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Letting Obamacare fail means letting people suffer longer

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President Trump committed a terrible act of political cynicism today when he told White House reporters “We’ll let Obamacare fail and then Democrats will come to us and say ‘How do we fix it?” and followed that up suggesting that more Republicans will be elected in 2018.

This is unconscionable, because people in America are suffering and need relief right now, not in 2019.

To listen to Democrat talking points, you’d think that America was one giant hospital and everyone had pre-existing conditions requiring expensive and rare treatment. But everyone knows that’s simply not so.

Most people see a doctor because they have a common, acute, treatable condition, like the flu. Most people can easily get the prescription medicines they require at the local grocery store pharmacy. Most people don’t need all the “health” coverages mandated in Obamacare, and most people will never need rare, expensive treatments.

But we’re all paying for it.

Premiums are increasing at an unsustainable, double-digit rate, while benefits, choice of providers, and deductibles are shrinking dramatically. That means health care is costing the average family (not on public assistance) more.

I personally know families who simply stopped buying health insurance because they can’t afford it. They make deals with doctors they know, or just don’t go to the doctor, even to treat problems that should really require a doctor. They don’t want to sign up for Medicare since that limits choice even more.

I personally use Medi-Share, a Christian medical sharing ministry, which is exempt (thank God) from Obamacare regulations. I pay about half the premium I would be paying if I bought an individual plan.

At the small business I used to work for in management (and own a stake in one of the subsidiaries), I helped craft our insurance plans. Back in the mid-2000s, we hopped between carriers to get a low initial experience rate, then when the premium jumped, we’d jump again. By the time Obamacare hit, we had moved to a hybrid self-insured/high deductible health plan (HDHP) to help stabilize premiums. We didn’t like our employees paying hundreds of dollars a month only to shell out more when they need care.

Eventually, those HDHP plans went away, because Obamacare killed them. In 2013, we sold to a large multinational corporation, and they eventually integrated the employees into their big-company plan. I left in 2015, before that happened. The people I know who still work there are paying hundreds of dollars a month only to get a huge deductible, limited network plan–or they’re paying thousands a month to get what used to be normal coverage.

These are the people who are suffering. Those “corner cases” and sob stories make for selling newspapers and getting website clicks, and they make wonderful political grandstanding, but in fact they are not the problem. The problem started when government-social-engineers like Hillary Clinton (remember Hillarycare?) and Barack Obama believed they could turn the U.S. into Sweden or Canada, neither of which have the population or economy of California.

California’s legislature just punted on its own version of universal single-payer, because even they realized that it was impossible to pay for. (SB 562 would have cost $400 billion, more than twice the entire state budget.)

Obamacare was supposed to be a hybrid–a transition to allow every American to have health insurance and supposedly obtain health care. But health insurance and the number of people enrolled is a terrible measure of who can obtain care, at what cost, and at what quality or frequency.

But the Democrat talking points keep rolling on–22 million “will lose healthcare,” or is it 23 million? What about the 150 million that will lose healthcare benefits they used to have and in fact had grown accustomed to because they can no longer afford to pay for things they never use?

Obamacare created this mess, and now Republicans, who have the opportunity we’ve been waiting for the last seven years, the opportunity every Republican lawmaker campaigned on, the opportunity Trump campaigned on, have kicked every American voter to the curb.

They’ve failed at proper governing. The president failed to lead, and Congress failed to summon the fortitude to do what is necessary.

And now we’re at the end of the dead-end road called Failure Alley, and Trump had the nerve to say we will just let people suffer for a few more years.

There’s certain issues that every president can kick down the road, like Social Security entitlements (always predicted to be 15 years away from failure), Medicare, and the national debt. As long as the Treasury can print money, we can pay bills, and the public, like frogs in slowly boiling water, don’t feel it while the pot heats up.

Obamacare is not one of those issues.

We saw what happened to Obama when the Tea Party movement hit in 2010. Watch what will happen to Congress in 2018. It’s going to be very, very ugly, and we are going to end up with people much, much more populist and less conservative than the original movement.

The Trump-GOP establishment has already begun blaming conservatives for this debacle. They would rather work with Democrats and go to a treasury-bankrupting single-payer solution than helping Americans get reasonable, free market health insurance.

This is no longer a political issue. It hurts average Americans. Republicans won’t be able to explain this away, and neither will the president, who sees himself above party (he calls Republicans “they”).

In a supreme act of political selfishness and cynicism, our elected government has betrayed the people it purports to serve and has failed to correct the injury. America will not forget.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Patrick

    July 19, 2017 at 4:20 am

    What was on the table? Revise O-Care with Democrat support. Wouldn’ that also mean letting people suffer longer?

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Entertainment and Sports

Fred Savage owns Deadpool in Once Upon a Deadpool trailer

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Fred Savage owns Deadpool in Once Upon a Deadpool trailer

I’ll admit, I didn’t even know this was a thing. When I heard about it, I assumed it was a spoof, probably put out by Ryan Reynolds to catch a few Christmas laughs. I was wrong.

Once Upon a Deadpool is a new edit of Deadpool 2 made with a PG-13 rating. Fox has been pushing for Reynolds to do a PG-13 version for over a decade, but the star has refused until now. He had two requirements. First, he Fox to donate money from the movie to a charity of Reynold’s choice. Which did he choose? A charity Fox is referring to as “Fudge Cancer,” though the charity’s real name would be better served in the R-rated version of Deadpool.

The second requirement is that Reynolds needed permission to kidnap Fred Savage.

Reynolds got both of his wishes and Once Upon a Deadpool was born. It’s due for a limited engagement next month.

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Guns and Crime

Legislators tell Allen West: Next version of First Step Act will cut loopholes

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Legislators tell Allen West Next version of First Step Act will cut loopholes

Last week, a handful of conservatives, including Lt. Col. Allen West and Conservative Review’s Daniel Horowitz, went after the bipartisan First Step Act, a criminal justice reform bill that has the backing of the President and many conservative lawmakers on Capitol Hill. Our complaint: why would the GOP support a bill that releases violent criminals and illegal immigrants?

According to legislative proponents of the bill, protections and benefits for both of these groups of felons have been eliminated in the next version of the bill that will reach the Senate floor. They reached out to West over the weekend to let them know they heard the concerns and are addressing them.

First Step Act: Response and Reassurances

https://i0.wp.com/theoldschoolpatriot.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/prison-553836_640.jpg?w=200&ssl=1The First Step Act is supported by many conservatives and law enforcement groups, including the Fraternal Order of Police, the International Association of Chiefs of Police, and the National District Attorneys Association. There are other proposals offered by those on the far left under the same banner of “criminal justice reform” that would release people from prison without regard to the danger they pose, including illegal immigrants and serious violent offenders. We must remember that there are some folks who are, well, as the ol’ folks would say, “just bad.” Additionally, some left-wing professors even propose abolishing all prisons partly based on their notion that the system is racist in nature. Hmm, I tend to believe that skin color or race has nothing to do with a person deciding to break the law. I just do not want us to go down the path of having criminals believe that there are no consequences, ramifications, for their actions and behaviors.

The legislators echoed our concerns and said the version that is currently available doesn’t reflect the changes that cut the loopholes. They say it will be impossible for these two groups – serious violent offenders and criminal illegal immigrants – to get the benefits of the bill. Many felons will be released early. Future felons will be given lighter sentences. That makes sense for many, but by no means should anyone in either of the two most dangerous groups receive sentence reductions, according to the letter to West.

My Take

Call me cynical, but lately I’ve changed my general rules regarding promises of politicians. It used to echo President Reagan’s stance on nuclear disarmament: “Trust but verify.” I now have to go with a more adversarial stance on political promises: “Show me proof, then we’ll talk.”

When the legislation is made available to the public, many will take a close look at it. I’ll personally be checking to see if there are any loopholes that would put violent offenders or criminal illegal immigrants back on the street sooner. If so, it’s a no-go for me.

 

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News

Hundreds search rubble in California for human remains

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Hundreds search rubble in California for human remains

PARADISE, Calif. (AP) — The search for remains of victims of the devastating Northern California wildfire took on a new urgency Monday as rain in the forecast threatened to complicate those efforts while also bringing relief to firefighters.

Hundreds of crews and volunteers were searching the ash and rubble where homes stood before flames engulfed the Sierra foothills town of Paradise and surrounding communities, killing at least 77 people in the deadliest U.S. wildfire in a century.

The fire has destroyed more than 10,500 homes while burning 234 square miles (606 sq. kilometers). It was 65 percent contained.

The rain expected to arrive Wednesday could cause wet ash to flow down steep inclines in the mountainous region, forecasters said.

Rescue workers wore white coveralls, hard hats and masks as they poked through debris, searching for bone fragments before rain could wash them away or turn loose, dry ash into thick paste.

A team of 10 volunteers accompanied by a cadaver dog went from house to house in the charred landscape. Some went to homes where they had received tips that someone might have died.

They used sticks to move aside debris and focused on vehicles, bathtubs and what was left of mattresses for possible signs of victims.

When no remains were found, they spray-painted a large, orange “0″ near the house and moved on.

Robert Panak, a volunteer on a team from Napa County, said he was trying to picture each house before it burned and imagine where people might have taken shelter.

“I just think about the positives, bringing relief to the families, closure,” Panak said.

The search area is huge and the fire burned many places to the ground, creating a landscape unique to many search-and- rescue personnel, said Joe Moses, a commander with the Monterey County Sheriff’s Office, who is helping oversee the effort.

“Here we’re looking for very small parts and pieces, and so we have to be very diligent and systematic,” he said Friday.

Sheriff Kory Honea said it was possible that the exact death toll from the blaze would never be known. He also questioned whether the search for remains could be completed by midweek when the rain is forecast.

“As much as I wish that we could get through all of this before the rains come, I don’t know if that’s possible,” he said.

About 1,000 names remain on a list of people unaccounted for more than a week after the fire began in Butte County about 140 miles (225 kilometers) north of San Francisco.

Authorities don’t believe all those on the list are missing and the number dropped by 300 on Sunday as more people were located or got in touch to say they weren’t missing.

On Sunday afternoon, more than 50 people gathered at a memorial for the victims at First Christian Church in Chico, where a banner on the altar read, “We will rise from the ashes.”

People hugged and shed tears as Pastor Jesse Kearns recited a prayer for firefighters, rescuers and search teams: “We ask for continued strength as they are growing weary right now,” Kearns said.

Paul Stavish, who retired three months ago from a Silicon Valley tech job and moved to Paradise, placed a battery-powered votive candle on the altar as a woman played piano and sang “Amazing Grace.”

Stavish, his wife and three dogs escaped the fire, but their house is gone. He said he was thinking of the dead and mourning for the warm, tight-knit community.

“This is not just a few houses getting burned,” he said. “The whole town is gone.”

___

Associated Press journalists Christopher Weber and Brian Melley in Los Angeles contributed to this report.

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