You already know where I’m going— it’s in the title after all. At this time, I do not support the health care bill. Now before I get into the many reasons why I do not support this legislation, let me spell out the following disclaimers.
I am a small business owner. I am not a Republican. I am not a Democrat. I proudly check the NPA (no party affiliation), when I register to vote for one simple reason— I vote along my ideals and conscious; not along some party mantra. As a general rule, I feel that the government continually mismanages money and our current news media fails to account the statements of government officials to any fact check or truth test.
With that introduction out of the way, I can now describe why I believe our government failed us— as we should expect it to. After all, the Founding Fathers did not want us to depend on our government; and for good reason.
Money, Money, Money
First thing, let’s talk money. The government told us that the new bill will significantly bring down insurance premiums. Sadly, this is wrong. At BEST, the new model brings down premiums $100.00/year. And that’s ONLY if you’re in the “small group family market” or “large group single market.” Individual families will see an increase of $2,100.00/year on their plan. The majority of us will pay either the same, or slightly more for coverage (unless you’re a business).
Let’s remember this: The bill that passed was basically written by America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP). You know AHIP, right? They’re the national organization representing roughly 1,300 health insurance companies.
You can’t turn on the news or walk down the street today without hearing about recessions and lost income. Unless of course, you’re in the business of health care. Since October 2009, health care stocks have risen almost 30%. Our new health care laws, written by the health care industry, requires us to purchase health care insurance from the companies that pooled together and wrote the law. The health care companies also significantly contribute to most of the people who voted for the law as well.
How does this boil down for the middle class? Under the new bill, a family of four living on $66,000 will be paying more than $5,000.00 for insurance premiums and be responsible for another $5,800.00 in out of pocket expenses. Of course, they’re also paying another $16,000.00 in federal taxes. So before any out of pocket expenses, this family has $4,125.00 per month to cover all of their living expenses. Bottom line: Middle class will be paying approximately 9.5% of their income on mandated insurance that will cover approximately 70% of their medical expenses.
The bill was touted to stop medical bankruptcy. But, with this bill there’s an $11,900.00 max on out of pocket fees (on top of premiums). Let’s remember, even in 2009, 62% of the bankruptcies filed were medical related (and 75% of those people had insurance). There’s nothing this bill provides that will financially help an average family that must endure a serious medical problem.
You know, the Revolution started in Massachusetts
Massachusetts implemented their health care reform in 2007 and it’s very similar to our new Federal plan. A “3 years later” review from the Kaiser Family Foundation found that 3/4 of Massachusetts’ uninsured had obtained insurance— which is great. Of course, 21% of the population went without needed care because they could not afford it. Also, wait times for seeing doctors increased and health care costs rose.
Massachusetts needed to find many ways to handle the increased health care costs. This included terminating coverage for 30,000 immigrants (legal immigrants with green cards who pay taxes), no longer automatically enrolling low-income residents, and adding $100 million in new fees to private companies.
Of course, with recent Federal overhauls, these same legal immigrants are not entitled to Medicaid or other Federal aid. Nothing says “Welcome to America” better than forcing people to pay taxes and fees for services you then prohibit them from using. Of course, I guess it’s easier to pick on a group of taxpayers that aren’t allowed to vote.
With Massachusetts as the model, we’re in for a great ride.
Let’s wrap it up.
I think the item that bothers me most has to be our Federal Government forcing us to buy health insurance from private companies. I understand the states do this for things like auto insurance — but there’s also a big catch. If I don’t own a car, I don’t need car insurance… How do you do the same for health insurance?
As an American in favor of limited government, any law requiring loss of freedom angers me. Our government passed laws, written by the health insurance companies, requiring us to pay those same companies for health insurance. The much promised transparency for this process never saw sunshine, and sadly there is too much rhetoric going by without adequate investigation by our “free” press.
AT&T, Verizon, 3M and many other large companies have already warned shareholders of profit reduction (in billions) from new health care costs. Our new bill is estimated to cost $1 trillion dollars and from what I can see, not only hits us in taxes— but also in out of pocket expenses.
I’ve had health insurance since I started working full time in 1994. I’ve switched jobs (many times) and have started several businesses along the way. I’ve maintained health insurance the entire time.
This law costs me more while providing me with less. Should I choose to buy better insurance to cover the weak areas, I will be taxed an additional 40% for having a “Cadillac” plan.
So let me ask this: How are you benefiting from this new law?
- Massachusetts Takes a Step Back From Health Care for All (NYT)
- Massachusetts Health Care Reform: Three Years Later (KFF)
- The hype behind the healthcare reform bill (AnnArbor.com)
- Fact Sheet: The Truth About the Health Care Bill (Huffington Post)
- AT&T to Book $1 Billion Cost on Health-Care Reform (Business Week)
- An Analysis of Health Insurance Premiums Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (CBO)