Affordable Care Act (or Obamacare): My Thoughts

Thursday, June 28th, was a big day for Democracy, a veritable miracle.  Right-winger Supreme Court Justice John Roberts broke rank and voted in favor of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

There is one moment in my life where I cried over politics.  It’s when W was reelected.  I was tempted to immigrate to Canada I was so heartbroken.

That’s something that Americans do.  When individual Americans feel that their Democracy has dealt them a seemingly debilitating blow, they threaten or actually immigrate to Canada.

Yet, while I was wallowing in despair at the time I threatened immigration, now Conservatives are spitting mad.  Personally, I think the tantrums mentioning “socialism” and “communism” are laughable.  If you’re going to use the party line words taught by the Republicans, at least understand the meaning of the words before using them otherwise you’ll look like an idiot mindlessly mimicking deceptive Conservative politicians.

Furthermore (I think I’ve mentioned this before), research the legislation being discussed as debilitating socialist garbage designed to single-handedly bring down the foundation of America as we know it before actually believing that President Obama constructed the ACA for that purpose.

If you have access to the Internet and some form of a Dictionary, you can read the ACA word for word and make your own decisions instead of having Conservatives spoon feed you propaganda.

The website The Health Care Law & You allows you to download a copy of the entire law, outlines the key features, and gives you a timeline.  If you want to be a lazy idiot and trust the Conservatives instead of putting in a little effort, don’t let the US border hit you on the way to Mexico not Canada.  Why do Conservatives want to go to Mexico instead of Canada?  Because Canada is more “socialist” than the US because it has a little something called a “Single Payer system.”

I’m not saying the ACA is perfect.  I’m saying that it’s something.  Personally, I’m for a Single Payer system.  While the ACA will save the country billions and eventually trillions of dollars, a Single Payer system would perform just as well if not better.

Single-payer is a term used to describe a type of financing system. It refers to one entity acting as administrator, or “payer.” In the case of health care, a single-payer system would be setup such that one entity—a government run organization—would collect all health care fees, and pay out all health care costs. In the current US system, there are literally tens of thousands of different health care organizations—HMOs, billing agencies, etc. By having so many different payers of health care fees, there is an enormous amount of administrative waste generated in the system. (Just imagine how complex billing must be in a doctor’s office, when each insurance company requires a different form to be completed, has a different billing system, different billing contacts and phone numbers—it’s very confusing.) In a single-payer system, all hospitals, doctors, and other health care providers would bill one entity for their services. This alone reduces administrative waste greatly, and saves money, which can be used to provide care and insurance to those who currently don’t have it.

The Single Payer system minimizes the red tape, makes things less confusing, reduces frustration, and is generally a good idea for one and all.

While the ACA doesn’t condense all healthcare organizations into one government run program, it contains several provisions that improve the uncontrolled American Healthcare system.

  • Provides Coverage to Americans with Pre-existing Conditions: You may be eligible for health coverage under the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan.
  • Protects Your Choice of Doctors: Choose the primary care doctor you want from your plan’s network.
  • Keeps Young Adults Covered: If you are under 26, you may be eligible to be covered under your parent’s health plan.
  • Ends Lifetime Limits on Coverage: Lifetime limits on most benefits are banned for all new health insurance plans.
  • Ends Pre-Existing Condition Exclusions for Children: Health plans can no longer limit or deny benefits to children under 19 due to a pre-existing condition.
  • Ends Arbitrary Withdrawals of Insurance Coverage: Insurers can no longer cancel your coverage just because you made an honest mistake.
  • Reviews Premium Increases: Insurance companies must now publicly justify any unreasonable rate hikes.
  • Helps You Get the Most from Your Premium Dollars: Your premium dollars must be spent primarily on health care – not administrative costs.
  • Restricts Annual Dollar Limits on Coverage: Annual limits on your health benefits will be phased out by 2014.
  • Removes Insurance Company Barriers to Emergency Services: You can seek emergency care at a hospital outside of your health plan’s network.
  • Covers Preventive Care at No Cost to You: You may be eligible for recommended preventive health services. No copayment.
  • Guarantees Your Right to Appeal: You now have the right to ask that your plan reconsider its denial of payment.

This looks like a good list to me and benefits all Americans.  I was reading a sample of Ed Rendell’s book A Nation of Wusses: How America’s Leaders Lost the Guts to Make Us Great and discovered a passage in his introduction that summarizes the bases of the ACA perfectly.

Government can and should be a force to improve the quality of people’s lives, to help create opportunity for those who have none, to help protect the most vulnerable among us who cannot protect themselves, to make sure that even the poorest and most downtrodden in our society have the basic necessities to survive. (11)

The Conservatives insist on less government.  Yet, if there’s less government, who will look after those who are unable to look after themselves.  More and more of the middle class are losing their jobs, their health insurance, and in most cases, their houses.  Those people need help in the form of unemployment benefits, food stamps, and health services.

If there’s less government, who will assist the American people with reigning in the unreasonable regulations of the insurance companies?  Those regulations are in the best interest of the insurance company stockholders and not the American people who depend on that health insurance.  Remember this and this only:  Insurance companies are in the business to make money and not for the general good health of the American people.

They will do anything possible to not pay out, create any loophole that will stipulate less of a payout.  The reason why the ACA is unpopular with health insurance companies lies in one government regulation stating that 80 percent of a person’s premiums goes to the care of the payer while only 20 percent is used for service fees.

This means that the money you pay every month in premiums will mostly go to pay your healthcare bills and not find it’s way into the pockets of CEOs in the form of bonuses.

If 80 percent of what you’ve paid through the year has not been used on your health, then you’ll receive a refund check of the difference.

Only the top 1 percent (the billionaires and millionaires) will see a raise in their taxes because of the ACA.  This is fine because they should be paying their fair share.  If they won’t use their beloved tax breaks to create jobs, then they shouldn’t get them.

Here are some other reasons why the ACA is good for the economy:

  1. Obamacare will reduce the deficit. The Congressional Budget Office estimated in 2011 that Obamacare will reduce the federal deficit by $210 billion over the next decade. The law is expected to save about $1 trillion over its second decade, according to other CBO analyses. The CBO found that repealing the law, as Republicans attempted to do in 2011, would increase the deficit by $230 billion over the next 10 years.
  2. Health care costs for young Americans won’t skyrocket. More than 3.1 million young Americans have insurance thanks to Obamacare. Without the law, the cost of acquiring an equivalent health care plan would have risen dramatically at a time when young people are still struggling with the effects of the Great Recession.
  3. Millions of jobs will be created. Health reform will help create roughly 4 million jobs over the next decade, according to a 2010 Center for American Progress report, by reducing the cost of health care and making it cheaper for businesses to hire. The law will create between 250,000 and 400,000 jobs a year, and they will be spread across sectors: according to the study, the law will help create more than 200,000 manufacturing and 900,000 in the service sector by 2016.
  4. It will be cheaper for employers to provide health care. American businesses are under tremendous pressure thanks to rising health care costs, and these costs are often passed on to customers (one study estimates that each car sold by General Motors contains $1,200 in built-in health costs). The ACA, however, will make it cheaper for businesses to provide care, and not just by reducing the cost of care. Small businesses are already receiving tax credits contained in the law to help insure their employees, and it has already offered more than $4.7 billion in reinsurance payments to companies that are providing health care to retirees who aren’t yet eligible for Medicare.

It seems that this bill will do the exact opposite of what the Conservative politicians are touting.  The bill will reduce the deficit, keep health costs under control, create jobs, and make things easier on employers.

This bill is not the end of the world.  As I said, it’s the beginning of something better.  In the 21st Century, America should not be the only industrialized country left out of the loop when it comes to caring for its citizens.  The ACA is not socialism, it’s the next step for America to reclaim it’s greatness.

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2 thoughts on “Affordable Care Act (or Obamacare): My Thoughts

  1. Alison Baker says:

    If Dubya would’ve been smart instead of using his 2 terms for a family vendetta, the ACA would’ve been nicknamed “BushCare” or “DubyaCare”. The bill’s a Republican idea with Republican language because businesses benefit so much from it.

    Such fools.

  2. Thank you for all the information, it is very appreciated! I would Lille to address the comment about ACA being called GeorgeBushcare & how close the Republican Party was to implementing this Llaw because of the huge benefit to business.
    Although Republicans have a long history of programs they’ve designed to help the Middleclass like “No Child Left Behind”, & the work they did making prescriptions for seniors so affordable, but oh wait, that’s right both those programs did nothing 2 help education or seniors. Because Republicans never do anything that helps anyone except for their donors the fatcat

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