Rabid GOP Attacks ACA Again
The fanatical anti-Obama faction of the GOP – which is almost the entire Republican Party – is at it again. They voted once more, in the House, to repeal the Affordable Care Act – the whole thing, not parts of it that they’ve voted on dozens of times since 2011. At least this time, three Republicans refused to hew the party line, the first time any Republican had voted against a repeal. This can appropriately be termed a crazed Congress.
Obamacare, all Republicans say, isn’t working.
Ignoring the facts
Interesting. At the end of 2014, the percentage of Americans without health insurance was 12.9, a drop from a high of 18 percent. The people who had difficulty paying their medical bills went from 41 percent to 35 percent in two years – a critical statistic, since the No. 1 cause of bankruptcies in the United States is medical expenses.
Perhaps most important, however, are these figures: In two years, the percentage of people who did without health care due to cost dropped from 43 percent to 36 percent.
Works for me, woman says
A friend in my writers group said Obamacare was salvation for anyone seeking to leave the corporate environment and work on their own. She just left her job to begin freelance writing and editing. Without Obamacare, her health insurance cost would have been $1,000 a month, and she would have had to stick with her job. It’s a small fraction of that under the ACA, and she can’t be penalized for her pre-existing conditions.
This is a plan?
Sen. Richard Burr, North Carolina
Sen. Orrin Hatch, Utah
Rep. Fred Upton, Michigan
So the rabid Republicans are becoming desperate. The ACA is working, and they have to come up with a way to stop it. Therefore, they announced last week they will propose an alternative to the ACA. Two senators – Orrin Hatch of Utah and Richard Burr of North Carolina – and Rep. Fred Upton of Michigan have come up with tax credits to help lower-income people pay for health insurance. They wouldn’t be required to carry it, but the credit would supposedly encourage them to do so. Good luck that. Why wouldn’t they just use the extra money to meet living expenses, and use emergency rooms when a medical crisis occurs, leaving the hospitals with unpaid bills, which they compensate for by jacking up the charge to insurance companies, which in turn raise rates?
The ACA isn’t perfect. It levies a penalty on businesses with more than 49 full-time employees for failure to offer health coverage. Thirty hours a week qualifies as full-time, and congressional members’ complaints that the designation encourages businesses to reduce hours to 29 are borne out to a small degree. And the penalty hasn’t produced sufficient income to cover subsidies for low-income people. The hourly issue, some experts suggest, could be solved by basing the employer penalty on the size of the business’ payroll.
Benign and beneficent government
Of course, the best solution would be to adopt some sort of government-operated system similar to those in Europe and Japan, places where the health-care costs are far lower than in the U.S. That, of course, won’t happen because the American people have been thoroughly brain-washed on the evils of socialized medicine. Strange, though, that it’s the only service which isn’t socialized, and people don’t get up in arms against the government’s role in tending to the infrastructure, building codes, airline traffic, utilities, food and drug safety, driver licensing, and on and on.
How do you end the brainwashing? Outlaw contributions by the health insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies to politicians’ election campaigns, so politicians would tell the truth on the issue. Who would make such contributions illegal? The politicians.
Obviously, it ain’t gonna happen.