I would like to introduce a guest blogger, Amy Halperin. She has a lot of good thoughts about Congress, health care, the White House and we the American people. I hope she gets you thinking.
Before I start, I want to make a couple of things clear. I am a registered Democrat, but I have voted for Republicans when I thought they were better suited to the job at hand. I never vote the party, I vote the person, and I never vote until I have researched.
And yes, I voted for Obama, and I did so in part because I researched the Affordable Healthcare Act, what the rest of the world calls ‘ObamaCare’ BEFORE I voted for him and long before it was passed.
So it is with a somewhat heavy heart that I start this guest-blog by saying: Shame on you, Mr. President.
Shame on you for doing something so good for our people, with ‘Obamacare’ and waiting until just a few weeks before the Republicans planned to hold the country hostage before clearly, succinctly and so beautifully explaining it to the people you passed it for, so that it can be fully, finally understood. If you had explained what you have achieved 6 months ago, even the Tea Party weenies in Congress wouldn’t have a leg — or a misleading poll — to stand on.
Because I know what you did for me and my family. My older sister is diabetic, and it’s been a long time since she worked for a company that was large enough to provide healthcare. Under the Affordable Healthcare Act, for the first time in a decade, my sister has insurance. She didn’t get a new job to get the insurance. What she did get was a law that (a) forbade companies from refusing to cover her at all because she had the dreaded medical bug-a-boo, the Pre-Existing Condition, and (b) forbade the company that was willing to cover her from charging her over $1000 a month for the privilege for trying to stay healthy in the wealthiest country in the world. She now has healthcare, at a price she can afford and still eat.
For me, you’ve taken a load off my mind, because I have a fatal liver disease (not from drinking, thank you, I’ve probably had less than a 100 drinks total in the 27 years it’s been legal for me to drink), but because I have unlucky DNA. I didn’t do anything, I just have it, and it will kill me and painful, difficult and unpleasant death it will be, at that. So I have THAT to look forward to, but at least, thanks to you, Mr. President, I DON’T have to worry about my insurance company saying ‘oh, sorry, we’ve spent too much money on you’ and discontinuing my insurance because I’ve hit my Lifetime LImit of Coverage. So I may die a ridiculous death, but I won’t have to declare bankruptcy and move to a nursing home and sell everything own. There’s still a chance that my family will be able to get the few valuable things I’ve actually managed to get when I die, and not some bank or pawn broker someplace.
But, as the title says, there’s Shame Enough to Go Around.
Shame on you, my fellow Americans, for never having bothered to find out about what’s REALLY in the Obamacare law, and listening to the politicians for your information. The information has always been available, if you bothered to look. And if you’d bothered to look, you’d’ve found:
1) No more Pre-Existing Conditions
2) No more life-time coverage limit
3) No charging people in their 60’s 6 TIMES what they paid before their 50th birthday for the same care.
4) No more twenty-somethings never having insurance at all, until they realize they’re starting to get sick, at which point they are denied care (see #1 above) and then the rest of us have to pay their bills because there are already laws stating that hospitals cannot turn the sick away because they can’t pay (did you know that, America? Government is already IN healthcare, it’s just costing us more)
5) No more having to pay $600 premiums to keep your healthcare when you quit or get fired — when you HAVE NO INCOME. You can take your current healthcare with you, and the rates will STAY as reasonable as they were mandated to be.
Why do I know this and you don’t? Because I don’t listen to other people and believe every slanted viewpoint they give me. I look it up and learn it for myself and make up my own mind. Which I always thought was the point of being in America — thinking for yourself.
But there’s more shame to go around, still.
Shame on you, Republican right-wingers, Tea-Partiers, whatever you call yourselves. You fought the good fight on Obamacare and you lost it, fair and square. Repeatedly, you have been told that if you don’t like the plan, make a reasoned, intelligent counter-proposal and it will be considered. Maybe you don’t believe that’s true, but you never bothered to find out, did you? I have never heard ONE plan on healthcare from any of you, reasonable or otherwise. All I’ve heard is the rant of a six-year-old: “I lost this game and I don’t want to play anymore! I’m taking MY Ball and I’m going home and then NO ONE can play!”
Except guess what Mr. Republican/Tea Partier? It’s not YOUR ball! It’s MY ball. My ball and the rest of America’s and you don’t get to decide that we can’t play anymore, that we don’t get the government benefits and services that I’ve been paying for (along with your salary and your not-affected-by-any-of-the-changes-you’re-taking-away-from-my-family healthcare) with my payroll taxes. So shame on you for working AGAINST the people who put you there, and not FOR them.
I’m not done.
Shame on you, Majority Leader Boehner for ignoring the title and the responsibility that your own party gave you and actually LEADING. None of this happens if you say ‘enough. This isn’t the time and place for this. I don’t like Obamacare either, but it’s not our job to screw up the government, it’s our job to make it work.’
Shame on the Senate and the House, on both ‘sides’ of the political aisle for forgetting that we, the People, didn’t put you in Washington to not work, and we certainly didn’t put you there so you can delay laws upheld by the Supreme Court, threaten to shut the government down in 50 hours — AND THEN TAKE THE DAY OFF.
I don’t care if it’s Sunday, a ‘day of rest’ — y’all broke this thing — FIX IT.
Shame on all of you. Put your big boy and big girl pants on and do the job we put you there for.
Or rest assured, we’ll find someone else who will.
Congress pass the Affordable Care Act and do not shut our government down.