OMG! Seriously?!?!

Discussion in 'Opinions, Beliefs, & Points of View' started by lightbeam, Sep 20, 2013.

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  1. lightbeam

    lightbeam Antiquities Friend

  2. pickwithaustin

    pickwithaustin Staff Alumni

    We can only hope that the "Obamacare" gets shot down quick and easily.
  3. lightbeam

    lightbeam Antiquities Friend

    Why you think 'Obamacare' (so called), is such a bad thing? Playing devil's advocate...
  4. Prinnctopher's Belt

    Prinnctopher's Belt Antiquities Friend SF Supporter

    95.2 million? My friends, in dealing with a military industrial complex which relies on war for its authority, always divide publicly disclosed amounts by four. That's the real number. Americans are suckers. You spend your time squabbling about drop-in-the-bucket public assistance programs, while the Pentagon robs your asses blind, deaf, dumb and in debt.

    "You don't actually think they spend $20,000 on a hammer, $30,000 on a toilet seat, do you?"
  5. pickwithaustin

    pickwithaustin Staff Alumni

    Because many of us do not wish to be forced to purchase insurance. It is not the government's place to tell me what to do for myself. I pay my doctor bills in cash and am just fine with that. Let them go after the people who don't pay, but don't force me to buy insurance that I don't want. It's okay for the poor because they'll still get their's for free... Middle class always suffers. Not only that, but companies are now cutting employee's from full to part time workers in order to avoid providing insurance to them. Thank's government, you sure know how to hurt the people (even if many of them don't understand that yet).
  6. lightbeam

    lightbeam Antiquities Friend

    Interesting. I can see your point of view now. Thank you!
  7. lightbeam

    lightbeam Antiquities Friend

  8. Raven

    Raven Guest

    How dare poor people try and afford things. They need to get more boot strappy that’s what I did. We have a huge problem, we are far too willing to allow those without a safety neat to be placed on the streets, and far to eager to think that those poor folks who can’t work should be punished, the disabled, the mentally incapable. Because fuck welfare, throw them in prison; one where the great providers of money can make money on them then. We are controlled by it, we live by it and die by it. And in the end we have sold ourselves for it. A high price to pay will come, exponential growth in a finite system. Flooring your car headed towards a brick wall.

    Your doomsayer,
  9. Acy

    Acy Mama Bear - TLC, Common Sense Staff Member Safety & Support

    I assume buying auto insurance is "forced" on people in the US as well. Big gas guzzlers are more important than people, though...I get that.

    (Yes, I'm from a place where I pay taxes that pay for my health care. We also pay an annual health care "surtax" based on our income. However, everyone can see a doctor if they are sick. Additional medical insurance covers "luxuries" such as a private/semi-private room, dental care, a portion of prescriptions, etc.)
  10. pickwithaustin

    pickwithaustin Staff Alumni

    Unfortunately, that is not an applicable comparrison. People are forced to buy auto insurance only as LIABILITY INSURANCE. This protects the other person that you hit... not yourself. This is completely different than the health insurance requirement. I agree that you should be liabile to others for damages you create for them... This is not the same mentality that the health insurance mandate surrounds. What is next? Forced Life Insurance policies? Forced extended warranties on autos and appliances? My son's company has made everyone except for management "part time" now in order to not be forced to provide insurance as the new Obamacare requires. Lots of people who needed those lower end full time positions now have to go look for a second part time job (and since it is a huge corporation, there are tens of thousands of employees affected by just that one employer - and they are not the only one doing this... thank you health care plan).
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 21, 2013
  11. Butterfly

    Butterfly Sim Addict Staff Alumni SF Author SF Supporter

    Yup, have to have car insurance here too but I understand why, nothing worse than being left out of pocket after a car accident. I'm from the UK so as you know, we have our beloved NHS. Healthcare is free to all, unless you are not a European citizen (I think but everyone in the UK is entitled to free healthcare) because it is paid for through our taxes. I do believe overall, it's a pretty good healthcare set up (despite what you may read in the newspapers and their stupid propaganda) which we are lucky to have. For the most part, care you receive in an NHS hospital will be much better than that in a private hospital. Private hospitals here are very short staffed and tend to be run with agency staff who have no clue how the hospitals are run. Where the NHS does fall short is with mental health care, it is absolutely abysmal, probably one of the worst in the developed world. Unfortunately the mental health sector have had a massive budget cut and have had to reduce a LOT of their services and close psych wards, so beds are few and far between and crisis teams can only do so much. There's literally nothing for those who have more than a mild mental health problem, but not severe enough to be in hospital, and for most, it develops to a point where they do get severe enough to be admitted to hospital.

    I am somewhat confused about the American healthcare system. It seems as though if you have medical insurance, you can get quick, fast and very good care. But it also seems as though most insurance companies pick and choose what they like to cover. Access to mental health care and psychiatric drugs seems to be very poor, as does needing to access necessary, life saving drugs such as cancer treatment, anti retiroviral treatment etc. I don't think it's fair that a company can just deny someone a necessary life saving treatment, it may not necessary fit in their clauses but to me they might as well just pull the trigger. I also don't think it's fair how so many people cannot afford the most basic of healthcare insurances. It's disgusting. Personally, I think America does need a severe healthcare reform, but Obamacare is not the right way to go about it.
  12. oval

    oval Well-Known Member

    im originally from europe but live in the US now. so i have seen both sides. i would like to first of all agree with everything pickwithaustin has said so far.
    up until now i had noticed how much better the care provided here is. doctors offices are better equipped, the staff has always been very friendly and professional, the doctors have always taken the time to listen to me and do everything possible to help me. i actually get medication when i need it. before when i was living in germany, i had maybe 3 minutes to talk to the doctor who then did nothing but "prescribe" me a tea. they want you out of their office as soon as possible so they can "treat" more and more patience.
    with obamacare i believe the health care standard is going to fall drastically here. i believe that much like in germany, doctors are going to try to increase the quantity of people they treat everyday, reducing the quality of care.
  13. Prinnctopher's Belt

    Prinnctopher's Belt Antiquities Friend SF Supporter

    How many people here have read the affordable healthcare act, all xx,000 pages and understand it?

    How many have sat through one of the hundreds of seminars to help business owners and providers understand it?

    If anyone has feel free to inform.
  14. Acy

    Acy Mama Bear - TLC, Common Sense Staff Member Safety & Support

    :D Good point. I haven't, but I still have opinions (lol), and I'm willing to share and be rebutted so I can learn something.

    Sounds to me like Obama's plan is to make sure that people can get care if they need it. My own country provides my health care through our taxes. Many people mistakenly think it is "free" health care. It is NOT. Our health "insurance" premiums are every bit as imposed on us as the obligatory insurance resulting from Obamacare.

    Pick, I agree that auto insurance is for liability for damages that we cause...especially to others. It is a little different from insurance that protects ourselves. However, I also think that the burden of poor health borne by individuals who are not paid enough to get expensive private coverage is a problem. Governments have responsibilities to their people, including finding ways to promote good health for all the citizens, not just the select few who can afford to pay the doctor in cash or through their expensive private insurance.

    So, a government could let its people suffer and fend for themselves. Or it could develop a health care program that is paid for entirely from tax revenues. Or it could develop laws for obligatory and affordable private/employer paid health insurance. Or...and...or...

    No doubt some employers laid off/fired employees, hired on contract, and reduced hours, causing hardship for many. I think that if the corporation and its investors were less adamant and greedy about the bottom line, jobs could have been saved. Layoffs, etc., etc. have been occurring for years and years, not just recently with the Obamacare proposals. Yes, employer-paid health care insurance coverage will affect the bottom line. But so do work-related illness/injury, work absenteeism due to frequent and/or prolonged illness, minor illness that could be treated if the person could afford care...Why is earning more money more important to investors and employers than spending a little of the profits to help the employees who do the work?

    Oval, with my "state paid" health care, I've experienced the rushed doctor thing. Seems like the patients all wanted the lunchtime and late day appointments, so those times are traditionally very busy. The doctors barely spend five minutes with you. On the other hand, I just had my physical exam last week, and the doctor spent about an hour doing it.

    The good thing where I live is that we have affordable health care available. I think that is what is Obamacare is aiming for - making sure that everyone can afford to get health care. Statistically, the poor are less healthy, therefore less able to improve their situations, and that again has an impact on their health...Good health and access to health care are foundations for helping people do well for themselves.
  15. pickwithaustin

    pickwithaustin Staff Alumni

    In the U.S., the "poor" already do get free healthcare. That won't change. What does change is that now many more will be poor or poorer, since the employers are cutting hours and turning full time employees into part time. We can sit and debate about whether it is greed on their part to do that or not, but it is not going to change the fact that if the bottom line is affected, someone is going to end up paying for it. In this situation, the rich won't be hurt - they likely already have good coverage. The poor won't be affected by the care, because they get free healthcare already. They will become poorer, however, or more over-worked as they now have to take on additional jobs as their full time positions move to part time.

    There isn't anything wrong with making health care affordable. Perhaps a better way to do that would be to regulate costs and set standards for what can be charged rather than just ignoring costs and making everyone pay an insurance company (and believe you me, the insurance companies are smiling big over the fact that now everyone has to buy insurance from them... You can count on their supporting contributions to the next political campaigns).

    What is most wrong with this plan is that it is not right to FORCE people to have to get the coverage if they don't really want it. On almost any other topic, if the subject included government control over people (forcing them to do something by taking away freedoms)... then everyone would be up in arms and cursing the "evil government." In this situation, the poor don't seem to realize that this affects them adversely because it gains them nothing, costs them more, and just like those who think that they are saving by shopping at Walmart, they're fooled again.

    As for understanding "Obamacare," as I have many employees in my business, I am well informed in what is contained in documents relating to this new act and it's dictates. With that thought in mind, however, has anyone here actually seen the documentation proving $20,000 hammer's? Logic and education has to be applied to all situations, not just by selection or by personal feelings.
  16. JmpMster

    JmpMster Have a question? Message Me Staff Member Forum Owner ADMIN

    What both a good percentage of the US public and all of our foreign friends that live in universal care countries do not understand is that the ACA is in no way universal care. The problems with it are so huge that they cannot ever be fixed in anything resembling its present form. The common example used is that is similar to the MassHealth that Mitt Romney enacted in massachusetts - if that is true then that should b example example to throw the plan out as in 6 years mass has gone from 22nd in debt in US States to 2nd and now healthcare in Massachusetts and insurance rates in Massachusetts are the most expensive in the country ( ) and per capita costs have increased by $10,000 in 6 years. Now the benefits are being slashed and quotas enacted to reduce costs.

    For our domestic uninformed and foreign friends, the difference in universal care and ACA is night and day. There is NO FREE CARE under ACA - it is insurance coverage that may or may not cover certain things like any insurance - the lower cost plans cover very little really, and have very high Co-pays and deductibles. AS an example , a family of 4 that earns $45/year may not be able to afford extensive healthcare without going into extreme debt or simply defaulting on the medical bills right now. That is a problem and needs to be addressed - however ACA addresses it by making it mandatory to purchase insurance. The insurances are still private companies and like all insurance they make money by ensuring they collect more in premiums than they pay in claims. This means we are mandated to enroll into something that is absolutely known to cost more than provide in benefits from the outset. Further, If you are not in the very very low income (where medicaid covers anyway) the subsidies to make it "affordable do not. The $45k a year for family of 4 means 2 kids and 2 full-time working adults at about $11/ hour. This is very far from the "rich" that liberals claim will be footing the bill and should pay more. It is under 200% of the poverty level and will get "very large subsidies" to offset costs. If you go to the subsidy calculator you will see by plugging in 2 45 year old adults and for fun call them smokers as the adults and 2 children under 20 non-smokers. They do not have employee coverage available.

    The premium for this insurance in the "middle level" silver plan which is lower coverage than 85% of employee plans in US is $16,907 - mandated to purchase. Yes, they are 191% poverty level so they get a good sized subsidy - meaning the tax payers in general pay for part of the coverage. The part they still need to pay is $7009/ year. So this family of 4 now has a government mandated new bill for nearly $800/month. $45k a year is a long way from rich and I know I could not afford a new bill starting on Jan 1,2014 for $800 a month at substantially higher income so I have no clue how the middle class workers are going to be able to afford it.
    That is not even the worst part. This healthcare insurance mandated on them to buy has a $2500 deductible, which means the 1st $2500 in covered costs are still the responsibility of the family to direct pay. In addition , there is still after the $7000 in premiums and $2500 deductible (so $9,500 out of pocket costs before insurance pays a single dime) a copay of $40 for an office visit with a GP and a prescription copay of $40. While the premiums and deductibles are both lower for very low income, by the time you get to less than 2x the poverty line, and still very very low middle class, the healthcare costs are going up astronomically for the vast majority. The only situations that are helped are in the cases of catastrophic care and illness. If one of that family happens to get cancer, yes it will be a good benefit, but for the vast majority on a year to year basis it is simply costing a LOT of money they do not have. The ACA also had the option of states expanding medicaid coverage for the poor - to up to 133% of current income levels. The issue is , only 22 states did. In the other 38 states now the ACA will exclude many very poor because they make too much or have other exclusions for typical Medicaid and the subsidies do not start until the 133% mark so any within that 3-5k band will not have either ACA or medicaid available.

    Unlike universal care which you pay taxes but have no monthly premiums to for profit insurance companies, this is an extra monthly bill for the entire middle class uninsured. And they still cannot afford it anymore than they could the insurance without a legal requirement to buy it. If they choose not to purchase then they will be fined for every household member that is not insured. This will be in an additional tax penalty and is being listed as a method to fund the ACA - so now the people that cannot afford 10k a year for premiums and deductibles and have no health coverage will be fined (after the 3rd year is $1,450/year per individual not paying for insurance) as a means to make healthcare more affordable to others. The entire health and tax system in Europe and Canada is structured to pay for this care - you are used to the 20+% VAT and very high taxes and pay an equal amount out for your healthcare but it is part of your budget, not simply adding $1000/ month bill to the middle class budget of uninsured. We do not have VAT to offset or the income tax receipts you have. You also do not have to pay out of pocket for $2500 first before "free care" nor have $40 co-pays for basic appointments and prescriptions that the ACA has. The ACA simply takes the worst of both systems by having insurance companies and deductibles and letting them decide what to cover, and adds to it the Quota Care mandates by governments and longer waits for appointments, fewer specialists, etc imposed by the government to try to keep the government portion of the insurance premiums in check.
  17. Acy

    Acy Mama Bear - TLC, Common Sense Staff Member Safety & Support


    OK, the very poor can be eligible for Medicaid and state health coverage, with some variations on eligibility if I understood what I've read about it. Not everyone gets approved for it, but they can't afford the care they need, and they can't afford the insurance that would cover the care they need. That would be a problem. Also, what about the "working poor" - the people who have stable jobs and incomes but who still don't earn enough to get by, to afford private coverage, but earn too much to be eligible for Medicaid? (And I'm not talking about people who are "living a 'high life' beyond their means," I mean people truly just getting by.)

    How much does it cost an employer to insure an employee to the standards proposed? Are companies saving more than they'd be spending on insurance benefits for those who remain? I can imagine that small companies that don't have big revenues might struggle with how to pay for insurance for everyone and still stay in operation. I'm not so sure about big corporations with huge profits. (I'm sadly very cynical. I worked for a law firm a while ago when a mulit-million dollar deal went through. The board of directors of the vendors' side wanted another $200K± along with the millions they were going to get. The clever lawyers and executives decided to take away employee benefits to get that money. Each member of the board took away about $20K extra because the employee benefits were cut off. The affected employees lost who knows how much in terms of what they could then afford in health care.)

    I agree that the insurance companies are likely delighted by this. They're a business and their product is in hot demand. They could have had more purchasers sooner if they'd had more affordable policies in the first place, couldn't they? Maybe that could have been a focus in the past that would have helped to avoid this situation now.

    I see your point about being forced. No one likes their government to make sweeping "you must" changes. I tried to say before (without actually saying it - sorry) that a government could legislate state paid health care across the board for every citizen, which would be paid for directly out of taxes, which would increase regularly to cover the costs. The way taxes seem to work in most places is that the more you earn, the more you pay. So the rich would pay for the less well to do in this. Some people are fine with that sort of thing. I have the sense, Pick, that you might not be - that many Americans would not be. Which is fine and understandable. It's not how American society has operated in general. I do think it would be much more drastic than having to look after oneself and one's family with some affordable although "forced" insurance.

    Regulating fees, costs and standards is probably much easier if the folks deciding the fees, costs and standards are also in charge of paying out the money. That would mean government oversight, and that comes back to the point above. I can imagine some very unhappy medical professionals and some Americans saying, "Just who gets to say how much someone can charge for what they do? It's a free country! I should be able to earn as much as I can." In almost any other industry, most of us would say there's nothing wrong with wanting to earn what you're worth if you're good, specialized, and in demand.

    I'm not saying I have answers. I don't. Health care and how to fund it are complicated issues. I'm not convinced that any system will ever make everyone in a given country or jurisdiction completely happy.
  18. Acy

    Acy Mama Bear - TLC, Common Sense Staff Member Safety & Support


    Thank you for the background info. Wow. :scared: That's scary.

    Health care in countries that provide it from their tax base is good because some basic care is there. However, it's not ideal by any means. Taxes are very high here (approximately 40% if you earn over $50K, and there's an additional annual surtax based on income.) Health care seems to take the biggest bite of the tax revenue across the country. In spite of rising taxes, a variety of health care services and treatments are NOT covered by our programs (which ones varies from place to place). For example, they used to cover optical exams for eyeglasses. Then it went to every two years. Now it's not covered at all, except for children or visually disabled. If you do not have private insurance or employer insurance with eyeglasses coverage, your glasses are also out of pocket. Physiotherapy and psychologists are not covered here. Neither are chiropractors or massage therapists. Some blood tests and vaccines are not paid. For example, the shingles vaccine Zostavax is approximately $200. It is recommended for older people who have had chickenpox as shingles tends to strike older people. Shingles can be debilitating with long term health impacts. But the government doesn't see fit to pay for a vaccine that could save a LOT of people a LOT of pain and cut future health care needs.

    Health care is such a difficult issue to resolve. It is life preserving, but it costs so much and it is hard to justify the cost of "insurance" for things we might never need, yet feel blessed if we do need it and have it in place.

    I've been glad for where I live on a number of occasions. You've made me appreciate that even more.
  19. lightbeam

    lightbeam Antiquities Friend

    This is incorrect about LIABILITY insurance. You are required to purchase FULL COVERAGE insurance, covering both drivers in the case of a new car that has not been fully paid for.
  20. pickwithaustin

    pickwithaustin Staff Alumni

    Correct and incorret.
    If you are paying on your car, then you do not own it and it belongs to the bank. It is not "your" car until it is paid for. The BANK (or lender) requires you to cover their car to protect THEIR property. Full coverage on your vehicle is NOT mandated by the government in any way, shape or form.

    If you own the car yourself (have paid for it fully) then the government only requires you carry liability insurance to cover THE OTHER GUY. They do not require that you protect yourself.

    My statements, therefore, are correct. I was referring, you see, to a car that you OWN. If you are making payments, you don't own the car. I buy all of my cars outright and generally do put full coverage, not just liability, but that is a personal choice. When you don't own the car, it is the lender (owner of the car by lein) who requires full coverage insurance. The government does not require you to carry anything beyond liability - which is in line with the context of this discussion.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 22, 2013
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