Friday, February 10, 2017

Not Trumpcare, GOPcare

  This is my latest missive to the Post Star. I'm expecting that soon Elise Stefanik is going to introduce legislation to just take away my health insurance.

     Color me still puzzled by the status of the Affordable Care Act. A few weeks ago President Trump's "terrific plan" was "formulated down to its final strokes." But then I watched his interview with Bill O'Reilly. After demeaning the United States in order to defend Vladimir Putin, he discussed the ACA. He said, "Maybe it'll take till sometime into the next year." What happened to the final strokes? Did his pen run out of ink signing executive orders? He went on to say, "Obamacare is a disaster. You have to remember Obamacare doesn't work, so we're putting in a wonderful plan." So, it's one of the signs of the apocalypse, but it can wait until next year or maybe the year after?
     As far as I know Rep. Ryan and Sen. McConnell are still saying they're going to repeal and replace around the end of March, and Rep. Stefanik that it'll be done over three years. These people are all in the same party. Do they not speak to one another? gives the figure 83,463 enrolled in the 21st district that will lose insurance with a full repeal. ACA has problems that are curable. Or did have. It was not the disaster it was portrayed as. It's becoming that, though. There are over 20 million insured who have no idea if they will be in 2018. Worse yet, Republican dithering has just about killed the health insurance market. To Trump's credit, what little there is, he's a late-comer to playing politics with it. It wasn't a fiasco before, but it sure is now. Give credit where it's due. Instead of Trumpcare, let's call it GOPcare.

Just want to link to couple other good pieces along the same line. Dana Milbank saying what I said better. But hey, I've got a maximum of 300 words. Actually I peter out after 270 or so anyway.

 The Obamacare repeal effort was already in unstable condition. Now its status must be downgraded to critical — and completely unserious.

After years of Republican yammering about the urgent need to repeal the Affordable Care Act and months of fruitless pursuit of an alternative, President Trump now says he may not unveil a replacement this year at all. And from Capitol Hill comes new word that Republicans aren’t even talking about a plan.

But sadly:

What Republicans don’t seem to have come to terms with is that, as a political matter, they already will be held responsible for whatever happens to health-care markets, even if they don’t introduce a replacement soon. An executive order Trump signed relaxing enforcement of Obamacare, and the constant talk of repeal, have injected a debilitating uncertainty into the health-care market — essentially beginning the unraveling of Obamacare with nothing to replace it.

Oh, I meant sadly for us not Congressional Republicans.

Take Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), who in 2011 called Obamacare “the single greatest assault on our freedom in my lifetime. It will destroy our health-care system. ... It must be repealed.”

Now Johnson has shed the hysteria. “Let’s start working with Democrats,” he said on CNBC. “Let’s transition to a system that will actually work, that, you know, Democrats are talking about. ... It’s way more complex than simply repeal and replace.”  

What's much sadder is this story about what the future looks like. It looks like Idaho.

Jamie Gluch lumbered into the kitchen and pulled from the freezer a bag of corn, the only affordable analgesic he had for his swollen face.

He had a rotting tooth. I had an infected wisdom tooth once and it was agony like I didn't know existed. I can't imagine what a rotting tooth would cause. 

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