Monthly Archives: October 2013

F*&king stupidity – an update. :-)

I just thought I’d update you on the latest f*&king stupidity from the US about ObamaCare…cos I know you are all interested. 🙂 I’m thinking that after you read this you might think stupidity is not the right word.

Since yesterday, I have learned that the US version of our Medicare is a joint state and federally-funded programme called Medicaid and it is only for the lowest income earners…and I mean low. A woman who earned more that $1200 a month wasn’t eligible, for example. That’s $14,400 a year, to save you doing the maths. 🙂 And ObamaCare doesn’t kick in until a higher income level, so there is a whole group of people who don’t fit into either system….in fact about 8 million apparently. So, to cover this gap, the federal government has said they’ll fully fund an increase to the Medicaid programme for 3 years and, after that, the states will take on an increased share of the extra costs, building up to a maximum of 10% by 2020. So just to clarify, Medicaid is jointly funded by the state and federal governments of America, and the expansion of the programme will be fully funded by the federal government for 3 years and funded 90% by them after that.

Now, here are a few point from a report done by the American Academy of Family Physicians….

1) If all 50 states implemented the Medicaid expansion, it would cover an additional 21.6 million of the 41.2 million currently uninsured adults (or 52%).

2)The additional cost of implementing the Medicaid expansion is estimated to be only a 2.8 percent increase from what states would have spent between 2014 and 2022 without the health reform law.

2.8% increase in costs to give healthcare cover to an additional 21.6 million people…sounds a no-brainer right?

Wrong!!!! 26 states have indicated they will not sign up for the increased funding…anyone care to guess which party is in government in each of these states?

F*&king stupidity!

For any of you who haven’t been following the shutdown in the US, I’ll give you a quick update. Obamacare is a law that was passed to ensure that everyone in the US could have affordable healthcare. They do have a Medicare-kind of system over there but it is very limited, apparently, so you really need to have private healthcare. And even if you can afford private healthcare, the providers are very good at denying claims…in fact they train their people to always so ‘no’ first time around. For a good analysis of the US system, watch Michael Moore’s documentary, Sicko.

Anyway, I digress. So, the law was passed and was due to come into effect on the 1st of October 2013. The Republicans think that this bill is the worst thing to ever happen in the US…apparently worse than slavery, the Great Depression or the Twin Tower’s attack…so they decided that they would block government funding, by not passing the Budget, unless the Democrat agreed to postpone the implementation date. The Democrats said ‘go to hell in a hand-basket’, and so funding was blocked and the government doesn’t have the money to pay for lots of it’s staff. This means that 1000’s and 1000’s of US public servants have been sent home on leave without pay.

The Republicans are accusing the Democrats of not being willing to negotiate, while the Democrats are saying that the law has been passed democratically by congress, that it has survived around 40 attempts by the Republican to overturn it, that Barack Obama won a second term as president, with a bigger percentage of the vote, after the law was passed and that the law has been confirmed by the US Supreme Court as being constitutional, so it has had plenty of negotiation. And I think they probably have a point. 🙂

I think the stupidity of the Republican’s position is exemplified by this interview exchange between a TV host and a Republican strategist…

TV Host (TVH) – Why are you so against Obamacare?

Republican Strategist (RS) – Because it is one of the worst things to happen in American history. And it is unconstitutional.

TVH – But the US Supreme Court ruled that it was constitutional.

RS (Looking totally stunned, with a ‘how dare you ask me a sensible question like that’ kind of look) – Um, yes, but it had to go all the way to the US Supreme Court for that to be decided.

I had a big WTF planned but I’ll leave it to you to determine the stupidity of this statement. Just to help you though, the Republicans were the one who took the law to the Supreme Court…and the Supreme Court is the only body who can rule on Constitutional matters. 🙂