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home : opinion : opinion May 25, 2016

10/11/2013 3:47:00 PM
Rhetoric heating up as reality sets in over Obamacare
Bill Forhan

Signed up for your free health care yet? If not, now's the time to log into and see what your free health care is going to cost.
Open enrollment began last week - Oct. 1 to be exact. To examine your options you need your birthday, zipcode and estimated annual income. You can search for Bronze, Silver and Gold insurance packages with Bronze being the cheapest and Gold the most expensive. All of the premiums quoted on the site are estimates subject to change based on the final tax subsidy you are eligible to receive.
Paying the premium does not provide you with full medical coverage. You will still have co-payments and a deductible. The least expensive plans have a substantial deductible - some reaching $6,350 per year. The plans do have an "out of pocket maximum" that limits your exposure but for those with limited income the annual maximum out of pocket costs can approach 25 percent of your income not including premiums.
What we really have here is a standard set of insurance policies that have been negotiated by the government on your behalf. The simple chart I have put together (see sidebar) points out the simple truth that younger people pay more and richer people pay more for the same coverage plans. In other words, the young are subsidizing the elderly and the rich are subsidizing the poor. For all of its promised benefit it is really just another plan to redistribute wealth from the rich to the poor and the young to the old.
Well at least we don't have those greedy insurance companies lining their pockets with excessive profits!
Oh, wait - it looks like it's those greedy insurance companies that are actually providing the insurance plans - Blue Cross, LifeWise,
Well, at least the government is overseeing the plans so what could possibly go wrong? After all, look at the wonderful job they are doing with Social Security and Disability. And, it will all be run by the IRS so we know everyone will be treated fairly and objectively.
Don't get me wrong here. Our system of health care is seriously flawed, but the Affordable Health Care Plan is anything but affordable.
More importantly, it does not address any of the issues that would actually make a difference. For example, It does not address tort reform or the fact that the government has been controlling its Medicare costs at the expense of non-Medicare patients for decades. As a result, the private sector has made up for the governments attempts to deliver more than it can actually afford. What happens when the private sector is no longer able to do that?
We need serious reform of the laws and policies that impact the cost of health care.
Undoubtedly there are people without health care insurance who are desperate to find a policy that gives them some peace of mind. For those with a pre-existing condition that precludes them buying insurance, Obamacare is a lifeline. But this is not the panacea that has been promised.
This plan is too expensive and will not fix the problem. They have passed it and now that we know what's in it. We need to throw it out and start over.
This time we need a truly bi-partisan solution. A solution that includes the private sector - doctors, insurance providers, and small business owners - in the discussions. When Obamacare was developed it was written by a committee of Democrats - no Republicans need apply - whose agenda was to expand government not to fix health care. Now, even the unions who called for this are screaming it won't work.
For the past week the rhetoric has been to pass the budget with Obamacare because it's the law of the land.
The problem is that it is bad law that will kill more jobs, raise our national debt and not fix the problem - unaffordable health care.
The Republicans are right on this one. Call your representatives and especially your Senator's and tell them to join the Radical Republicans in doing the right thing.
We need health care reform but we need to fix the problem without bankrupting the country.

Reader Comments

Posted: Saturday, October 26, 2013
Article comment by: Tom Rissman

Thank you.

Posted: Monday, October 14, 2013
Article comment by: Tom Rissman

GREAT job again Bill. You need to run for office!

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