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CenSin

Obamacare: Who Stands to Win or Lose?

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So Obamacare is going to take effect soon, and the slew of news articles on it coming out right now is a sort of reminder of a looming deadline. Here's one that purports to separate the facts and myths of Obamacare: http://news.yahoo.com/obamacare-myths-174726212--politics.html

 

The real question is, who stands to win or lose? On the surface, it looks like people are positioning themselves based on ideology and not whether they benefit from the changes. Based on the summary of Obamacare on Wikipedia, it looks like Obamacare will screw over the most health-concious people to pay for those who are not. And I make my claim based on the following:

  • Healthy people who try to stay healthy and succeed are much less likely to require the services of a doctor besides annual physicals. In fact, I have not been to a doctor or dentist for years and haven't been sick for just as long. Assuming they pay the bare minimum for their own health, Obamacare would force them to spend more on health care than they actually need in order to subsidize:
  • Unhealthy people who make no effort to stay healthy are much more likely to require frequent visits to a doctor or specialized medical professional. Assuming most of these people are also poor, they are a huge drain on the resources of those who do not require expensive medical care.
  • As for those who have medical conditions not caused by poor lifestyle choices, they make up a much smaller population. I'm not saying that they are a burden that should be left to fend for themselves.

As selfish as it may sound, I would not like to pay for someone else's health care. They could start paying for themselves by buying one less Happy Meal a day.

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I know some companies are considering taking the penalty for the first year and are not hiring until they see how things play out.  There is a lot of talk about this program being rolled back in order to allow folks to adjust, but a lot of people are saying that they're going to take the penalty.  If they couldn't afford healthcare before, why would they suddenly be able to afford it now?  <_<

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I've heard former governor Patterson talk a number of times recently about how after doing all the math and looking over all the changes, essentially no one will gain anything from Obamacare. THere will be large shifts of where money goes within the healthcare and insurance industry, but basically there will be no real net positive (or negative) after all this hoopla. 

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I've heard former governor Patterson talk a number of times recently about how after doing all the math and looking over all the changes, essentially no one will gain anything from Obamacare. THere will be large shifts of where money goes within the healthcare and insurance industry, but basically there will be no real net positive (or negative) after all this hoopla. 

Well there will be losers, and those who have insurance will be paying more for those who didn't previously.

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That's not true.

 

QM1 is right: this about as centrist and noncontroversial a plan as you can get, more of a gift to insurance companies than anything. Makes sense considering it's Mitt Romney's plan at its core.

 

 

As selfish as it may sound, I would not like to pay for someone else's health care. They could start paying for themselves by buying one less Happy Meal a day.

 
f**k that elitist snark at the end. Really, you're making fun of people in such poverty that they can neither afford health care nor anything other than fast food (extremely cheap)? That's impressive, man.
Edited by MHV9218
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I'll assume that some here are naive to the dynamics behind why many of the poor may be unhealthy so I start with the happy meal point being thrown around in an elitist-minded tone, in the OP which I do not appreciate. Persons who are poor first of all currently are not privy to quality healthcare in it's current state. Will touch upon that in a moment.

 

Persons who are poor do not have the luxuries of buying healthy food due to the reason that it is more expensive. Persons who are of the working class even are not offered quality healthcare by their abusive employers who will pay them at minimum wage *if* even that. They have to work long hours at low wages to make ends meet which takes away from them having recreational extracurricular time for the mind, body and soul. That puts strain on the human body physiologically and physiologically resulting in sickness.

 

Now I would say that Obama is just another president, NOT getting into a political party debate, could care less about that aspect of it, and therefore will stay neutral on that.

 

But what I will touch upon as one upside of the healthcare reform plan as this: It will mandate employers straight across the board in the US workforce regardless of industry sector to assist employees with suffice contribution towards medical coverage for their employees. This pending reform also protects employees if they switch jobs. They will will not have to worry about jeopardizing their existing coverage. However many smaller businesses will be exempt from that mandate.

 

Also it leaves the poor working class with options to select from private insurance providers in turn which will open the door for better subsidized healthcare options. As it is now these options is sorely lacking.

 

Now I disagree with the notion that the middle class will have to pay more for quality health insurance. Why? The plan can protect private insurers from the monstrous medical expenses which is the reasons for of high medical expenses in recent years. How does it work? This proposal would assist private insurers by reimbursement of the costs that come about, if they agree to reduce the cost of premiums. Which in turn will indeed benefit the middle class as well.

Edited by realizm

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I'll assume that some here are naive to the dynamics behind why many of the poor may be unhealthy so I start with the happy meal point being thrown around in an elitist-minded tone, in the OP which I do not appreciate. Persons who are poor first of all currently are not privy to quality healthcare in it's current state. Will touch upon that in a moment.

 

Persons who are poor do not have the luxuries of buying healthy food due to the reason that it is more expensive. Persons who are of the working class even are not offered quality healthcare by their abusive employers who will pay them at minimum wage *if* even that. They have to work long hours at low wages to make ends meet which takes away from them having recreational extracurricular time for the mind, body and soul. That puts strain on the human body physiologically and physiologically resulting in sickness. 

The fact of the matter is the excuse that poor people eat poorly solely because of money issues is just that, an excuse.  How do you explain the obesity rates for those who aren't poor?  I would also argue that if someone really wanted to eat well, they could.  I recently did a little experiment.  I went to Whole Foods with cash and purposely left my cards at home just to see what I would do because I have a habit of going in there with a "plan" and then overspending on "treats" that are really wants.  I needed to attempt to get food for Sunday through at least Wednesday, so 4 days total.  I came out with exactly what I needed and may I add was able to make several salads as well (plenty of spinach, tomatoes, carrots, nuts and the like) with a protein on the side.  I limited snacks to veggie chips and cookies that are high in unsaturated fats and low in carbs.  For drinks, I drink water (either natural bottled water or natural sparkling water), which is much healthier and costs the same or less as the processed soda that these folks love to drink with tons of chemicals, hhigh fructose corn syrup and other processed garbage.  

 

It comes down to choices and time.  It isn't easy to eat healthy but I make the extra time to ensure that I eat right.  A lot of people don't and that's the problem and not necessarily money.

 

 

But what I will touch upon as one upside of the healthcare reform plan as this: It will mandate employers straight across the board in the US workforce regardless of industry sector to assist employees with suffice contribution towards medical coverage for their employees. This pending reform also protects employees if they switch jobs. They will will not have to worry about jeopardizing their existing coverage. However many smaller businesses will be exempt from that mandate.

 

Also it leaves the poor working class with options to select from private insurance providers in turn which will open the door for better subsidized healthcare options. As it is now these options is sorely lacking.

 

Now I disagree with the notion that the middle class will have to pay more for quality health insurance. Why? The plan can protect private insurers from the monstrous medical expenses which is the reasons for of high medical expenses in recent years. How does it work? This proposal would assist private insurers by reimbursement of the costs that come about, if they agree to reduce the cost of premiums. Which in turn will indeed benefit the middle class as well.

 

Middle class folks are going to get screwed over because a lot of the providers are pulling out of the Obamacare program and quite frankly I don't blame them.  There is simply too much risk involved and if I were in the industry, I would not want "gubment" standing over me telling me how to run my business when I can do much better on the open market.

Edited by Via Garibaldi 8
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The fact of the matter is the excuse that poor people eat poorly solely because of money issues is just that, an excuse.  How do you explain the obesity rates for those who aren't poor?

 

It comes down to choices and time.  It isn't easy to eat healthy but I make the extra time to ensure that I eat right.  A lot of people don't and that's the problem and not necessarily money.

 

No it isn't. And which obesity rates, the ones that are lower? Okay.

 

It comes down to money. Eating healthily and organically is unfortunately a privilege for the upper class in much of America and for the middle class and upper class in cities.

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No it isn't. And which obesity rates, the ones that are lower? Okay.

 

It comes down to money. Eating healthily and organically is unfortunately a privilege for the upper class in much of America and for the middle class and upper class in cities.

I wouldn't call it a "privilege".  More like common sense.  If someone just bought food that they needed, they could certainly get a healthy meal.  Soda is NOT a necessity, or any of the other junk food like potato chips and so on.  I could walk into Whole Foods and buy a sizable meal for say $5.00 and be perfectly content. I'm sure a meal at McDonald's would be about that price or more.

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I don't make my claims because I have a Trump-sized budget to spend on healthy food. I keep my food budget tight and I've spent 4 years abstaining from junk and working healthy routines into my schedule. Neither comes at a cost:

  1. Money spent on healthier foods means less money spent on being sick, which is not to say that healthier foods are necessarily more expensive since "organic" and "non-GMO" aren't my concerns.
  2. I get off at stations before my stop and get home by foot the rest of the way.

Let's illustrate.

 

I just went food shopping today at Pathmark. Look at this and tell me if it's unachievable for someone else with similar budget constraints:

  • Simply Orange/Tangerine Juice (Half Gallon) for $2.25.
  • Newman's Own Marinara Sauce × 2 for $4.96
  • Ronzoni Tri-color Rotini (12 Ounce) × 2 for $2.98

This $10.19 worth of food will last me about 2 or 3 days (which is greatly simplified given that I don't eat the same food for all 3 meals for consecutive days, but it illustrates the point). $30 a week will keep me well-fed. Fast food—even cheap fast food—will have trouble keeping a person full throughout the week for $30.

 

 

I take the (B) or (D) home from Manhattan. If I catch the (D), I take it to Coney Island. If I catch the (B), I take it to Brighton Beach and run to Coney Island. Half the time, I make it to Coney Island before the (Q) following the (B) gets there which means exercise cost me a negligible investment in time.

 

 

When I play by the same rules and constraints, I don't think that's elitism. I would say I simply work smarter with the choices I have.

Really, you're making fun of people in such poverty that they can neither afford health care nor anything other than fast food (extremely cheap)? That's impressive, man.

If they had a choice in the matter? Yes. I would make fun of them. Having made regrettable decisions in life on impulse, I'm acutely aware that a bit of ingenuity and self-control goes a long way. And no effort ≈ no reward.

Edited by CenSin

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You have pasta and tomato sauce for breakfast lunch and dinner for three days straight? That was my only takeaway from that.

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You have pasta and tomato sauce for breakfast lunch and dinner for three days straight? That was my only takeaway from that.

if you go to the Whole Foods, you can make your own salad which goes by weight.  I can get a nice sized salad for $5.00, with veggies and protein (chicken breast) or tuna or what have you, which would surely be about what a burger and fries would cost at McDonald's.  

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You have pasta and tomato sauce for breakfast lunch and dinner for three days straight? That was my only takeaway from that.

You don't read carefully. That's my takeaway.

 

This $10.19 worth of food will last me about 2 or 3 days (which is greatly simplified given that I don't eat the same food for all 3 meals for consecutive days, but it illustrates the point).

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These are more of the things that I buy. I have the most recent receipts in front of me so I know what the prices are. (Yes. I keep a budget and manage my money well!)

 

From Chinese grocery stores in Chinatown (which are even cheaper than any other supermarkets New Yorkers usually buy from):

  • Bananas: $0.55 a pound
  • Lemons: 5 for $2
  • Apples: 3 for $2
  • Oranges: $5 for a large sack of them
  • Various other fruits/vegetables: most less than $5 per pound or bundle

Whole Foods:

  • Red Quinoa: less than $9 per pound (This stuff is a complete protein source with plenty of vitamins, minerals, and fiber)
  • Wild Alaskan Salmon (7 Servings in Cans): $3.50

Pathmark:

  • Prego pasta sauces: I saw them on sale for $1.99 just an hour ago
  • Various freshly baked breads: about $4 for a bundle or loaf (expires in a few days, so you cannot stockpile these)
  • New Brunswick canned sardines: $1.39 each (or even cheaper online if you buy bulk cases)

All of these are obviously nutritiously superior to anything you can get from a fast food joint, and you don't have to interpret this rigidly (as MHV9218 did) or buy only from this list or eat only these things for consecutive days. Plenty more choices are available from other places.

 

And none of these things are stuff that only my "elite self" can have that a "poor peasant" can't! There goes the argument about affordability of healthy food.

Edited by CenSin
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less than $9 per pound 

 

For $9, one could get four cheeseburgers, four apple pies, a small drink and a small order of fries and the rest goes to tax.

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For $9, one could get four cheeseburgers, four apple pies, a small drink and a small order of fries and the rest goes to tax.

We get it.  You get a lot for your money at McDonald's but the question is what is the nutritional value?  Hamburger buns and patties that apparently NEVER spoil, so what exactly is in these "hamburgers" and "buns"?  They're able to offer it cheap by using loads of cheap chemicals and buying in bulk. Remember that the less manual labor that is involved and the more cheap chemicals used, the cheaper the overall "food" product is and I put food in quotes because humans were not made to be eating "food" with tons of chemicals in it because it's harder for the body to process and break down. \

 

Same thing with the soda that they sell.  They buy it in bulk, and use the cheapest chemicals possible to compose the drink.  So yeah, you'll be full, but you'll also probably be obese or have health complications.  They buy cheap oil, and potatoes are relatively cheap as well.  These items are not meant to be for daily consumption but rather as a sometime thing, and I wouldn't even eat them then, when I have no idea what I'm eating from a food standpoint.  If you can't pronounce the ingredients in the so called food that you're eating, then 9 times out of 10 you probably shouldn't be eating it.

Edited by Via Garibaldi 8
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For $9, one could get four cheeseburgers, four apple pies, a small drink and a small order of fries and the rest goes to tax.

Actually, the dollar menu doesn't include tax, so $9 would get you just about $8 worth on the dollar menu. I doubt that amount of food would sustain you for more than a few days though.

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Actually, the dollar menu doesn't include tax, so $9 would get you just about $8 worth on the dollar menu. I doubt that amount of food would sustain you for more than a few days though.

Well let's remember how long those "hamburgers" lasted with the "buns" that didn't have mold on them after months.  That's enough right there to skeeve me out.  I guess he could spread the hamburgers out and have one a day since they apparently don't go bad. :lol:

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Much thanks gentlemen for the math refresher. I think many people on this board knows how to budget and play with money well as a middle class citizen.

 

We can talk about Micky Ds in the fast food wage strike if anyone cares to gravedigg that discussion thread because that is besides the point in this thread. I thought we were talking about healthcare policies in America. Anyway, not all people who are poor buy fast food, in fact they never really do because they cannot afford it. They have to count pennies and catch sales to get the food they need and literally stretch it out.

 

In some families it is so hard (after paying exorbitant rent costs  to slumlords for rat infested holes in the wall in crime infested ghettos and provide for schooling of their children, utility and cellphone bills and so forth) and after working long hours for a few dollars and cents, they have very little amount left for food. Also they cannot afford premium healthcare, the employers they work for who pays minimum wage in many cases are small businesses that will not provide healthcare options. Many times that forces parents to pay per visit, whether on a sliding scale or not as medicaid qualification requirements are strict, you might as well be homeless or in an AIDS awareness program as HIV positive or be considered disabled to be eligible for it. I didn't make the rules. That's they way it is under current regulations.

 

Again aside from poor healthcare, the stress of being poor affects the human mind and body. It has been medically proven. This again is why we see that many of the poor are suffering from ailments and even malnutrition. Look at what is happening in the Midwest right here at home, not even to mention around the world in so called third world countries.

 

For what it's worth Obama's reform plan will nullify all of that a point made in my previous point as apparently some ignored.


I'm not for debunking the issue in this thread. I would like to stick to the point of the OP.

 

* This post has been edited for clarity.

Edited by realizm

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Much thanks gentlemen for the math refresher. I think many people on this board knows how to budget and play with money well as a middle class citizen.

 

We can talk about Micky Ds in the fast food wage strike if anyone cares to gravedigg that discussion thread because that is besides the point in this thread. I thought we were talking about healthcare policies in America. Anyway, all people who are poor DO NOT buy fast food, in fact they never really do because they cannot afford it. They have to count pennies and catch sales to get the food they need and literally stretch it out.

 

In some families it is so hard (after paying exorbitant rent costs  to slumlords for rat infested holes in the wall in crime infested ghettos and provide for schooling of their children, utility and cellphone bills and so forth) and after working long hours for a few dollars and cents, they have very little amount left for food. Also they cannot afford premium healthcare, the employers they work for who pays minimum wage in many cases are small businesses that will not provide healthcare options. Many times that forces parents to pay per visit, whether on a sliding scale or not as medicaid qualification requirements are strict, you might as well be homeless to be eligible for it. 

 

Again aside from poor healthcare, the stress of being poor affects the human mind and body. if has been medically proven. This again is why we see that many of the poor are suffering from ailments and even malnutrition. Look at what is happening in the Midwest right here at home, not even to mention around the world in so called third world countries.

 

For what it's worth Obama's reform plan will nullify all of that a point made in my previous point as apparently some ignored.

 

I'm not for debunking the issue in this thread. I would like to stick toi the point of the OP.

There is no way that you can discuss Obamacare without talking about what we've been discussing, because it's a big reason why this program is not looking good right now.  You cannot expect insurance companies to sit back and take substantial loses trying to cover a large amount of people who are irresponsible with their health, and the excuse that they "have" to eat at fast food restaurants to make ends meet is ridiculous.  If you buy your food at the supermarket (the bare basics) and prepare your meals yourself, if you know how to shop as CenSin and I illustrated, you can make a nutritious meal at home rather than eating the processed fast-food garbage.

 

The more that we excuse these individuals for their poor health and eating habits, the more healthcare costs will continue to skyrocket as more and more people will have illnesses that require more care and money.

Edited by Via Garibaldi 8

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There is no way that you can discuss Obamacare without talking about what we've been discussing, because it's a big reason why this program is not looking good right now.  You cannot expect insurance companies to sit back and take substantial loses trying to cover a large amount of people who are irresponsible with their health, and the excuse that they "have" to eat at fast food restaurants to make ends meet is ridiculous.  If you buy your food at the supermarket (the bare basics) and prepare your meals yourself, if you know how to shop as CenSin and I illustrated, you can make a nutritious meal at home rather than eating the processed fast-food garbage.

 

The more that we excuse these individuals for their poor health and eating habits, the more healthcare costs will continue to skyrocket as more and more people will have illnesses that require more care and money.

But the insurance companies will not take financial losses. Under the proposal if they agree to provide lower costs to say employers for coverage the federal government in turn will reimburse the insurance companies. Which means that the middle class will not have to worry with higher premiums either.

 

And it seems you are not clear on the dynamics of the poverty model. Should I rehash statistics from the last discussion?

Edited by realizm

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Much thanks gentlemen for the math refresher. I think many people on this board knows how to budget and play with money well as a middle class citizen.

 

We can talk about Micky Ds in the fast food wage strike if anyone cares to gravedigg that discussion thread because that is besides the point in this thread. I thought we were talking about healthcare policies in America. Anyway, not all people who are poor buy fast food, in fact they never really do because they cannot afford it. They have to count pennies and catch sales to get the food they need and literally stretch it out.

 

In some families it is so hard (after paying exorbitant rent costs to slumlords for rat infested holes in the wall in crime infested ghettos and provide for schooling of their children, utility and cellphone bills and so forth) and after working long hours for a few dollars and cents, they have very little amount left for food. Also they cannot afford premium healthcare, the employers they work for who pays minimum wage in many cases are small businesses that will not provide healthcare options. Many times that forces parents to pay per visit, whether on a sliding scale or not as medicaid qualification requirements are strict, you might as well be homeless or in an AIDS awareness program as HIV positive or be considered disabled to be eligible for it. I didn't make the rules. That's they way it is under current regulations.

 

Again aside from poor healthcare, the stress of being poor affects the human mind and body. It has been medically proven. This again is why we see that many of the poor are suffering from ailments and even malnutrition. Look at what is happening in the Midwest right here at home, not even to mention around the world in so called third world countries.

 

For what it's worth Obama's reform plan will nullify all of that a point made in my previous point as apparently some ignored.

 

I'm not for debunking the issue in this thread. I would like to stick to the point of the OP.

 

* This post has been edited for clarity.

There is no way that you can discuss Obamacare without talking about what we've been discussing, because it's a big reason why this program is not looking good right now. You cannot expect insurance companies to sit back and take substantial loses trying to cover a large amount of people who are irresponsible with their health, and the excuse that they "have" to eat at fast food restaurants to make ends meet is ridiculous. If you buy your food at the supermarket (the bare basics) and prepare your meals yourself, if you know how to shop as CenSin and I illustrated, you can make a nutritious meal at home rather than eating the processed fast-food garbage.

 

The more that we excuse these individuals for their poor health and eating habits, the more healthcare costs will continue to skyrocket as more and more people will have illnesses that require more care and money.

Forgive me for going off topic, but methinks that taking care of health costs is much more expensive after the fact than before. When I worked in a community health center (where many underprivileged patients get their care), we took in government grants to run workshops promoting preventive measure for all health maladies like STDs, malnutrition, and obesity. This was many years ago, but I'm still sure that somewhere in their documents (grant applications? research?) they found data to suggest that preventive health measures save a lot of money in the long run. Perhaps I should pay them a visit to see what they know now.

 

So, for poor people who are barely able to live from paycheck to paycheck (and I do have friends like that), who can't even afford McDonald's, I don't think the solution is to simply increase the money dumped on their health for the inevitable consequences of their lifestyle. The government could do better by nailing the roots of the problems. What are these roots? I do not have the expertise to say what these are and what the government policies should be.

 

For the poor who have enough to shell out money for fast food on a regular basis, I would not like to shoulder responsibility for their choices.

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Forgive me for going off topic, but methinks that taking care of health costs is much more expensive after the fact than before. When I worked in a community health center (where many underprivileged patients get their care), we took in government grants to run workshops promoting preventive measure for all health maladies like STDs, malnutrition, and obesity. This was many years ago, but I'm still sure that somewhere in their documents (grant applications? research?) they found data to suggest that preventive health measures save a lot of money in the long run. Perhaps I should pay them a visit to see what they know now.

 

So, for poor people who are barely able to live from paycheck to paycheck (and I do have friends like that), who can't even afford McDonald's, I don't think the solution is to simply increase the money dumped on their health for the inevitable consequences of their lifestyle. The government could do better by nailing the roots of the problems. What are these roots? I do not have the expertise to say what these are and what the government policies should be.

 

For the poor who have enough to shell out money for fast food on a regular basis, I would not like to shoulder responsibility for their choices.

 

No question the costs of healthcare is out the roof, again due to one of the problems stemming from the liability costs from malpractice suit after malpractice suit plus the main point being that the baby boomer generation is at the stage where they are of senior citizen age. Thats the main reason. Not the latter. How can that be when medicaid as it is through HRA and other social services agencies by state makes it almost impossible for poor working families which cannot receive coverage from small business employers the care that they need. be aware that there is a base income level of approx 500 dollars to 1000 dollars monthly to qualify (how do they pay the rent then?), be disabled and on SSI (a trap), or be HIV positive and dying to qualify?

 

As for your constant highlighting of the suggestions that all poor people eat fast food, Doesn't those of the middle class do the same? I'm surprised (maybe not) that was completely missed in this discussion.

Edited by realizm

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But the insurance companies will not take financial losses. Under the proposal if they agree to provide lower costs to say employers for coverage the federal government in turn will reimburse the insurance companies. Which means that the middle class will not have to worry with higher premiums either.

 

And it seems you are not clear on the dynamics of the poverty model. Should I rehash statistics from the last discussion?

Well if that's the case then explain why many of them are refusing to take part in the Obamacare program??  Also, the idea of the government "reimbursing" insurance companies for loses is a terrible idea.  That money comes from taxpayers and it is quite expensive to have the government doing this.  We don't have the money for this and monies will have to come from somewhere to pay for it and I would imagine that tax hikes would be the only way.  It's a bold plan to get Americans insured, but healthcare costs continue to skyrocket in particular because too many Americans are obese, leading to chronic care and unnecessary costs.

 

Also, you will see as more Americans become obese, fewer of them will be able to work steadily or be productive because of their obese illnesses, which will mean less taxpayer dollars coming in.  You have to impose initiatives to get people to eat better and not just say well we're covering everyone without tackling the root of the problem.  Why is it for example that these people are convinced that they're better off going to a McDonald's to eat rather than going to a supermarket?  I'm not just talking about from a cost point of view but a health point of view as well.

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