Obamacare

Why People are Choosing to Remain Uninsured Under Obamacare

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The New York Times today features a lengthy article profiling individuals who chose to remain uninsured this year under Obamacare.

For most of the people who appear in the story, it's a financial decision. They have tight budgets, and health insurance remains expensive under the Affordable Care Act, even with whatever subsidies they may qualify for. 

Cost is the most frequently raised issue, but it's not the only one. One Kentucky man featured in the story says he was put off by technical troubles; he had decided to purchase insurance, and he had selected a plan with what he thought was a fairly low deductible. But that deductible, the Times reports, was "miscalculated because of a programming error." He ended up deciding not to enroll in new coverage through the exchange this year. 

And then there's the story of Tammy Williams, a woman from Washington state who "based her decision to opt out partly on philosophical resistance to the law." Here's her story:

"The government comes into our life and makes these decisions for us without even asking us," said Ms. Williams, 56. "It just makes me want to rebel."

Ms. Williams, who earns less than $40,000 a year at a small marketing firm in Seattle, said she did not want to hand over what little discretionary money she had after rent and other living expenses to an insurance company. She has been uninsured since moving a year ago from Ohio, where she had a job with health benefits.

She qualified for a subsidy to help buy coverage through Washington's marketplace, but said that she still would have had to pay around $135 a month for the least expensive plan, with a $6,000 deductible that she said made it unfeasible.

"I am opting out," she said on the last day of the enrollment period, adding that she might instead buy dental coverage outside the marketplace to take care of a chipped crown and a cavity.

A political independent, Ms. Williams said she at first chided herself about not buying coverage, thinking, "There's plans out there that make it a good thing for people, and I'm just going for rebelling against the government."

But when she looked closely at the costs, she decided her resentment was justified.

"If given a voice — 'Do you want to participate or not?' — I would have said no," Ms. Williams said. "But I don't remember being asked."

The piece ends with the story of Cindy Whitely, a Kentucky woman who had initially thought she might go without insurance, but did end up getting covered after her work with a home improvement company dried up last winter. Less work meant less income, which in turn meant a bigger-than-expected subsidy for her and her family. 

But now she's worried that she might lose her new coverage if work picks back up, her incomes rises, and the subsidy is no longer as big as it is now. "If work picks back up and I jump right back up there," she told the Times, "then I'm stuck." 

That's a pretty good illustration of the tradeoff the law sets up between working more and keeping benefits. When people talk about Obamacare's potential negative effects on employment, this is the sort of thing they're talking about. 

But it's actually worse than that. If Whitely's income rises enough this year, not only will her subsidy for next year go away, but she may have to repay part of this year's subsidy. People who underestimate their income and therefore end up getting a larger subsidy than their actual income allows can be dinged by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for repayment come tax time. 

This is not a small issue. As many as 40 percent of the beficiaries who receive subsidies under the law may end up on the hook for repayment, according to a 2013 Health Affairs study. Which means that if she ends up with more work than expected this year, the extra subsidy that Whitely was counting on to help pay for coverage might not really be there at all.

Maybe all this will get sorted out as the law settles into place. The IRS may just go easy on people who are on the hook for repayment. But I wouldn't be surprised if, in the years ahead, these are the sorts of stories we hear more of when asking why some people are still choosing to remain uninsured. 

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  1. She qualified for a subsidy to help buy coverage through Washington’s marketplace, but said that she still would have had to pay around $135 a month for the least expensive plan, with a $6,000 deductible that she said made it unfeasible.

    This woman is going to pay $1620 a year to obtain coverage for some percentage of medical bills that she has in that year over $6,000. Even at 56, assuming she is healthy, that doesn’t make any sense. It wouldn’t make any sense even if you didn’t mandate coverage for pre-existing conditions. Mandate coverage for that and it makes no sense.

    It really comes down to the fact that insurance coverage is not care. The various prog idiots who wrote this monstrosity actually seemed to think that coverage is identical to care and that anyone would buy coverage since everyone would want access to medical care.

    1. …”The various prog idiots who wrote this monstrosity actually seemed to think that coverage is identical to care”…

      Even the Canuck supremes finally decided that getting on a waiting list does not equal getting treatment.
      But we can’t expect Obo and Pelosi to be that smart.

    2. Her choice is not much different than catastrophic insurance.

      1. Except that, thanks to the mandates she can’t buy actual catastrophic insurance you half wit. Actual catastrophic insurance would be much cheaper.

        1. Yes, for all involved. Her “not much different than catastrophic insurance” is giving her basically the same coverage as actual catastrophic coverage, just at a much higher cost (to the taxpayer).

        2. Not with no maximum benefit or lifetime cap, you loon.

          1. Not with community rating, you mean.

            Tammy Williams is a milch cow. She has to pay more so that higher risk people can pay less.

            THAT is why she’s being asked to pay $135 a month, after subsidies, for a high-deductible plan.

            1. Community rating and no max/cap. $135/month is cheap insurance for a possible 7-figure claim.

              And the high deductible insures she is stingy with frivolous treatments.

              1. That’s rich, for someone celebrating putting so many people on Medicaid. She gets to pay monopsony prices until she exhausts her deductible, but that’s good because at least she’ll be parsimonious about her claims. Sounds terrific, if we’re determined to embrace the worst of both worlds.

              2. That depends on what the PROBABILITY of having a 7 figure claim is.

            2. I suspect she ranks among the farmers, not the cows, where subsidies are concerned. After going through the process and looking at my options, I’d have paid what she does biweekly for a silver plan.

              Despite being half her age and making roughly a third of her income.

              Of course, she doesn’t want the coverage, and doesn’t seem to need the frills, which is the point.

      2. Except that the premiums for catastrophic insurance would be half the Ocare ones, its completely the same.

        1. And most catastrophic insurance didn’t have caps, or had caps that were extremely unlikely to be hit.

    3. insurance coverage is not care.

      Yep. And affordable mortgages are not affordable housing.

      Americans are either stupid or corrupt. An insignificant minority are neither.

      1. Americans are either stupid or corrupt. An insignificant minority are neither.

        A significant majority are both.

  2. As an uninsured outlaw, I am anxiously awaiting the next income tax season where I will pay more for health care I did not get than at any other time in my life.

    1. You are too poor to buy health insurance. For this crime, our benevolent government is going to fine, I mean Penaltax, you.

      It can never be stated enough that these assholes created a law that fines people for not being able to afford health insurance. And they did so in the name of “providing coverage for all”.

      1. Yea, back in the good old days I could go to the doctor and get a checkup, then discover that my employer forgot to deduct the premium from my check, only to discover that the checkup with all th screenings was cheaper than if I’d been charged for my insurance to begin with.

        Then there were the years when I had no insurance and I never saw the doctor. Health care costs=0, back then.

        1. The whole law is about getting the lower and middle middle class to pay more so that the poor can get insurance for free and various Dem interest groups could get their ponies mandated into every policy.

          That is it. That is all this thing does. Someone like you that works and makes a living but isn’t well off enough to want to buy gold plated insurance, is now forced to either pay the pentaltax or buy insurance to contribute to free insurance for the poor and mandated coverage of various PC coverage issues like birth control and maternity care and so forth.

          1. Exactly. How do you explain how pediatric dental care ended up on the list of mandatory benefits? And birth control and mammograms.

            Anything that ends up on the mandated coverage list is being cross-subsidized by others. Anything that doesn’t, you’re on your own. See out of network coverage.

            It’s all about mandating socialized payments for things that Democratic interest groups want.

            1. They were too clever by half. That idea would have worked if they had only mandated one or two sacred cows. Instead, they mandated all of the sacred cows. By doing that, they ensured that even their supporters who were supposed to benefit got fucked.

              Sure mandated pediatric dental care coverage is great for someone with children, except that it comes at the price of also paying for mandated maternity and birth control coverage and a bunch of other stuff you likely don’t want or need.

              This law is so horrible that even the people for whom it was designed to benefit hate it.

              1. Substance abuse treatment and mental health care. ‘Cause drug addicts and the mentally ill tend to be poor and vote Democratic.

                What I don’t get is how it’s supposed to matter with a $6,000 deductible. Who spends six grand a year on rehab and therapy?

                1. Who spends six grand a year on rehab and therapy?

                  You’d be surprised. That shit’s expensive. A stint at an inpatient rehab place will get you there easily.

                  1. K, so we know that urban hipsters who can afford to detox in the Betty Ford clinic are Democratic voters. Check.

                    1. Hey, you asked. For some place like Betty Ford, you’re talking a hell of a lot more than $6000.

                2. Let me introduce you to some genuinely pricy rehab center in Santa Monica. $6k won’t even see you through the first week.

                  1. Hence the need to get it covered by insurance.

                    We wouldn’t want So Cal coke fiends to go without their rehab.

            2. With Private Health Insurance, once you require expensive or catastrophic treatments, after years of paying premiums, the Insurance company will simply weasel out of paying the claims and drop the individual.

              Then, that individual comes to me, the tax payer.

              Private Insurance, in my opinion has too much of a free ride. They don’t have to cover old people (65+ are covered by medicare), they don’t have to cover poor people (Medicaid), and the people they do cover, they as I mentioned above just weasel out of the expensive stuff.

              If you believe in a way of mitigating risk, you can’t beat a 300,000,000 pool.

              1. With Private Health Insurance, once you require expensive or catastrophic treatments, after years of paying premiums, the Insurance company will simply weasel out of paying the claims and drop the individual.

                False.

              2. the Insurance company will simply weasel out of paying the claims and drop the individual.
                \
                Citation please? That didn’t happen with any of my grand parents or my mother, all of whom had long running illnesses that lead to their deaths.

                If insurance companies didn’t pay when you got sick, people wouldn’t want to have insurance so much Alice. Imagine if car companies as a rule always weaseled out on their warranties. People would very quickly stop buying or wanting warranties because they would rightly see them as no good.

                That is not happening here, or at least wasn’t before Obamacare. People wanted and needed insurance and went to great lengths to get it. That is not because insurance companies never paid.,

                FAIL!!!

                1. I see value in laws that force companies to publish stuff like percentage of denials, and the like. Transparency makes the economy more efficient.

                  However, people who claim insurance companies are unlikely to pay have clearly never seen the financial records of these companies. They make somewhere around 5 – 6% profit margins on average. They are paying shit tons of claims.

              3. A) That doesn’t really happen that often
                B) You can sue your insurance company if it does.
                C) It wouldn’t be that hard to pass a law that prevents insurers from doing that (or makes it harder). You don’t have to mandate all this other stuff to prevent that.

                1. Alice,

                  What Hazel said. I would also encourage you to google “Bad Faith Lawsuit”. States have made it very easy and very lucrative to sue insurance companies that try and screw their insureds. Insurance companies screw third party claimants. Those people can’t file bad faith law suits. They rarely screw their policy holders because policy holders can.

              4. First of all, private insurers don’t have to cover anyone. They do so because it is profitable. Well, at least that used to be the case.

                I hear these claims that insurers screw over their customers, dropping coverage and refusing to pay benefits. Maybe that is totally true, but I haven’t actually seen anything but vague accusations. If insurance companies are breaking their contracts, then they should be sued out of existence. But it is also really easy to get people to believe the worst about insurance companies, and big business in general. The hate is often not justified by the actual facts.

                1. LynchPin1477,

                  If those claims were true, people would not want insurance. Those claims depend on the idea that people are so dumb they will continue to buy insurance even though insurance never pays when they need it. Bullshit.

                2. There used to be a practice called recision, where the insurer would accept your payments until you made a big claim, and then they would go through your medical history to identify some sort of pre-existing condition and drop your coverage for those issues.

                  That has been outlawed for many years (and before the laws, you could sue your way back to coverage, though that is often hard for someone critically ill who needs treatment now). But the complaints live on, since those stories remain in the news, even though they cannot happen today.

                  1. There used to be a practice called recision, where the insurer would accept your payments until you made a big claim, and then they would go through your medical history to identify some sort of pre-existing condition and drop your coverage for those issues.

                    If you come to me to insure your car and swear it has never been wrecked, then file a claim and my inspection discovers pre-existing frame damage, I should not have to pay your claim either.

                    Now, if you come to me with your car and I inspect it completely before insuring you, that is a whole different issue.

                    if you want to run around to insurance companies lying about your health history, they should not be on the hook for your fancies and fabrications.

              5. If you believe in a way of mitigating risk, you can’t beat a 300,000,000 pool.

                Minus the people on medicaid and medicare, which is actually significantly more now than before when the evil private insurance companies were getting a free ride. You can’t even be coherent for a single post.

              6. Insurance company will simply weasel out of paying the claims and drop the individual

                I’m sure that’s what it seems like to people who are denied coverage, but I’d bet that there is some fuckup or some incorrect information provided to the insurer behind most such cases. If the insurer violates the contract, they should pay.
                Whatever it is that happens in those cases, it is far from the norm. I know many people who have had expensive medical care paid for by insurance and no one who has been dropped when they got sick. So my anecdote cancels out yours and Michael Moore’s.

              7. It’s anecdotal, but they didn’t balk when my newborn spent 3 weeks in the NICU running up an ungodly bill. They fulfilled their end of the contract as one would expect.

              8. I’m always amused at people who say, “Hey them insurance companies are inherently evil, let’s force everyone to buy their product at gunpoint.”

              9. Universal coverage is not insurance.

        2. back in the really good old days, when you went for a checkup, you simply wrote a check at the end and went on about your life.

          1. That is what I would have done had I not been under the illusion that I had insurance which covered a physical. I opted out of the insurance after that.

            When I did sustain a serious injury, it was covered through the workman’s compensation that my employer was required to carry. Otherwise, they would have been writing a check for the ambulance ride and treatment.

          2. back in the really good old days, when you went for a checkup, you simply wrote a check at the end and went on about your life.

            Or something else if you couldn’t afford it. My grandfather was paid in many things besides cash. A nice 20 gauge, a service revolver, etc. People got care and he still died in his three story home with a quarter acre garden and another 50 acres with three catfish ponds. Literally everyone came out ahead with no government intervention.

            1. My Dad would treat neighbor emergencies for…gasp…free!

              I remember as kid, frantic neighbors with the kid at 105 degree fever ringing the doorbell at 2 am, and Dad getting his black bag and going over to check on them. They later grilled some steaks and had us over as thanks.
              I suspect he would have been in deep trouble doing that today.

              1. Ron Paul talks about this a bit in “The Revolution”.

                The truly poor will be taken care of. Problem is, the left doesn’t really give a shit about the truly needy. They want free shit for everyone except the rich.

                1. Problem is, the left doesn’t really give a shit about the truly needy. They want free shit for everyone except the rich.

                  It’s truly about making others pay their “fair share,” no matter what the actual costs are. It’s about appearances of doing *something* that they care about.

          3. our company just offered a Health Savings Account. My wife spends a couple days in the hospital every year or two, so I went with the $6k deductible. The company contributes $2k to the HSA. I pay $167 every two weeks and elected to pay another $115 each pay to that I never have to write a check – every is covered either by the HSA or the insurance.

            The high deductible plan has a max out of pocket of $12k/yr. Minus the company’s $2k contribution, that’s $10k/yr for the employee. A person who deposits $3000/yr in the HSA for two years, and has no medical expenses, can beginning in year 3 have a HSA with a sufficient balance to cover all OOP expenses.

            That person can then purchase a high deductible HSA plan, that combined with the fully funded account, will cost $27 a pay and never require the insured to actually pay “out of pocket”.

            How many libtard trolls here say that cannot be done? Obamacare sure doesn’t provide it. My only fear is that the delayed employer mandate will outlaw the high deductible HSA’s (a conservative invention)

      2. No, they did so to force the healthy and young to pay for the not healthy and older. They simply socialized medicine in a way that wasn’t as obvious to many people. It’s really that simple.

        1. Yes. See my statement above. And it is not so much young people as it is the middle and lower middle class. The upper middle class and upper classes already had gold plated insurance and thus are not going to be as effected by this.

          The people this really fucks are the middle class who either went without insurance or bought modest coverage. Those people are fucked. They now either have to buy gold plated coverage, because that is all the law allows to be sold or pay the penaltax.

          And as an added bonus, the poor who now have their free insurance are flooding the insurance plans ensuring that the people who had insurance before can no longer see their doctor because there is no room for them.

          This entire law was designed to totally fuck the middle class and hopefully make them poor. The Progs hate the middle class more than anything. The poor are easy since they can be bought off cheap. The rich don’t feel the pain of the Prog idiocy and can be guilted into supporting it. It is the middle class that objects. And the Progs thus have always wanted it destroyed.

          1. They have to by bronze plans at gold-plated rates.

            They used to have modest policies that were priced according to their risk. Now they have shitty policies that are priced according to the risk of a morbidly obese welfare case drug addict.

            1. Yes Hazel. I stand corrected. I forgot about community rating and such. They effectively have worse coverage, less access to care and are being forced to pay much more money for it.

              I really hate the people who did this with the heat of a thousand suns. Fuck Tony and everyone who supported this and now tries to justify it.

  3. “If given a voice ? ‘Do you want to participate or not?’ ? I would have said no,” Ms. Williams said. “But I don’t remember being asked.”

    You were asked, Ms. Williams, in 2008 (and again in 2012!). We all were. And we chose Obamacare.

    #votingisadutynotaright #socialcontract #statistsactuallybelievethis

    1. In fairness, she really wasn’t asked in 08. Obama ran attack ads on McCain for supporting the mandate. I think Obama voters in 08, for all of their idiocy, can honestly say they didn’t think he was going to do this.

      1. She had every right to a say in the matter while the bill was being deliberated, and again to register her disagreement in 2012 by voting against its chief architect.

        And then get steamrolled by Congress, like the rest of us.

        1. 2012 is a different story. Anyone who voted for Obama in 2012, can’t say they were not warmed.

          Of course, the law wasn’t in effect yet and the media is inhabited by people like Tony who will tell any lie no matter how great to hide the truth of this disaster.

          1. You wouldn’t know truth if it bit your scrotum. There are plenty of reasonable objections to be made about this law, but until the actual apocalypse you’ve been predicting occurs as a result, then you stand mistaken.

            1. There are plenty of reasonable objections to be made about this law,

              Sure Tony, that is why you are always on here listing them. You really make me laugh sometimes. Shreek is just evil and vile. You are actually funny.

              Beyond that, this law and the people who will support no matter what is harming millions of innocent people and causing enormous amounts of misery. That and his lie to sell it are going to be Obama’s legacy. Own it pal.

              1. Do get back to me when there’s any evidence of this alleged misery.

                1. Sure Tony, there is no evidence. Just ignore the millions of people who claim otherwise. And those various sick people who claim to have lost their doctors are just Koch plants.

                  And of course the law is great, that is why so many Democrats are so proud of it and are running for re-election on its success. You really do make me laugh.

    2. So should individuals get to opt out of any laws they don’t like, or just the ones that are controversial at the moment?

      1. I want to go to there.

        1. Good god, Lemon!

      2. gee, Tony, Obama does it all the time, even with his namesake law.

      3. if you are morally opposed to a law – then yes. See Fugitive Slave Act as one example.

        1. or conscientious objectors for a broader one.

      4. You mean, just like Obama?

      5. No, only the president gets to opt out of laws he doesn’t like.

      6. So should individuals get to opt out of any laws they don’t like, or just the ones that are controversial at the moment?

        I smell an appeal to authority about to happen. Why not defend the law on its merits, Tony w/o spaces?

        1. I have no interest in doing any such things. Relative to the goals of healthcare reform it’s no great success.

          1. “…it’s no great success…” Heh, yep, anyone with a brain might just call it a dismal failure…

      7. Re: Tony,

        So should individuals get to opt out of any laws they don’t like,

        Individuals have been doing that since time immemorial, Tony. I can’t conceive the notion that you would be surprised by this. At one point, interracial marriage was illegal in many states in the union, yet many white women married black men (and vice versa) in clear defiance of The Law.

        Or would you say that it was OK to “opt out” of those laws that YOU don’t like, just not Obama The Handsome’s ACA?

        1. So, to all of you, just any old law you feel like? Or is the world so easily categorized into good laws and bad laws that utter chaos wouldn’t ensue if law were, in general, optional?

          1. The world is easily categorized into moral laws and immoral laws.

            Moral laws are designed to protect individual rights and punish actual crime. Immoral laws attempt to prevent crime and non-consensually force individuals to forfeit their property for the sake of another.

            It IS pretty simple provided you aren’t an immoral pig.

            1. Uh huh. And you get to decide what counts as individual rights and crimes?

              1. Of course not. That would be insane. Better we should leave that to the all those of the wise and beneficent oligopoly that rules from on high. The kindly old men who work tirelessly to craft a perfect, peaceful, honest and morally pure existence for those of us under them who never think to abuse their station in any way.

          2. Re: Tony,

            So, to all of you, just any old law you feel like?

            You are not addressing the point, Tony. The point is that just because a legislative body passes a law does not make the law itself valid, moral or even practical. Like I said, people have been disobeying stupid or unjust laws since time immemorial, and yet you retort with that stupid comment?

            Or is the world so easily categorized into good laws and bad laws that utter chaos wouldn’t ensue if law were, in general, optional?

            I just gave you an example – are you going to address that fact or continue making inane questions?

            1. Duly passed laws are valid but not necessarily moral or practical. I just don’t think you psychopaths ought to be judge, jury, and executioner on the question.

              1. So, you’re categorizing the president as a psychopath on the merits, right? Since he obviously is ignoring plethora laws he doesn’t care for…

  4. Of course, Peter, you leave out the example of people who resisted at first but then liked it:

    “Just before the March 31 deadline, they bought a plan with monthly premiums of $176 and an $1,800 deductible ? still expensive “for something I may never use,” she said. In her 44 years, Ms. Whitely said, she has never had health insurance.

    For her, the mandate and its threat of a penalty were important. “I’m doing it more because I have to,” she said.

    Still, she is relieved that her son now has Medicaid coverage. And now that she has health insurance for the first time, she has already begun worrying about losing it.”

    Its that “something she may never use” excuse, isn’t it? Of course, she may need it, and then use the emergency room for sickness, never pay the bill, or go bankrupt, and then who covers all those costs? We do. And that’s the point. She says she is worried about losing her health coverage? Then don’t…stop rolling the dice and pay for it like everyone else.

    1. and then who covers all those costs? We do.

      Given that you no doubt support the EMTALA, that’s entirely your problem. You volunteered to pay for her care, so suck it up.

    2. Of course, Peter, you leave out the example of people who resisted at first but then liked it

      Like the time when Jaime wanted to have sex with Cersei beside the dead body of their son and she said no several times but he went ahead and did it anyway.

    3. Then let’s embrace catastrophic coverage or HDHP/HSAs rather than the high-deductible, mandate-heavy abominations being pushed as proper health coverage.

      1. Good idea. Too bad the GOP didn’t propose it.

        1. It’s never too late.

          We hope.

        2. Exactly. They had the chance when Bush was pres and they controlled both Houses. But nothing. And now its just gnashing of teeth.

          1. In other words, double-down on a bad policy because the alternative is… up in the air?

            Progressivism really is the cargo cult of American politics. At least the dems are doing something, right?

            1. See it’s the ‘pubs fault that this law is so shitty.

            2. Its called reality. Elections have consequences. This President was elected saying he was going to do something about health care, and he was re-elected even after the plan was put in place.

              Try winning an election rather than whine about what should have been done, because that would have been better.

              Here’s a better thought…change or improve the ACA. But of course no, repeal only. Too late.

              1. #votingisadutynotaright #socialcontract #statistsactuallybelievethis

                No, I get it, Jackland. Living in a participatory democracy means having to embrace the best of worst available options, and fighting for it to the bitter end rather than swallowing any critique or reform.

                1. Critique and reform? Have at it…in fact you’ve been encouraged every step of the way to do exactly that. But that has not been the response, has it? Its only been only “repeal.”

                  Living in a participatory democracy means you never always get exactly what you want completely, but if you try sometimes, you just might find, you get what you need (apologies to Mick).

                  But to the Tea Party, you just don’t try at all. The preference is to take your ball and go home. And all you accomplish is going home.

                  1. What about this law do you think we (“we”) would want salvaged, even given the option? The individual mandate? Guaranteed issue? Community rating? Those are pillars of the policy. Winnowing them away would kill all of it. They’re off the table where reform is concerned, and therefore there’s no sense discussing reform whatsoever. Without recourse to authentic market pricing of industries unencumbered by this laughable bureaucratic mare’s nest, there’s no plausible reform which will improve either insurance or delivery. Full stop.

                    Or did you think we’d be happy with curtailing the contraceptive subsidies or shelving the exchanges? Because, you know, teabaggers.

                    1. Then keep on keepin’ on. Have at it. But at some point you should let reality creep in…the ACA isn’t going anywhere. Every prediction of failure has been wrong. I know, I know, its still going to fail. In the meantime, it moves on and people are benefitting, and by next year at this time, even more people will be on it. So take your ball and go home.

                    2. aww… can’t take a little criticism of it’s wonderfulness?

                    3. In the meantime, it moves on and people are benefitting, and by next year at this time, even more people will be on it.

                      Medicare and Medicaid already take up over $1 trillion a year in spending. People will “benefit” long enough until the third-party system that subsidizes their coverage can’t sustain itself anymore.

                      Math doesn’t give a shit about your social justice nonsense. It just is.

                    4. Come to the table! We’ll give you a list of concessions we’re willing to make, and you can debate amongst yourselves which of those it’ll take to shut you up.

                      Thanks.

                    5. people who resisted at first but then liked it:

                      So…we all were just askin’ for it right?

                    6. Don’t worry, Susan. Repeal is just around the corner…Peter, Dweebston, and R cubed are telling you so.

                    7. Don’t worry, Susan. Repeal is just around the corner…Peter, Dweebston, and R cubed are telling you so.

                      And Obamacare is going to bring affordable healthcare for all…because Jerkoffon Myface said so.

                    8. Turns out, Georgia is saying that less than half of the policies that were issued are being paid for. So guess what? It is headed for the vaunted death spiral. The policies will go up a shocking amount, fewer people will continue paying for them, liberals will keep lying about the numbers, somehow it will cost five times what it was projected to cost, which will make the policies left go up a shocking amount….lather, rinse, repeat. Guess what kiddo? The debate is over, when we say it’s over, not you.

      2. But I kept hearing all of the time that the catastrophic plans were solely responsible for the complete dearth of care people were receiving. Why would progs all of the sudden embrace them now?

    4. And who’s paying the subsidies for her coverage? We are. Obamacare is just a shell game. It’s not forcing the users to pay anywhere near the actual costs.

    5. Its that “something she may never use” excuse, isn’t it? Of course, she may need it, and then use the emergency room for sickness, never pay the bill, or go bankrupt, and then who covers all those costs? We do.

      I hear this claim all the time, but it’s really a load of horseshit–as if the lower/middle classes who don’t have insurance are responsible for the exponential growth of healthcare costs the last 40 years.

      Back in the 50s, a normal live birth and a two-day stay in a private hospital room cost about $1000, inflation-adjusted. It now costs $10,000.

      Substitute third-party payer systems for upfront cash payments in a highly scaled, opaque pricing system and guess what–costs are going to go through the roof. Go back to a cash-dominant system where hospitals price their services up front and you’ll cut costs by 50-80%.

    6. Its that “something she may never use” excuse, isn’t it? Of course, she may need it, and then use the emergency room for sickness, never pay the bill, or go bankrupt, and then who covers all those costs? We do.

      I hear this claim all the time, but it’s really a load of horseshit–as if the lower/middle classes who don’t have insurance are responsible for the exponential growth of healthcare costs the last 40 years.

      Back in the 50s, a normal live birth and a two-day stay in a private hospital room cost about $1000, inflation-adjusted. It now costs $10,000.

      Substitute third-party payer systems for upfront cash payments in a highly scaled, opaque pricing system and guess what–costs are going to go through the roof. Go back to a cash-dominant system where hospitals price their services up front and you’ll cut costs by 50-80%.

  5. I think that if it is cheaper not to buy healthcare and simply pay the fine people should do so. Plus, once they get sick, they can join insurance with no pre-existing condition.

    The fine should be the same price as annual Medicare Premiums paid by seniors today. But Brains overhear didn’t think of that when he did the ACA. It’s my understanding that the fine will continue to go up.

    I still believe that the best idea would simply be to outlaw private healthcare insurance, have EVERYONE pay into Medicare just like we do for FICA (but include capital gain income as well), and allow doctors to not accept Medicare patients and take cash payments.

    The very best doctors won’t be in medicare. That’s fine. It’s how it is now. In NYC, most of my Doctor friends don’t take any insurance at all. As mandated by law, they will give you an ICD-9 and treatment code and that’s it.

    By having 300,000,000+ people in one insurance pool, there will be no need to check eligibility. Just a verification of the diagnosis and the treatment. And, your social security number can be your policy number.

    1. I still believe that the best idea would simply be to outlaw private healthcare insurance, have EVERYONE pay into Medicare just like we do for FICA (but include capital gain income as well), and allow doctors to not accept Medicare patients and take cash payments.

      So you can opt out of the system and pay the doctor cash, but you’re not allowed to do anything to mitigate your financial risk?

      Private health insurance is just a financial tool to help individuals manage risk. That’s all it should be.

      What’s gotten fucked up is that we’ve started treating it as a means to trick other people into absorbing your risks.

      1. Indeed. Repeal all the coverage mandates, community rating, and tax incentives, and the perverse incentives disappear. Private insurance is fine.

    2. Please post when you aren’t high. Thank you.

    3. With Private Health Insurance, once you require expensive or catastrophic treatments, after years of paying premiums, the Insurance company will simply weasel out of paying the claims and drop the individual.

      Then, that individual comes to me, the tax payer.

      Private Insurance, in my opinion has too much of a free ride. They don’t have to cover old people (65+ are covered by medicare), they don’t have to cover poor people (Medicaid), and the people they do cover, they as I mentioned above just weasel out of the expensive stuff.

      If you believe in a way of mitigating risk, you can’t beat a 300,000,000 pool

      1. With Private Health Insurance, once you require expensive or catastrophic treatments, after years of paying premiums, the Insurance company will simply weasel out of paying the claims and drop the individual.

        False.

        1. Several people went in front of congress to discuss their gripes with the insurance company.

          The movie SICKO depict various families with insurance in which they weaselled out of the claim.

          The statement that 80% of Americans are happy with their current health insurance policy is gargbage.

          That statistic is a meaningful as taking the last four digits of your social secuirty number and dividing it by the month of your birth.

          The real question should be of the people requiring expensive catastrophic and emergency care, how many of them were happy with their policy.

          1. Ha! Michael Moore and some congressmen were able to dig up a few examples of people, and didn’t get the insurance companies’ side, so clearly you are right!

            1. You don’t have to believe Michael more, these people are real. And the real question is of the people requiring expensive catastrophic and emergency care, how many of them were happy with their policy.

              It’s nowhere near 80%.

              It’s why there’s a push to fix the current system.

              1. If only there was some mechanism by which companies that don’t make their customers happy are made to suffer the consequences, while companies that do make their customers happy get to reap the benefits…

              2. what i don’t believe is their edited interviews, without any response from the insurance company. i’m sure these people think they were screwed, but believe it or not, sometimes people are wrong.

          2. “Several people” is not evidence that companies generally deny expensive claims. Try again with less derp.

            1. You are hillarious. This is why they are address the healthcare issue.

              Unless you are OK with people being dropped and insurance weaselling out of the claim. That’s a differernt point.

              1. In other words, you concede that you have no evidence. When companies violate contracts they should be held accountable.

                1. Good luck takign AETNA to court.

                  And, by then, you or your kid is dead.

                  But I do concede to the fact that I don’t have these statistics handy.

                  1. Pretty much every state has special appeals procedures for health insurance denials, and they are typically quite fast. So you don’t need to go to court until you lose at a bunch of administrative levels first and, if you do, there’s a good chance your claim is questionable to begin with.

                  2. You’re kid won’t be dead. You get the treatment, and you just don’t pay the bills until the lawsuit pays off.

              2. You are hilarious if you think everything Congress tries to address is a serious and widespread issue.

                1. Post Hoc Ergo Proptor Hoc, all the way down.

          3. That question is only relevant if you think government should be in the business of making sure people are happy with products they buy and the decisions they make. You won’t find much support for that around here.

            1. I know I won’t get much support.

              I bring up this point as a challenge to the 80% of the people are happy with their plan.

              For Life and Death, can we please have a guarantee? Is that a lot to ask for ?
              Really?

              1. A guarantee of what?

                1. A guarantee that if the free market refuses to save my life or the life of my loved one, the government (tax payer) will pony up the money.

                  Our desire to murder people has no limit and is inelastic. We should have the same for saving the lives of our citizens.

                  1. I understand your sentiment, I really do, but once you start looking at the details things aren’t so simple. For starters, at what point is the risk to your life great enough for the government to step in? End stage cancer? What about early stages? What if your life can’t be saved because there is no cure? How about a disease like MS that comes with a significant decrease in life expectancy but may not be terminal in the usual sense? What if someone’s life is at risk because of actions they knowingly and willingly took?

                    Your once simple scenario (save my life) becomes very complicated very quickly. It could also get very expensive. So how much money are the taxpayers going to pony up? Who makes those calls?

                    And you want to open that can of worms because some percentage (which you can’t cite) claims they are unhappy with their health insurance coverage (for reasons you and I may or may not think or legitimate)? When other, simpler actions (say, more aggressive enforcement of contracts) may solve the problem, such as it is?

                    Sorry, but I’m not convinced.

                    1. more aggressive enforcement of contracts

                      I’ll be good with that.

                      You sound like you support death panels for people on public heathcare. That is, decide on whether or not life saving or extending life for some people in which the effort will ultimately end in death any way.

                    2. Maybe I will be OK with that for my Mother or even myself, but not my Kid.

                    3. You sound like you support death panels

                      How in the world did you arrive at that conclusion? I’m being serious, I’d like to know.

      2. do you have any evidence for your assertion that a private insurance won’t pay your expensive claim? if that were even remotely true, why are so many people spending so much money buying the product?

        1. See above.

          1. since we’re apparently arguing by anecdote, the fact that my father’s private insurance paid for his expensive cancer treatment must prove you’re wrong, right?

            1. It’s a slot machine.

              We should just simply pole the people that have had this problem.

              Insurance pays Millions of dollars all of the time. However, they do find ways to weasel out all of the time.

              1. and so does medicare and medicaid. no company or program will be perfect. but finding a few examples of the system gone wrong hardly proves the whole thing is bad. you’ve provided no evidence that they do this ‘all of the time.’ some movie from a hack with agency who regularly takes things out of context doesn’t count.

                1. If they’d do this all of the time, it would be more obvious.

                  It’s a slot machine. They don’t do it all of the time. And, different companies behave differntly.

                  Medicare and medicaid don’t weasel out and if eligible, you are not dropped.

                  1. The 10% denial rate must be a figment of reuters imagination then.
                    http://www.reuters.com/article…..6F20121113

                2. I do concede that I don’t have the statistics of the people dropped or the people in which health insurance refused to pay for treatment.

                  It’s a statistic I wish I had.

                  However, this is why the ACA is in action.

                  1. Shouldn’t you look this up before droning on about

                    With Private Health Insurance, once you require expensive or catastrophic treatments, after years of paying premiums, the Insurance company will simply weasel out of paying the claims and drop the individual.

              2. It’s a foregone conclusion that private insurers will drop coverage for expensive customers (apparently in the face of litigation for fraud and PR blowback), unless someone benefits from their coverage, in which case it’s just a crapshoot.

                1. I believe this to be the case from at least one person i personally know and from what I’ve read, the congressional hearings on the case in the 2000s.

                2. I’ve had several disputes with both healthcare providers and insurers. I never even had to go to court. All it took was a letter to the Texas Attorney General and Commissioner of Insurance, and problem solved. I even got a formal apology from one of the big insurers for one of their blunders. The pre-Obamacare system was incoherent, but it was better than the one-size-fits all crap sandwich that Congress mandated.

              3. We should just simply pole the people that have had this problem

                There’s a Freudian slip there I find illuminating when reflecting on Joffrey’s tendency to mount the heads of his enemies on poles.

                1. It’s not really a “Freudian” slip unless she’s proposing to “pole” people in the sense The Mountain might do with his “Great Sword”.

            2. My anecdote is that my parents, during my mom’s illness, had a much easier time getting the private insurer to pony up than they did Medicare. And when I say much easier, I mean Medicare put up roadblocks for the tiniest things like a prescription for fucking bicarb pills. As in, baking soda. And it got worse as they moved up the chain into opioids and marinol.

              1. How old was your Mom ?

              2. My sister-in-law works at a doctor’s office and tells me that medicare is, by a long shot, much harder to deal with and get payments from than any private insurance company.

                1. It needs to be reformed as well.

                  I believe getting the eligibility process out of the way and having a “Patient bill of rights” applied to Medicaire is needed.

                  It’s the entire system that is broke.
                  By no means can you simply take the Medicare of today and just work it.

                  1. You just get funnier and funnier. Guess what? There is already a medicare patient bill of rights- http://www.cms.gov/CCIIO/Progr…..ghts.html.
                    Shockingly, putting some stuff on paper doesn’t magically make all problems disappear!

                  2. Just the right top men in charge?

    4. Re: Alice Bowie,

      The very best doctors won’t be [sic] in [M]edicare. That’s fine. It’s how it is now.

      Unless you can show that a normal, average person requires the expertise of one of the “best doctors” all the time, then the question becomes why not simply allow people to purchase catastrophic health insurance (which would be like real insurance and not simply a payment system) so that people can receive the best treatment in case of an unforeseeable, disastrous even, while at the same time allow them to visit a regular doctor for routine checkups or treatment of simple ailments, out-of-pocket.

      Whenever the argument is posited that only rich people can pay for the best care, the people who make the argument never explain why would it be necessary for a person with the sniffles to be treated by the “best there is”. But don’t expect the left (who normally posit these fairness-based arguments) to understand scarcity.

    5. Do you have any idea of what will happen to unemployment if you make insurance illegal? Oh, I’m sorry, I forgot, you’re liberal, you don’t give a crap about people suffering for your dumbass ideas…

    6. There are a number of exemptions from the fine – probably the most obvious is if the cost of the lowest plan is more than 8% of your household income. Because NC opted out of Medicaid expansion, I would not be eligible for a subsidy even if I was inclined to do so. I am in the lowest cost plan – at my age (58), the premium is about $6k a year. That means if my household income is less than $75k, there is no penalty.

  6. “For most of the people who appear in the story, it’s a financial decision. They have tight budgets, and health insurance remains expensive under the Affordable Care Act, even with whatever subsidies they may qualify for.”

    It’s amazing how ingenious Barack Obama’s approach really is.

    If there’s something the working poor need but aren’t buying becasue they’re too poor? Simply sic the IRS on them if they won’t buy it!

    This has opened up a whole new world of policy prescriptions for solving the problems of the working poor–that no one’s really thought of since…since Marie Antoinette!

    If they can’t afford insurance, then let them eat cake!

    I guess the working poor should consider themselves lucky. Obama could have promised them all new fuel efficient cars.

  7. She was asked in 2008 and every subsequent election when healthcare was a major policy concern. If her candidates lost, that’s what sometimes happens.

    1. #votingisadutynotaright #socialcontract #statistsactuallybelievethis

      1. #mightmakesright

    2. The Jews were asked in 1933 whether they wanted Hitler as president. They their candidates lost, that’s what sometimes happens.

        1. It was really shitty for the Allied forces to show up and impose freedom on the prisoners at Auschwitz.

        1. He’s already showed that he’s a disgusting racist pig that hates brown people, so why not add murderous thug to his resume?

      1. I’m glad I didn’t have to make the Hitler comparison. It was also my first thought after reading Tony’s comment.

      2. Thus, you should always get your way all the time.

    3. Health care policy being an issue totally excuses Obama and the Democrats from completely fucking it up.

      You know, what to do with Saddam in Iraq was an issue clear through the 1990s. I guess you had no right to complain when Bush finally dealt with him.

      You really not even trying anymore Tony.

      1. Every time you idiots type some ridiculous Hitler-this Saddam-that bullshit nonsense you are making the case for your opponents, you gnat-brained imbeciles.

        1. Tony, that post didn’t say “Hitler”. That was the voices in your head apparently.

          It is not our fault you are too stupid or mendacious to respond to the argument. Your defense boils down to “since it was an issue and Obama won the election, his actions are by definition justified and proper”. That of course is insane. And if it were true, it would be equally true of the invasion of Iraq.

          As I said, you are not even trying anymore. Don’t you get tired of losing every argument and constantly defending the indefensible?

          1. The straw was the last global warming thread, where all of you, to a person, completely skull-fucked basic rationality over and over again. What defines you is you are so completely oblivious to just how dumb and isolated you are.

            But I sleep at night knowing that there are more Chinese teenagers snapping toaster parts together right this instant than there are libertarians in the entire world. Yeah it’s a mystery why I don’t treat you as I do other insane cultists and cross the street when I see you instead of engage conversation, but call me an optimist.

            1. Tony,

              When you start screaming about another subject, you are just telling everyone that you have lost the argument.

              You don’t do yourself or your case such as it is any favors by pretending that the fact that Obama won the election and talked about healthcare has any relevance to the question of how bad this law is.

              Even if he had promised to do just this, which he didn’t, that wouldn’t make the resulting disaster any less of a disaster or him and the people in congress who voted for it any less responsible for that disaster.

              Face it dude, the Dems fucked up. It will be a decade or more before they even have a shot at winning back the House. And chances are the public will never sign onto another big social program for a very long time.

              If this wasn’t doing so much harm, it would make me happy to think how badly this is going to fuck your cause.

    4. “She was asked in 2008 and every subsequent election when healthcare was a major policy concern. If her candidates lost, that’s what sometimes happens.”

      Tony doesn’t give a shit about minorities.

      In Tony’s mind, if you lose an election, you don’t have any rights–not even the right to complain?

      What a sick, selfish human being Tony is!

      1. He’s just living up to his affiliation as a Democrat. Democracy is mob rule, by definition.

        1. Jefferson used the term “democracy” as precisely synonymous with the term “republic”.

          Whenever I hear this observation repeated as though it has consequence, occurs to me that it has more to do with favoritism for the party which bears the “republican” epithet than with any sort of philosophical stance.

          It’s hard, for instance, to favor rule of some arbitrary “elite” over “mob rule”.

          However you define it, unless your alternative is a stateless society, all politics is one group clamoring for the ability to rule the rest with force.

          You aren’t any better for decrying “democracy” if your alternative is the statist “rule” of the GOP ? whatever prefix you care to attach to their archy.

          1. I’m aware that libertarians such as Badnarik have spent ample breath touting the all-important difference between “democracy” and “republicanism”. But, it occurs to me that, even if the difference is significant in practice or theory (it is not), it’s still misguided favoritism for one manifestation of a practice (government) which a libertarian ought to oppose regardless.

            Spending too much effort to favor the intolerably statist “republic” (go read Plato, and then Popper) when we should be opposing statism entirely reeks of yet-to-be-abandoned GOP partisanship.

    5. Re: Tony,

      She was asked in 2008 and every subsequent election when healthcare was a major policy concern.

      That same standard of validity should be applied to California’s Proposition 8, then. The people spoke, then that’s it. That is what sometimes happens.

      Before you entertain these facile notions, Tony, you should at least give them a little thought, otherwise people might think that you’re nothing more than a stilted ideologue.

      1. Both measures made it all the way to the Supreme Court. They’ve been through the entire gauntlet of American legislating. One lost, one won, and I don’t know what you want me to tell you except to engage the process and try to win people to your side. Because all you are doing is bitching and implying that you should get your way just because you’re that special.

        1. Re: Tony,

          Both measures made it all the way to the Supreme Court.

          So?

          They’ve been through the entire gauntlet of American legislating.

          And? What does that have to do with what you said? You clearly stated, in no uncertain ways, that elections decide the validity of a mandate. Nothing about courts or anything of the sort.

          Because all you are doing is bitching and implying that you should get your way just because you’re that special.

          Even if that was true – let’s say it is – what does THAT have to do with what you said and implied, Tony?

          1. I don’t know what you’re talking about but thanks for at least entertaining the notion that you may be a marginal narcissist psychopath with tyrannical aspirations.

    6. So Tony, Obama’s various scandals have been an issue for years now. Considering your attitude towards the winners of elections, I am sure you will have no problem with the Republicans throwing his sorry ass out of office should they take control of the Congress this fall. I mean they did win the election right?

      1. If they can get the votes, they have my blessing to try. Worked out great for them the last time.

        After all, wiping your ass with the constitution because you are mad that the other party won the White House is proper order compared to Obama’s various nebulous scandals that you hear so much about from fat men with drug problems and a microphone.

        1. After the mid terms Tony, it won’t be the Republicans you want to get rid of Obama. It will the be the Democrats up for election in 16. Why would the Republicans want him to leave when he will continue to do such damage to the Democratic Party?

          You think things are bad now, wait until Obama vetoes various bi partisan Obamacare fixes the Republican Congress sends him. The only reason he isn’t doing that now is because Harry Reid keeps the bills off the senate floor so various Dem Senators don’t have to vote on them. Everyone knows that if the bills ever come to a vote multiple Dems are going to vote for them out of self preservation. Watch what happens to the Democratic party when they no longer have the ability to keep them off the floor.

          1. It’s always so much fun watching you talk completely out of Sean Hannity’s ass. I must visit this planet you live on some day. I’ll wear gloves.

            1. Funny how you and shreek are obsessed with Sean Hannity.

              And even the Democrats are admitting that the mid terms are going to probably be a disaster. You know its coming. All you can say to yourself is “but even if they win they won’t be able to fix the damage we have done”. I guess if that makes you happy, have fun.

              1. All you’re talking about is how giddy you are that Republicans are going to win. That’s why you care about the law’s supposed failures. That’s all you care about. It’s rather apparent neither you nor they actually care about having a better healthcare system. It’s all about being made fun of in the high school locker room for your little dick and gerrymandering yourself a substitute in your old age. An honest conversation about the merits of the law would be more than welcome in my book, but that’s not what you want to have.

                1. Again Tony, you know the Democrats fucked up and are going to pay a huge price for this. All you can do is scream about how “but the Republicans won’t be able to fix the damage we did”.

                  While that is probably true sadly, it doesn’t do much to defend or justify the Democrats.

                  1. Let’s descend to the real world, just for a moment. In the real world, Obama and the Democrats managed to pass, via a rather great struggle, national Romneycare, with all its stupid pro-insurance capitalist trappings. I think it can’t but improve on the prior status quo, which you are welcome to make a fool of yourself by defending. And that’s good enough for an old pragmatist like me–for now. Better than the alternative by about one apocalypse.

                    Now what was that about death panels or whatever the fuck? Are you even bothering to describe the failures you insist are happening?

                    1. Well, if you’re right, the dems have nothing to worry about. It looks like they’re going to lose the Senate, but don’t you worry your pretty little head. When the Republicans hold both houses again, and have the purse strings and bicameral support for getting rid of this awful bill, we’ll talk about for whom the death panels toll.

  8. The New York Times today features a lengthy article profiling individuals who chose to remain uninsured this year.

    so profiling is okay when it’s done for good reasons.

  9. OT: Court upholds traffic stop based on anonomous tip. Well isn’t that convenient. Just got a tip that some chick was driving while hot.

    http://www.nbc4i.com/story/253…..nymous-tip

  10. But now she’s worried that she might lose her new coverage if work picks back up, her incomes rises, and the subsidy is no longer as big as it is now. “If work picks back up and I jump right back up there,” she told the Times, “then I’m stuck.”

    The Poverty Trap is a myth, you PEANUTZ!

    1. ObamaCare is giving her the freedom to not work!!!!

      By not working, she can get bigger subsidies, isn’t that AWESOME!!!

  11. “She qualified for a subsidy to help buy coverage through Washington’s marketplace, but said that she still would have had to pay around $135 a month for the least expensive plan, with a $6,000 deductible that she said made it unfeasible.”

    High deductibles suck ever worse for the working poor. A lot of them see a bill for $6,000, and it might as well be a million. Skyrocketing deductibles have been a big feature of ObamaCare.

    “The average individual deductible for what is called a bronze plan on the exchange?the lowest-priced coverage?is $5,081 a year, according to a new report on insurance offerings in 34 of the 36 states that rely on the federally run online marketplace.

    That is 42% higher than the average deductible of $3,589 for an individually purchased plan in 2013 before much of the federal law took effect”

    http://online.wsj.com/news/art…..1560398876

    If in addition to forcing rationing, stripping patients of consumer choice, discouraging investment in new technology, etc., the ultimate effect of the ACA is to force sick people to pay 42% more out of pocket? Then why not just deregulate the system and let people buy what they want (or not)–on the open market?

    Especially for the formerly insured who were forced onto the exchanges to replace their cancelled plans, they have to pay more out of pocket, now, anyway, by way of higher deductibles–specifically because of ObamaCare.

    1. Remember Ken, the problem was health care cost too much and too many people didn’t have access to it. Obama and his crew of super geniuses decided to address that problem with a bill that did absolutely nothing to increase the supply of health care available and in fact does a lot of things that have the second order effect of suppressing the supply.

      1. If Obama is proud of having increased the average sick person’s deductible by 42%, then he’s a hateful bastard!

        He’s making us all pay 42% more out of pocket and calling that a successful health insurance reform?

        I guess it’s a good thing he didn’t promise to bring our deductibles down, or our premiums would have skyrocketed!

        1. He is definitely a hateful bastard. I am frankly not sure if he was bright enough to understand all the harm this law would do. Even if he was just stupid, the results are the same regardless.

  12. There is something going on here I just do not get. I see polls stating that x percent of people like Obamacare, approval rates are inching up, etc. I also see stories about health care costs going down, but that insurance rates are projected to go up next year.

    In my personal experience, with my family and the people around me, I am only seeing the following:
    – Rates have already increased A LOT for worse coverage.
    – People losing health insurance from their employer.
    – The only plans available have deductibles so high, it’s not even worth having insurance.
    – NOBODY is having a positive experience with this law. No matter their party affiliation.

    This is completely at odds with the stories I am reading in the news. So either I live in some isolated pocket that is different from the rest of the country, or there is a huge disconnect between reality and what is being reported, and this whole thing is going to blow up even more spectacularly than it has been.

    1. Your experience I think is very typical. I think that first because the media is grasping for so many straws to deny that reality. If it wasn’t the reality on the ground, the media wouldn’t be trying so desperately to pretend it wasn’t. Second, not a single Democratic politician who is up for election this fall is doing anything but running from this law.
      It this law had any constituency of support at all, some politician somewhere would be trying to get that constituency’s support by defending the law.

      Lastly, if this law had any support or appeal on the ground, its dead ender supporters in the media wouldn’t constantly be saying “its the law” and “its too late to repeal it” as their primary defenses of it. Who in your experience ever defended a popular policy by claiming “well its just too late to repeal this thing”? No one I have ever seen. If this law were anything but abjectly horrible, they would be saying how great it is not “well its the law”.

      1. To be fair, many supporters of kinetic military action in Iraq tried to justify our extended stay there with “Well we can’t just leave now and waste all that sacrifice of blood and treasure.”

        1. Sure. But that analogy doesn’t work. They were saying “we can make this work”. The Obamacare people are saying “sure it doesn’t work but we can’t fix it”. To be analogous, the war supporters would have had to have said “we can never change our approach to the war even though we admit it is failing.” The Obamacare supporters are not even trying to fix it.

    2. Approval ratings are inching up because of enrollment numbers and the perception that the website is fixed.

      There are a fraction of voters who aren’t directly exposed to the law’s effects so they are just influenced by stories talking about all the signups and the website.

      These are probably D voters who have employer based insurance, and they only care about the politics. So they see the news and they think it’s going well, but what they don’t realize is that anyone who signed up at the last minute, probably wasn’t too enthusiastic about it and is only doing it to avoid the penalty.

    3. “How could Nixon have won? Nobody I know voted for him.”

    4. Evidently the people in your isolated pocket actually pay their own bills.

      They need to get with program of Obama’s fundamental transformation of America. The new progressive American paradigm is to get government welfare and/or subsidies to pay your bills.

  13. If her candidates lost, that’s what sometimes happens.

    FINDERS KEEPERS, LOSERS WEEPERS

    At least it’s an ethos.

    1. It really isn’t. See Jon’s contentions above re: Gulf War II: The Gulfening. If Tony et al. really bought that notion, there’d be no lingering opposition to Bush’s regime.

      But elections only have consequences when Dems take the reins.

      1. Is anyone claiming that the Iraq invasion didn’t happen or had no lasting consequences?

        If you think that what I’m saying is that all things all duly elected governments do are good then you’re a moron who can’t read. There is a point to electing the right people instead of the wrong ones.

        None of you are saying anything remotely substantive and it’s almost fascinating to watch.

        1. There is a point to electing the right people instead of the wrong ones.

          Yes Tony, if your team does it, you will think it is great no matter how bad it is. We already knew that. You don’t need to remind us.

          1. I think the ACA is kind of a hard suck of a law, but I’m not gonna endorse the nihilist party because it’s not what I’d prefer, I’m gonna stick with the people who to some extent are still interested in helping human beings.

            1. I think the ACA is kind of a hard suck of a law,

              Sure you do Tony. That is why you were so angry when it passed and voted Green in 2012.

              You should save that for the Democratic Underground threads you inhabit where someone might believe you. On here, you just make yourself look foolish and make us laugh.

              You hae defended this thing to the death. Now that there is no defending it and the harm it is causing is obvious, you lie and claim you never liked it anyway. Try again because you are just making us laugh.

              Moreover, even if it were true, so what? You still support Obama and will vote Democratic no matter what. Really all you are telling us is “sure it is a bad law, but I don’t care because being a Democrat is what matters not any of the harm they do.”

              If you had any kind of a conscience it might bother you to be an enabler for one side to do such harm. You don’t of course.

              1. There’s one reason and one reason only I will continue to support Democrats, and until the parameters of that reality change I have no other option: Republicans are psychotic morons who think governing means looting the country of all its wealth for their hedge fund and oil company friends, and have all but openly admitted they don’t give the slightest fuck if it destroys the country. One would think that’s a no-brainer, but then people who are convinced that poor coloreds are the one doing the pillaging don’t have much of a brain anyway.

                1. There’s one reason and one reason only I will continue to support Democrats, and until the parameters of that reality change I have no other option:

                  Yes Tony, you don’t care how much damage the Democrats do, how corrupt they are or how intellectually bankrupt their ideas are. All you care about is being on Team Blue.

                  If you had any integrity you would be a Green. You don’t of course Obama ordered the assassination of an American citizens, engaged in an illegal war in Libya, destroyed the health insurance of millions of Americans, used the NSA to spy on Americans, used the IRS to go after his political enemies, and did who knows what else and you will never hold him accountable. In your world, there is no crime Obama could commit and no harm he could do that would make you walk away.

                  That is who you are Tony. How does that not bother you?

                  1. Who said it didn’t bother me? Did it bother you when your team started a massive war based on lies, tortured people, and let a city descend into anarchy following a natural disaster, all before presiding over the worse economic collapse of our lifetime? No?

                    Surely you understand being practical. I may support the Greens on more issues than Democrats but they can’t win elections in our system. Stop playing dumb.

              2. And let’s stop pretending that you have any interest in this law helping people–you actively want people to die because of it so that your party wins congressional seats. That is how fucked up you are, and just you try and deny it.

                1. Re: Tony,

                  And let’s stop pretending that you have any interest in this law helping people–you actively want people to die because of it so that your party wins congressional seats.

                  We’re already familiar with the Think Progress talking points, sockpuppet. Why don’t you score some points in originality and get some ideas of your own?

                  1. Are they agreeing with me again? Perhaps you’re more accustomed to the uncanny coincidences that explain your alignment with the completely unprincipled plutocrat cocksucking you masquerade around as thought.

        2. Shut up! The Republicans rightfully won that election so you have no right to an opinion.

  14. I want to see a story about how many people have had to get lesser insurance because of this law. That’s one problem Shreek and the like don’t want to admit is real. It’s personally affecting me right now, I’m not going to the doctor for my back because I had to get shitty insurance compared to what I could afford a couple years ago.

    The increase of the insured is minimal at best, and everyone is worse off that was already insured. Great outcome… Fucking retards. But then again I don’t think this law was really intended to help people at all. It’s so stupid, that couldn’t possibly be the REAL motive.

    1. It is effecting lots of people. The majority of the people I know have seen their health insurance get worse as a direct result of this law.

    2. That statistic I have you up top is a testament to precisely that.

      If the average policy holder–specifically because of ObamaCare–has to pay 42% more out of pocket through deductibles before their insurance kicks in, then they are getting lesser insurance than they had before.

      That’s $1,500 that used to be covered–on average–that isn’t covered anymore.

  15. If only the American people understood what was best for them like Obama does.

  16. Obamacare is the stupidest law ever!

    1. It’s Romney care

      1. It actually is in some ways. That, however, doesn’t get the people who made Romneycare national off the hook.

        1. Fair enough John!

  17. I’ll tell you what friends. I’ve been avocating for a Medicare for All in which we improve medicare and have all 300,000,000 people covered in one plan. I believe that you can’t beat a 300,000,000 person pool to mitigate risk.

    My complaint is the cost, controls, run-around, and the slot machine (some get dropped and insurace weasels out of claims).

    I’ve been offering not-to-well-thought-out solutions…I admit that. This is what I really want:

    I want a government guarantee if I’m dropped or I can’t afford the care (without going bankrupt and losing my entire life savings in an effort to save me or my family member).

    Have whatever system you want as long as I have a guarantee.

    1. Sorry, but I don’t think I should have to pay for the same level of risk as a morbidly obese, drug-addicted, mentally ill welfare case.

      I want to pay a rate for health insurance that is proportional to MY risks, given my lifestyle and medical history.

      What’s wrong with that?

      1. That’s fine. You will do whatever for yourself. I’m ok. It can be insurance. It can be cash. Whatever.

        However, I want a guarantee from the taxpayer (separate item…or medicare itself), to save the lives of citizens in the event that the free market just didn’t work out.

        Our desire to murder people has no limit and is inelastic. We should have the same for saving the lives of our citizens.

        1. Isn’t that called EMTLA?

        2. EMTALA.

          Except we should reimburse hospitals for it. And we should let emergency rooms turn away non-emergencies. Have some screening room where they send people over to the urgent care clinic.

          1. I’m OK with that.

            BUt EMTALA should be extended for people with Cancer and Chemo. It doesn’t now.

            World Problem Solved !!!

            1. Can’t really support that given that chemotherapy’s benefits are so questionable. And cancer is just one of many illnesses that are life threatening. People are terrified of it, but kidney disease will kill you just as quick. We can’t just be providing free treatment for any life-threatening illness.

              1. Not Free!

                Only when people don’t have money to pay the doctor or when insurance weasels out of the claim.

                I’m OK with taking Aetna to court as long as I’m getting the treatment for me or my family.

        3. I want a private option.

          There has to be some way in which private insurers and private providers can contract with private consumers without providing care or service in any way to people on government programs.

          1. I thought of that as well.

            you are saying have a 100% free market except for those disabled, pensioned, and poor.

            Perhaps a Public clinic. Somebody brought up a good argument against this:

            THE VA HOSPITAL.

            Look how we treat our young men that we dupped into obtaining amputations and being injured.

            1. I’ve got some bad news for you: I’m not here for your benefit. The good news is that you’re not here for my benefit either, and wouldn’t it be a nasty world if you were?

              I think VA hospitals are a great idea.

              I’d actually be in favor of government clinics that serve poor people (or anyone else) for free–so long as that means private care providers are no longer forced to adjust their pricing so as to make private pay patients cover the losses they suffer on Medicare and Medicaid patients.

              You may find this hard to believe, but I also think there should be private options for food and housing.

              1. I’d be fine with having free clinics for the poor too. Sort of like in Mexico where there is a robust free market for private medical care, along side a system of crappy free clinics.

                1. I don’t want what they have in Mexico.

                  Even our current system is better than anything they have in Mexico.

                  1. Have you actually been to Mexico and experienced it?
                    Are you aware that Mexico is a common destination for Americans engaged in “medical tourism” ?

                    1. Plastic Surgery is EXCELLENT IN MEXICO.

                      And there is some ONCOLOGY that is performed that is experimental here.

                      But the rest is lousy.

                    2. I’ve used hospitals in Mexico.

                      The care I received there was really good, and the facility itself was like a resort.

                      http://www.starmedica.com/_EN/default.aspx

              2. We should watch out for each other.

                I guess that’s the #1 thing I hate about libertarians. It’s the selfish aspect of it all.

              3. The VA Clinics are terrible.

                And the reason they are terrible is for what Libertarians site all of the time: It’s government run.

                I don’t want government run clinics for the poor. I’d prefer a voucher system.

                1. If you try to take the VA clinics away from the Vets, they’d be mad. I don’t have a problem with giving vets their own hospitals. I’m sure they’d be better run if they were run by private contractors.

                  What we have now is basically a voucher system for the poor–that’s the problem. When we send people on government programs to be served by private hospitals, the government refuses to pay the full price of care. You should me a hospital that’s closed over the past twenty years, and I’ll show you one with a high percentage of Medicaid patients.

                  What we need to do is insulate the private system from the government one. So that the market distortions that come from government programs don’t impact the private system.

            2. Obamacare is VA for the rest of us.

    2. Re: Alice Bowie,

      I’ve been a[d]vocating for a Medicare for All in which we improve [M]edicare and have all 300,000,000 people covered in one plan. I believe that you can’t beat a 300,000,000 person pool to mitigate risk.

      Yes, you can: a 300,000,001 pool.

      Or even better: a 300,000,002 pool.

      I want a government guarantee if I’m dropped or I can’t afford the care[…]

      Government guarantees are like those flashlights you keep in the home in case of a blackout – they never work when you most need them, except in the movies.

      I’ve been offering not-to-well-thought-out solutions…I admit that

      “Hi! My name is Alice Bowie and I pass opinions on complex issues without thinking.”
      “Hi, Alice!”

      1. You are such a big meanie Vato!

    3. Sadly, in life there are no guarantees. This is the big government lie. Paying police officers more doesn’t mean they will prevent you from getting robbed or arrive in time to save your life from a stalker. Buying insurance doesn’t guarantee you’ll get healthcare. Having an enormous government program doesn’t guarantee you won’t go bankrupt trying to save your own skin. Welcome to adulthood kiddo.

  18. This is a perfect example of how fucked up the overlapping of Obamacare with the entitlement set is. Free is acceptable. Cheap (for those making very little money) is unacceptable. Just having to put any skin in the game is unacceptable.

    It didn’t help that the very poor see a high deductible (5k) as bankruptcy equivalent to owing 100k of doctor bills. For most people HSA would work, but again the very poor would see so few dollars being added to the HSA that any major ailment would be equivalent to bankruptcy.

    What you will see next is an attempt by the administration to simply reduce the premiums even more – just to get the very poor to get insured. Of course that won’t pass through Congress, so he’ll just have to change the law himself again.

  19. When I lived in the USA, I used to fly to Mexico for dental care and for certain surgeries (cataract $700, d&c $90, colonoscopy $100 to $200) All VERY cheap even considering the airfare.

    Now we live here and it is the same good scene. Govt insurance is $23/month, but private doctors and labs and clinics are ridiculously cheap. $2/visit at “dr. Simi”, tooth extraction about $10, specialists from $15 to $40. Remember healthcare is NOT “insurance”, it can be finding a good doctor and paying for it in a free-enterprise country, MEXICO!

  20. My husband and I are both in school until next year and fairly young still. No health insurance for us. Actually, I probably would’ve tried to go on the exchange if I wasn’t paranoid about the security risk to my identity by using it.

    1. They have a nice toll-free phone number with helpful people standing by. Nice try. Of course, now it is too late for 2014.

  21. With children, we just couldn’t go without insurance. We are self-employed and could budget for the $469/mo high deductible insurance plan, but the new rates were $1200/mo! I had not considered owing the Fed your subsidy if your income increased, I’d only considered that any subsidy would be based upon last year’s income, regardless of how I was doing this year. So we went with Christian Healthcare Minsitries for the same $450 (plus Brother’s Keeper quarterly $25) and it is actually better than insurance! I posted a complete review here: http://www.christianhealthcare…..eview.com/

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