her October. This was in May. She thought a minute, then said, "Well...he probably won't DIE before that, right?"

Do not speak to me of American Health Care.

*No- he didn't die before October- our loving friends and family kicked in (again) and we presented cash the morning of the scan. Then we had to WAIT over an hour until the business office posted it and UNLOCKED THE ACCOUNT for the lab. I shit you not.

But I digress.

But I have to because otherwise I'm accused of being a sheeple who listens to all that liberal media and eats up everything the Kenyan Usurper dishes out. Which is bullshit. Both the assumption and the fact that I have to justify why I feel how I feel and even when presented with example after example about what a REAL death panel looks like (it looks like a chickie babe in the business office, it looks like a 'treatment/medication not covered by your policy' letter or phone call but it does NOT look like Universal health care) people STILL look at me like I'm lying to them. They'd quicker believe Rush or Sean or Bill before someone they know and see every single day.

And then they ask me, "Why are you so angry and frustrated?"

I'm angry and frustrated because a portion of the American people are fighting tooth and nail against their own interests. They SAY they'd rather 'die a free man' than 'submit to socialized medicine'. You know what I think?

I think they're full of shit. Oh, there are always going to be people so delusional that they'll let their kids die from things that are an easy fix because 'god says so'. But the vast majority of the vocal minority that say they'd rather die than get FUCKING MEDICAL CARE if it's coming from the 'evil government'? Full. Of. Shit. On accounta they really only mean that when it's about other people. When THEY or their families get sick or hurt it's a whole different story, baby.

I'm angry and frustrated that the original ACA had no public option- you see there IS no such thing as 'Obamacare' as in, "Now I'm FORCED to sign up for Obamacare". What the ACA does do is tell the insurance companies that they may not discriminate against, yanno...sick people or people who are in a group more likely to need medical care- children, old people, women. They have to take everyone. The website is a warehouse- to shop around for the best plan for your family.

What the hell? People who will make seventy-eleven stops to get the best buy on bread, ice cream and canned veggies are pissed off that they have to spend some time price-shopping their own health care? Shut up.

And glitches? There is not a program or even a product that comes out perfectly and without glitches. Good lord, every time a new gadget comes out there are glitches and people get pissed but accept that shit's gonna happen and wait for the bugs to work out. Get a fucking grip.

I'm angry as hell that the asinine GOP keeps poking that bear and angry as hell that the President got up and said, "You know- I should've made sure that bear was magical and perfect, even though I'm not an IT guy, I'm the freaking president of the bad". Bullshit.

I'm angry and frustrated and so very sad that people who have truly crappy 'insurance policies' are being goaded (again with the GOP) into clutching those useless-as-tits-on-a-boar-hog policies to their patriotic breasts and fighting like crazy to keep them even though if they actually get sick or hurt those policies will do NOTHING.


See above about what the ACA actually is. Simmer down and look at what subsidies you are qualified for because of the ACA, know that 'fines for not being insured' come to about $90 per year and are uninforceable. I'm very sorry if your home is only worth $90, dude.

Also, those policies do exist. I moved here to Texas and had no insurance for the first time in my life. So I found what I could afford and it was total crap. Low premium, but no coverage at all. It was a 'reimburse' policy- I'd have to pay up front for whatever I needed and IF they decided it was worthy, they'd pay me back a PORTION of it. These are rampant and being sold by the big names as well as the small names and they are the worst type of scam. They are also the vast majority of policies being cancelled because they don't actually qualify as meaningful insurance. Get it, now?

Here are some more fun facts for you-

-Once you choose your plan (and you don't have to get through the website- signing up by phone has been easy and quick according to people I actually know. In person- not those people on the tv) and see what subsidies you'll get and what you'll actually be gaining- seriously- have your current policy in front of you to compare, then get back to me. ***Not with stories of 'people that were on FOX News saying their premiums are now $6,000 a month, either- I want YOUR experience, honest and true. You just might be pleassntly surprised. Don't worry- the president will still be black- you always have that to fall back on.

-About that website. Every state is supposed to have their own, yanno. And states with their own are substantially less glitchy than the big national one (less traffic/less glitches- even *I* know that). If your state doesn't have its own exchange, that means your state has also refused the FREE expansion of Medicaid- that little thing in the law that will ensure that those who are too poor to pay their premiums (lots of people are too poor to afford quality insurance- the answer to that should NOT be 'here- have this crappy policy', the answer should be something like...the ACA) (Actually the lasting answer is to go to universal health care but we're OBVIOUSLY not advanced and intelligent enough going down the slippery slope to whatever hell THAT leads to- RIGHT, SWEDEN???) So if you have no state website your premiums will probably be high. That's not the ACA or its Satan Obama Author you need to blame, it's your selfish bastard GOP governor. Because every single state that is denying FREE help for their uninsured citizens has a Republican Governor sitting in their capitol. A Republican governor who has government health care, by the way, so no skin off THEIR noses.

But these are all old frustrations.

Today's frustration and anger is watching the president say "I'm sorry I lied to you". Because he DIDN'T lie. DOES he lie? Of course he does. He's a politician. I think he's basically a good guy and I wouldn't have his job for all the cocoa in the world, but he's done some things I'd like to slap him upside the head for, and some things that I believe are just wrong, wrong, wrong- things a Republican would do.

It's watching him say, "With the 'Keep your Insurance' law, you'll be able to keep your policy another year".

Here's what that did.

It's allowing people to screw themselves for another year with do-nothing 'insurance' policies. But that's freedom, baby- we are as free to be as stupid as we wanna be, right?

More importantly- and tucked into the back end of the speech and articles is what it does for the insurance companies.

Because the ACA made (past tense) the insurance companies stop selling the crappy policies and actually cover shit. Made them stop denying people for getting sick or hurt or having pre-existing conditions. They can now keep doing all of that- all of it, for another year. It gave the insurance companies another year of fucking over desperate people who cannot afford good insurance. Because not only can current policies continue...they can continue to sell new ones. New crappy policies.

And they screamed for it. They demanded it. The people demanded it.

So congratulations, people who have sorry-ass policies. If and when you need them, you will realize that you should've burned your premium money, even tho it was less than a Ben Franklin a month. Should've flushed it down the toilet. Should've spent it on beer and cigarettes. Because your policy will do squat to help you.

And I'm pre-emptively frustrated and pissed because when people realize this, they'll holler about how the president isn't protecting the 'Merikan people because he 'let' the insurance companies screw them over and why didn't he do something???

So what should he have said?

He should've said NO.

He should've held firm.

He should've told people clutching their shit-policies, "Just look at the exchanges- see what they can do for you- it's going to be OK- because what you have right now is like playing in traffic- I don't want to see the American people playing in traffic and here's a way out of the street".

But he didn't. Because he's human and he's frustrated and angry, too,

So he said, "Fine. Congratulations- you are free to play in the street for another year. Have fun with that".

Yanno what? Just go. Go play in the street. But be sure there's a nice big semi truck coming because if you just get hurt getting hit by a Kia, your insurance will not cover your injuries. And then you'll be in the emergency room mooching off the rest of us RESPONSIBLE Americans who have insurance.


1 comment:

  1. I would love to see you on the Bill Maher show. You would be an awesome panelist.