Obamacare

Pay attention to the time this was written. If you wander in here next month and want to debate me with yesterdays news, you will be mocked mercilessly.

I’d like to start by pointing out that most people’s argument that “kids with cancer” are going to get healthcare is simply wrong. Kids with cancer collect social security from a system they never paid into and are covered under Medicare/Medicade. Really the decision doesn’t affect the poor nor the elderly. If you happen to have a condition and you’ve been denied insurance for whatever reason you’re covered under the old system.

That being said this is a total loss for both parties – the bill that passed simply doesn’t look like the original one that was submitted, then it was never intended to be funded by taxes. The argument against socialism was always that the government isn’t funded it. Well, now they are. Not only are you required to buy insurance (something I avoided doing in college and saved quite a bit by doing so) but now insurance companies have carte blanche to charge you (via the government) whatever they want. They don’t even have to put effort into it because before, if you reneged on your copayment, you went to court with the insurance company. Now, if you renege on your healthcare tax you get to deal with the IRS.

I’m going to guess the CEOs are toasting themselves right now. Just think about that last sentence there for a minute – you used to be able to negotiate because they could put a lien on your property, but chances are you weren’t going to sell anyway because of the housing crunch. They would threaten to take your house or car, but those things don’t have value in this economy. What our stupid activist judges managed to pull off was a major coup for the health insurance industry – it’s effectively their bailout. They don’t have to chase down deadbeats now – the IRS does it for them.

Other misc arguments I’ve seen (thank you daily kos, but I won’t link to your blog):

“Insurance companies could deny you for anything!” – This is false. Obamacare in 2010 (about the only part of the bill I agree with) made rescission illegal (even after the 1997 act), but this effectively only prevented women with breast cancer from being subject to a drop in their health insurance, and only really changed the two year period mandated. The other group of individuals who claimed to be “victims” were people who became HIV positive in the same two year period. Out of the groups likely to contract HIV, the overwhelming majority are gay black males, followed by drug users. While being black or being gay might not prevent you from getting insurance, substance abuse will. Now, while medicare and medicade (which also pays for medical visits for the people on welfare) didn’t test for drugs, with healthcare an individual mandate, insurance companies can, and will. For some people that means they can’t enjoy their substances responsibly without Uncle Sam knowing and for some people that means they won’t be getting insurance anyway – but they’ll still pay for it.

“Make wall street pay for it!” – This one is grossly ignorant and really makes me want to stab people. The idea goes something like “If we put X tax on stock trade, it would make Y billion dollars”. These people don’t understand how the stock market works. What actually happens when we’re talking about the SIG Trading Platform is High Frequency Low Latency trading. The system sees a stock drop $1, it buys 1000 shares and when the stock blips back up $1 because everyone else sees it, it immediately sells the stock. It does this about 100 times a second. Any tax like this would destroy the stock market overnight.

“Small businesses get tax credits!” – All businesses already received tax credits. Businesses with less than 25 full time employees get the small business tax credit (50% reimbursement). Since this now comes out of your tax dollars, and everyone pays taxes, not only is there incentive to hire twice as many people for half the time but this also means people who do take a full time job will still have to pay 100% of the tax liability. People who only work 20 hours still pay 100% of the tax liability. Businesses who skip on your hours now to ruin your weekend now have that much more incentive to hire seasonal workers and rotate the workforce. Remember – business don’t pay taxes like people. They don’t get married, they don’t get child credits, they don’t need healthcare.

“This is a tax hike on the middle class!” – No it’s a tax hike across the middle and upper class. Because the original law was not tax funded, there’s no way to implement this as anything but a tax. Sorry folks, if they follow through with it, it comes out of your pocket. I know debt != taxes in America which is why people take us less and less seriously nowadays but the only possible way to have this be constitutional per the ruling is to impose it as a tax. The lowest income bracket – the people already on medicare and medicade and social security – still aren’t going to pay it. Now, interestingly enough, the supreme court ruling does actually pave the way for a really interesting legal maneuver: If the health insurance is paid for through the taxes, then the health insurance may actually end up under social security, which is where it should have been in the first place.

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