Preach it

Commenter Emerald:

HaHaHaHa! I’ve been without coverage for nearly 13 years. (Took care of my Dad for 10 of those).

I qualify for the “Enhanced Silver” plan in California. Cheapest for me would be $3 per month for an HMO. Most expensive would be $159 for the Anthem Blue Cross HMO.

But unless my doctor is in that $3 plan (he might be–he takes more insurance than most), I’ll be deciding between the $94 Anthem EMO or Blue Cross PPO at $122.

Without the subsidies these all would be from $679 to well over $700 per month.

And I’m turning 63 in Dec and have been diagnosed with gallstones.

Commenter MomSense:

Just went to ObamaCare and filled in the information and I am going to get insurance much cheaper. Was paying 1,600 a month for years because I have a pre-existing condition and then because of some life changes I couldn’t afford it anymore so have been waiting and praying to be healthy until I could sign up. Starts at $243 a month so now I am going to decide on the plan! I can manage this!!!

Commenter BotSplainer:

I looked at Kentucky’s exchange. I can insure 4 of us (eldest daughter living away undoubtedly qualifies for enough subsidy to bring her a separate policy under $100) for somewhere between $850 and $950. Even if I get no tax credit at all,…. we’ll get a plan that has a $1500 deductible for the same price as our current tub of shit with a $15000 deductible.

This kind of plan has never been available to me at rates like this. Also, it ensures that my youngest daughter is insurable (she would never pass underwriting on the individual market – a biopsy…

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86 replies
  1. 1

    Thanks for highlighting these comments. It’s so important to look past the childishness of the Republicans (“I don’t care what John thinks!”).

    The reason we care about the government is because it implelents policies that affect people’s lives. This policy will greatly improve many, many people’s lives– and, given the experience of the rest of the world & the projections of the CBO, lower the debt to boot. Overall, a good day.

  2. 2
    Botsplainer says:

    I looked at Kentucky’s exchange. I can insure 4 of us (eldest daughter living away undoubtedly qualifies for enough subsidy to bring her a separate policy under $100) for somewhere between $850 and $950. Even if I get no tax credit at all, between my SE half deduction and being able to ditch my youngest daughter’s mandatory $200/mo college healthcare premium because our policy didn’t meet university standard, we’ll get a plan that has a $1500 deductible for the same price as our current tub of shit with a $15000 deductible.

    This kind of plan has never been available to me at rates like this. Also, it ensures that my youngest daughter is insurable (she would never pass underwriting on the individual market – a biopsy on a birthmark we’ve had removed revealed precancerous cells when she was 15). One glibertarian friend said that she should just get employed by some big company or, if she really wanted to work on her own, that he’s sure that “some trade group” in her field would have group coverage available.

  3. 3
    MomSense says:

    Thanks, Richard. I really am feeling in a bit of a daze. Have to stay healthy until January but I am so relieved to know that I can do this. I don’t have to use medication all the time but when I do have to purchase it, it costs over $700. Sometimes I can find coupons and get it for $600-$625 but anyway that is still a lot for a mom trying to raise 3 boys on one income.

  4. 4
    c u n d gulag says:

    And this, a privatized national health program, is where the Teabagging “Morans” in the House, decided to fall on their swords.
    Never mind douche-canoes – they are now DOUCHE-AIRCRAFT CARRIERS!

    Please proceed, GOP. Please… Please, proceed…

  5. 5
    Marmot says:

    Nice! You’ve made my morning! :)

  6. 6
    Baud says:

    @Botsplainer:

    Kentucky should thank its lucky stars they have a Dem governor. From what I hear, they have one of the best exchanges out of the gate.

  7. 7

    @Baud:
    Note to anyone in Kentucky: If you are getting Expanded Medicaid, Kentucky has four Medicaid plans. Passport is so much better than the others that doctors have been legally forbidden from recommending it and Medicaid is not allowed to put it on your initial choices, since it has 80% of KY Medicaid enrollees already.

  8. 8
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @c u n d gulag:

    And this, a privatized national health program, is where the Teabagging “Morans” in the House, decided to fall on their swords.

    I really love the irony of this. ObamACAre opens for business just as much of the rest of the government is shutting down — and it’s shutting down because the Rethugs didn’t want ObamACAre to open for business.

    Morans indeed.

  9. 9
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: And big happy hugs to everyone who has already found the good news on their own insurance plans. That’s an awesome collection of anecdotes already, and just from one little ol’ blog community, on the first morning. This really is a Big Fucking Deal.

  10. 10
    James Hare says:

    My congresscritter’s VM says all his offices are closed. Nice how our representatives can shit the bed and then close all their offices so the public can’t even give them the talking-to they deserve.

  11. 11
    Botsplainer says:

    @Baud:

    Kentucky should thank its lucky stars they have a Dem governor. From what I hear, they have one of the best exchanges out of the gate.

    Steve Beshear is awesome. He’s thoughtful, doesn’t do drama, and is not so much a conservadem as he is a cautious policymaker who thinks things through to conclusions. He had a shitty environment to work in 1st term due to having an opposition led by movement assholes, but co-opted his chief asshole by naming him to a judgeship after the asshole’s wife bolted due to commands from her daddy (who lost millions bankrolling the asshole’s failed gubernatorial run). The current GOP leadership in the General Assembly is far more reasonable (the GOP Senate President and GOP House Minority Leader are people I consider friends) and appears to want to get back to pork barrel compromises instead of ideological wars.

    Steve was a no-nonsense sharp lawyer and is a great administrator who could do great things nationally if it weren’t for that godforsaken redneck drawl of his. But for Kentucky, we couldn’t ask for better.

  12. 12
    aimai says:

    I am actually, no exaggeration, crying as I read this. Tears are rolling down my cheeks. We have had healthcare for years through my husband’s work and I don’t think we are going to lose it any time soon (spits ritually three times) but that doesn’t make this testimony any the less powerful for me to read. I know that at any time, and as time flows in only one direction at a terrible time, my husband and I could lose coverage. WE are in MA so for the last seven years I’ve expected that we could go on the exchanges and not have to go naked. Now the rest of you have the peace of mind that we have had. Momsense–I’ve always loved your comments. I am so happy for you that some of the crushing anxiety of your situation is going to be relieved. Congratulations to you and all the others and many, many, thanks to President Obama and Nancy Pelosi for fighting it through.

  13. 13
    beth says:

    I’ve said all along that every American should have been getting some information in the mail or in their e-mail every 6 months or so touting Obamacare for the last three years. Now that the exchanges are up and running, the administration needs to find a way to get stories like these in front of the American people. Congratulations to all who will finally know the peace of having decent health care to rely on.

  14. 14
    Redshift says:

    Thanks for the good news on this dark day. It literally brings tears to my eyes.

    If I hadn’t gotten a job two months ago this would have been a godsend for me, too. (And will be if I’m unemployed again before retirement.) I didn’t get coverage right away from work, but I have one more month of paying an insane $1700+ for COBRA. It’s infuriating that they’re really obviously making a hefty profit off of my family while I was unemployed and all I got out of it was insurance against catastrophe. Never again!

  15. 15
    RP says:

    The more stories like this get circulated, the greater the pressure on the GOP.

  16. 16
    Xboxershorts says:

    I’ll throw my experience with purchasing private insurance…this time COBRA…

    I was let go in a downsizing in December 2011 …they subsidized Cobra for 3 months where my costs were about 400/mo to maintain that coverage. Following that, my cost for COBRA, with my wife a thyroid cancer survivor, was almost 2000/mo.

    That’s just insane.

  17. 17
    Emma says:

    @MomSense: Wow. Just Wow. I have a gold-plated plan from my company (University with medical school attached) but it is soooo amazingly satisfying to know that people will have insurance. You will be able to take your kids to the doctor without worrying. You will get your meds. I can’t even imagine how much of a relief that will be for you.

  18. 18
    mistermix says:

    I went to look up the rates in New York and the marketplace is down because of too much volume. That’s a good sign in my book.

  19. 19
    Ash Can says:

    This is a damned fine post and thread on an otherwise unsettling morning. The irony of the House Republicans shutting down the government over Obamacare at the precise instant the exchanges go into effect — with people crashing the servers in their rush to sign up — is not lost on me.

  20. 20
    Debbie(aussie) says:

    Am so glad for all of you! Next step, single payer.
    Just for you info; we pay just under $300/month for private insurance that gives us our choice of Dr/specialist, no or less waiting with no out of pocket for hospital, Drs can vary, as well as coverage for things Medicare doesn’t cover(extras) physio, dental, optometry etc.

  21. 21
    Marc says:

    Awesome. Awesomeawesomeawesome. Congratulations to everyone who can get more affordable health care. Thanks for sharing your stories.

  22. 22
    Ash Can says:

    And PS, I heartily second aimai:

    We have had healthcare for years through my husband’s work and I don’t think we are going to lose it any time soon (spits ritually three times) but that doesn’t make this testimony any the less powerful for me to read. I know that at any time, and as time flows in only one direction at a terrible time, my husband and I could lose coverage.

    AMEN. We’re sitting pretty too, with M-80’s insurance, but no one can foresee the future. We folks who already have both decent insurance at the present and the ability to recognize the fact that sometimes, in life, shit does happen, also are benefiting from the peace of mind the newly-opened exchanges are providing this morning.

  23. 23
    Nicole says:

    Hooray! These are great stories to read. Bit by bit, healthcare is being unshackled from work, which is such a step forward for individual freedom.

  24. 24
    GHayduke (formerly lojasmo) says:

    I was just thinking about the push back of the employer mandate. This will likely actually EXPAND the number of people on government programs, which to me seems like a good thing.

    Eleventy dimensional chess. Meep meep, mothafuckers.

  25. 25
    geg6 says:

    Just got into a FB fight with an old HS classmate who says she’s “neither Dem or Rep, but in this instance Rep, I guess”. Oh, fix the dreaded Obamacare! I said yeah, I agree it needs fixed to make it single payer and take the insurance companies out of it altogether but until that happens, millions of Americans without insurance or affordable insurance are going to be able to get affordable insurance and the peace of mind that will come from knowing a broken leg won’t cause them to file for bankruptcy. And then I asked her what any of this has to do with shutting down the government anyway. Is preventing the poor and middle class from having health and financial security worth shutting down the government?

    She hasn’t answered any of that, though. I never liked that bitch anyway.

  26. 26
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @Ash Can: Yup. Not really sure what they expect to accomplish after people have a taste of the exchanges.

    BTW, I really want to thank Richard for his posts. I’ve relieved some minds, and gotten some people pissed at their employers, by keeping them handy on my tablet. (In one case, we’re pretty sure the employer’s behavior is a convergence of believing lies about the ACA and being angry at minorities for stealing the presidential election.) It’s been fun.

  27. 27
    mai naem says:

    i’ve been trying to get on the damn exchange website on and off since last night. I’ve gotten to different stages but never get to the end. I know about tech glitches etc. and I can accept that but you damn well know the teabaggers are going to go on about how the government can’t even do the enrollment correctly waahhhh!!! I am surprised the Obama people didn’t prepare the servers for being hit hard.
    Anyhow, I finally gave up doing it through the exchange and went to the different insurance co. sites which weren’t slammed. Now, I don’t know if this is accurate – I’m figuring it is(it mentioned the exchange starting 1/1/14) but Cigna and Meritus had much better coverage than I have now at between $200-$250 without subsidies. Aetna and Healthnet don’t have the rates on their 2014 plans on their websites yet. ANyway, that’s a suggestion for people who are having a problem getting the exhange rate info. If you know the insurance cos. participating in your state. go to the company website.

  28. 28
    Ruckus says:

    @beth:

    I made a somewhat snide comment yesterday about getting several emails a day from OFA asking about money. I don’t recall one from them about ACA. Maybe they figure I have or know where to get the info. But it would have been nice to see just one long email explaining the signature law of the reason they exist. Just one. All that power, all those emails and they can only ask for money.

  29. 29
    Dave C says:

    I’m not shopping for insurance as I already have it, but California’s healthcare exchange website appears to be up and running just fine!

  30. 30
    Santa Fe says:

    Well, healthcare.gov isn’t being responsive at the moment, but I’m looking forward to enrolling myself and the rest of my family of four today after 10 years with no health insurance, thanks to being self-employed with a pre-existing condition. Now as long as my broken tooth holds out until Jan. 1, and the President and Democrats hold strong, things are definitely looking up!

  31. 31
    Ruckus says:

    And yes I give thanks that we hired Obama, twice. If he does nothing else(and he actually has done a lot else!) this would be well worth it. Would Hillary have done this? So all of you getting insurance for a for closer to a reasonable price, congrats. I’m lucky, I have the VA. Those of you that have been going without proper health care (like I did for a number of years) will find out what I did. The piece of mind is amazing. Just knowing that you have access without financial death….

  32. 32
    Liberty60 says:

    I’m covered thru my work- we just had our open enrollment demonstration, and although I can’t prove it is due to Obamacare, the covereage is better, and deductibles are lower- like, going from $1500 to $1000 lower.

    Yes, by all means- Please proceed, morans!

  33. 33
    aimai says:

    I actually think the amount of Republican disinformation and the failures of Obama marketing, from the Dem side, will work in our favor in the long run.

    1) It was not possible to get the exchanges up and running with definitive answers as to cost etc… much prior to this date. So much is riding on the states and their governors and on the insurance companies, and so much has changed day to day (and will continue to change as the people get pooled into their new insurance groups) that it was impossible to give someone just shopping around an accurate representation of what would be available to them, individually.

    2) Offering people ballpark estimates was bad enough and led to tons of carping and criticism from the left and the right as people were motivated to find something to hate in a law which both sides disliked for different reasons. There were people on this site who bitched about how much single white males between the ages of 26 and 29 might have to pay over weekly beer money. Some people simply can’t be satisfied.

    3) The scaremongering and lying on the right could not be adequately answered except by real numbers affecting real republican families. There is a salutory story up at dKos, which will be repeated over and over and over again over the next few months, of some scared republican moron whose wife doesn’t have insurance coverage being walked through the exchanges by a Kossack friend. It is only because he wasn’t listening to Obama and the Dems promise a new utopia, because he believed Republican lies about soylent green and total destruction, that whatever comes up on the exchanges turns out to be better than he ever dreamed off.

    The disjuncture between what people thought would happen and what the exchanges are is going to make more converts to Obamacare than any overselling and marketing of it before the fact ever could. In fact: I’d argue that the more bragging and marketing the dems had done before the exchanges were up the more disapointed and disaffected leftists there would have been.

  34. 34
    TaMara (BHF) says:

    Unfortunately Colorado’s plans looks as awful as when I first looked. Maybe I’m missing something. I’m still out of town, but a quick glance proved to me as gloomy as when I first checked it out. Unless I”m missing something.

  35. 35
    Crusty Dem says:

    Amazing. I’ve been wanting to start my own business for awhile now, never got past the “dream” stage, because who can do it w/a family because of insurance? Looking at the exchanges now and anything is possible.

    Time to stop dreaming.

  36. 36
    PurpleGirl says:

    @mai naem: I used your tip and got the names of the companies approved for Queens County (NY). I’ll look up each company on its own now.

  37. 37
    MazeDancer says:

    Wondering how many right wingers trying to ‘help” overload the system today. NY State site is down. If ever a state was going to benefit it is NY. Self-employed people, alone, could overwhelm the site. Combine that with journalists “researching”, and lots of error messages abound.

    On Twitter, the exact same wingy tweet was happening from many individuals. Not a re-tweet, but the exact same language on how the web site wasn’t working: “Surprise! Obamacare health insurance exchange websites don’t work”

    Clearly a template tweet. Besides the “Surprise!”, there aren’t that many people who type website as one word. But it’s also possible the wingnuts have set up some program to overload the exchange sites to go along with that Tweet.

    So, not only is uplifting to read about people getting great insurance, it is also helpful for other people who can’t get online and may have to, unfortunately, wait until slow hours in the middle of the night, or a few days from now, to get their info.

  38. 38
    Violet says:

    So happy for everyone who can now afford the insurance they need and deserve! YES WE CAN! And fuck you, Republicans, you motherfucking assholes.

  39. 39
    MomSense says:

    Thank you so much everyone for the good wishes. I keep tearing up today (at work so I’m blaming dust) and had a good cry this morning. And I do mean a good cry.

    For people who earn less than I do, wowie zowie they are going to get a huge break. The thing is this is going to make it possible for people to do so many things and to live without so much stress.

    I am really grateful to our President and all the Reps and Senators who voted for this and especially to all the volunteers who made this happen. When I was volunteering my heart out on this I had no idea that it would help me like it has. To think we have been trying to accomplish this since 1909 with Teddy Roosevelt.

  40. 40
    Bill Arnold says:

    @mistermix:

    I went to look up the rates in New York and the marketplace is down because of too much volume. That’s a good sign in my book.

    My first-two-seconds reaction to the timeouts on the NYS site were “is it a denial of service attack”? I hope somebody is doing forensics on the overload. (Which is kinda hard to excuse unless there actually is a DDoS.)

  41. 41
    Jebediah, RBG says:

    @Ash Can:

    We folks who already have both decent insurance at the present and the ability to recognize the fact that sometimes, in life, shit does happen, also are benefiting from the peace of mind the newly-opened exchanges are providing this morning.

    Yes! I have crazy good insurance through my union, but, as you say, sometimes shit happens. For me, a six-month period with fewer than 400 hours of union work means no more insurance – and my wife and I have both had cancer. (Which would probably be considered a pre-existing condition…)
    Maybe I’ll stop hearing “Yeah, I like Obama OK but he really hasn’t accomplished much.”

  42. 42

    @TaMara (BHF):

    Ugh. I think that’s going to be the story from quite a few Republican-controlled states that decided to play games with the ACA.

    If you can, you should put your information into healthcare.gov for several different states for areas with the same population and send the results to your state senator and state rep to point out that all they’ve managed to do is screw over ordinary Coloradans. It’s going to have to be pressure from inside red states that gets things to change.

  43. 43
    Keith P. says:

    I go on Medicare in January…got no idea how much that’s gonna be per month. I’m assuming/hoping it’ll be reasonable since that was one of the ideals pitched as a healthcare solution before the ACA was finalized, but still, it could end up being a big chunk taken out of my salary (and I just paid off 3 years of accumulated debts 6 months ago)

  44. 44
    PurpleGirl says:

    OT: For NYC residents. Remember today is the runoff election for Public Advocate. The contestants are Letitia James vs Daniel Squandron. Going to vote now…BBL.

  45. 45
    nerdlinger says:

    I’ve had no trouble accessing the site – I’m in Virginia – but DDoS is on my mind for sure. Folks who would blow up the country to stop folks from getting affordable health care would certainly blow up a website for the same goal.

    Right now, I have good insurance that fits within the guidelines of “affordable,” if just barely. But we get this insurance through the very, very small company my husband works for. This company is hanging on by a thread and could literally go under any day. Meanwhile, I am not eligible for insurance through my job. So really, the shit could easily hit the fan for my family.

    But the ACA makes it so that we don’t have to go without insurance (or pay $1800/month for a COBRA plan) if said shit does hit said fan. Wingnuts want to talk about freedom? Well, now my husband is free to work his job with one of those little entrepreneurial small businesses that everyone loves so much, without worrying about health insurance for his family.

    I love it. I absolutely love it.

  46. 46
    aimai says:

    @Mnemosyne (iPhone): That is such a great, great, idea Mnemo!

  47. 47
    Seanly says:

    I am glad that there are good stories coming out about the exchange rates.

    I have good PPO coverage through work. It’s probably similar to the silver plan though maybe a little better. They’d like everyone to switch to the high deductible but the wife needs periodic CATscans. I hope that the rates don’t climb too much anymore or I might have to switch to the much-lower cost high deductible (and then hope I don’t use it).

    I’ve been lucky to have good coverage even after getting let go back in 2011. But my wife & I now have pre-existing conditions. Knowing that there are decent plans out there lessens the fear of loosing employer coverage.

    Once people start seeing the actual costs and actual benefits then the conservative scare tactics and lies will die a slow death. Folks who swallowed the BS will hear from friends that the coverage is good for the costs. Or they’ll see their employer-based coverage stop climbing 10% a year (yes please!)

  48. 48
    hitchhiker says:

    People who don’t pay that much attention are going to think that troubles getting through the websites are the result of the Rs shutting down the gov’t. They’ve been waiting for this day, and now the headline is that the Rs were so determined to push it off for another year that they refused to keep the gov’t going!

    I’m fkng ecstatic this morning . . . the stupid people LOST the fight, and all that’s left for them is to predict doom. They’ll be hyping stories of people whose premiums went up all over the place, but to most of us it will all sound like waaaaahhhhhh. Because most of us know somebody who is weeping with relief today.

  49. 49
    PaulW says:

    How much of a genius was Obama to make Obamacare shutdown-proof?

    We’re shut down, but one of the few things still working is the very thing the Republicans want to break.

    bwahahahaha.

  50. 50
    Jeremy says:

    Another reason why the GOP wants to stop the ACA because they know once it’s up and running the program will continue to expand in benefits and features. A public option, expansion of subsidies, etc.

    Robert Costa of the National Review said that the Republicans are afraid that this program will be like Social Security.

  51. 51
    Mister Harvest says:

    I’m over the subsidy threshold*, and so my plans are, while affordable, nothing super-special compared to what I was paying before.

    HOWEVER.

    For a husband and wife who work for me. Right now, I’m paying $700-odd to cover just the wife (she has a raft of preexisting conditions). To cover both of them under Covered California will be:

    $2 per month.

    This is really quite wonderful.

    (* One bug, in my view, of the ACA is that the subsidy threshold is a hard threshold, rather than a taper. If you are $1 over it, you lose *all* the subsidy, and that’s a problem. But this is so much better than the alternative.)

  52. 52
    The Pale Scot says:

    Has anyone in FL been able to create an account? When I get to the security questions page the questions are nonexistent, just putting some text in the answer boxes does not work as the page says cannot create an account at this time.

  53. 53

    Okay I was just trying to sign up on healthcare.gov and the security question drop down lists would NOT open up. It let me type in the security answer but not select a question. Then I submitted and it said it was unsuccessful because the server was unavailable. Part of me thinks this is a good thing because so many people are trying to use it. The other part of me thinks that this site REALLY, REALLY needs to work and why didn’t they prepare for massive usage on the first day. From an IT standpoint, they should have prepared for this deluge.

  54. 54
    Baud says:

    @Ms. D. Ranged in AZ:

    I do think they believed the stories that people weren’t going to storm the sites early on because of lack of enough outreach.

  55. 55
    NobodySpecial says:

    @Ms. D. Ranged in AZ: Same problem here in Illinois. Security questions are blank.

  56. 56
    Richard Mayhew says:

    @Mister Harvest: This is a post that I need to write once I get some sleep (I had the middle watch last night) — the subsidies taper pretty slowly. I’ll have examples from Kaiser Foundation Subsidy calculator for it.

  57. 57
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @NobodySpecial: I’ve been getting blank security questions in NC for most of the morning. I’ve started over enough times that I’ve made a macro on my gaming keyboard for most of the registration fields.

    Even when I get the security questions, I get errors like “Please note that two of more answers to the security questions cannot be the same.” Which makes no sense, given the questions I’m selecting and their answers.

  58. 58
    Mister Harvest says:

    @Richard Mayhew: They do and they don’t. The big cliff is when you are *just* over 400% of FPL; the subsidy goes away entirely then, and that can be a shock, especially in high cost-of-living areas.

  59. 59
    Sly says:

    Due to overwhelming interest in the NY State of Health – including 2 million visits in the first 2 hours of the site launch – the health exchange is currently having log in issues. We encourage users who are unable to log in to come back to the site later when these issues will be resolved.

    GOVERNMENT INEFFICIENCY DMV POST OFFICE BUREAUCRACY LAZY PUBLIC WORKERS ARGLE BARGLE JUMPIN’ JEHOSHAPHAT HEAVENS TO MURGETROID

  60. 60
    burnspbesq says:

    Needless to say, in NPR’s story this morning about the exchanges going live, the one interview they saw fit to run was with some random guy from Iowa who claimed that the website was a total fail.

    I don’t suppose it occurred to them to actually have one of their own people try it out.

  61. 61
    John S. says:

    @The Pale Scot:

    I was having the same issue all morning. Now the security questions populate, but I still cannot create an account due to some unexplained error that appears at the end of the process.

  62. 62
  63. 63
    rdldot says:

    @Ms. D. Ranged in AZ: It’s really hard to plan for peak usage when you don’t have a history to help you plan. Wait a couple of days – that’s what I’m going to do.

  64. 64
    rdldot says:

    @TaMara (BHF): Are you sure you are putting in the right info re your income? Or are you ineligible for any of the subsidies?

  65. 65
    GWPDA says:

    Just called Rep Schweikert’s (Insane, AZ) office in DC to express my wrath, as his constituent, about his and his party’s behavior. The charming intern (Bill) proceeded to tongue lash me, tell me I was stupid, announce there was no government shut down becuase the military was being paid, as was the post office (tho, he said, it probably shouldn’t be) and there was nothing but tremendous support. I asked if I sounded as tho I supported him? He shouted some more.

    This is how a constituent is met by Tea Party Republicans. What possible reason is for them to hold office in a government they despise, as representatives of people they despise?

  66. 66
    TaMara (BHF) says:

    @rdldot: Yup. There’s a VERY small subsidy, the plans themselves are expensive and are useless. 60/40 which would bankrupt anyone. 80/20 with huge deductibles.

    Now I haven’t had a lot of time to look at it it, but I also don’t want to have to have a PhD in order to sign up for insurance. I also don’t want to pay $4000 a year for the privilege of being bankrupted anyway if I get sick.

    That’s what it looks like when I put the numbers in for the plans in my county.

  67. 67

    @rdldot: That’s not necessarily true. I’ve worked in IT for 15 years and they could have planned for the worst case scenario…it isn’t that hard. The good news is we have until March so as someone else suggested, I’ll wait a few days and try again.

    In the meantime, lets get out there and push Congress to get off their asses.

  68. 68
    rdldot says:

    @Ms. D. Ranged in AZ: I’ve worked in IT a lot longer than that and I still say it’s very hard to predict peak usage on a brand new system, when there isn’t any history or benchmark to compare it to. It will get better.

  69. 69
    Trollhattan says:

    Weekend article in the local paper analyzed the recent wave of area mortgage refinances (IIRC something like a third of the owner-occupied housing stock) and how much more discretionary income it adds to the local economy due to lower payments.

    Extrapolate this effect to drops in healthcare premiums for folks who end up with more affordable policies–surely a much larger cohort than refi-ing homeowners–and the economic stimulus might be quite significant.

    How ’bout them apples?

  70. 70
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @Ms. D. Ranged in AZ: Yeah, I don’t get that argument, either.

    You have a huge, controversial system going live. You know that you’ll be handling a lot of interest, not only from the people the system is meant to serve, but from reporters and from people who are curious if the exchange will offer better than what they have now.

    Lease extra servers and high speed switches for the first month, take ’em offline after the initial rush. It’s not that complicated.

  71. 71
    Tone in DC says:

    Due to overwhelming interest in the NY State of Health – including 2 million visits in the first 2 hours of the site launch – the health exchange is currently having log in issues. We encourage users who are unable to log in to come back to the site later when these issues will be resolved.

    GOVERNMENT INEFFICIENCY DMV POST OFFICE BUREAUCRACY LAZY PUBLIC WORKERS ARGLE BARGLE JUMPIN’ JEHOSHAPHAT HEAVENS TO MURGETROID

    I want to know… I mean, I REALLY wanna know… What the fuck is murgetroid??

    Back on the topic, I am relieved to hear that some of the exchanges are working. Given the not so loyal opposition and their fucked-in-the-head POV, I wouldn’t have been surprised if some g00per had gone to a server farm that hosts the site in their state, and gone McVeigh and tried to destroy the damn infrastructure. We all know how much wingers hate infrastructure.

  72. 72
    Jebediah, RBG says:

    @GWPDA:
    That sounds like the kind of thing that would make for a good letter to the editor – if you have the time to do so. The more people know what assholes they are, the better.

  73. 73
    Trollhattan says:

    @Tone in DC:

    What the fuck is murgetroid??

    Hazy recollection, but I think you have to channel Jimmy Durante to find out.

  74. 74

    @rdldot: Well, they know that at least 40 million people don’t have health care now and might be affected….that’s a pretty solid number to begin an estimate so I respectfully disagree with you.

    But that’s the least important thing…I do agree that it will get better and I’m content to wait.

  75. 75
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @Tone in DC:

    What the fuck is murgetroid??

    A clan in Gilbert and Sullivan’s Ruddigore.

    The phrase ‘heavens to murgatroyd’ is probably most associated with Snagglepuss from The Yogi Bear Show.

    I think both used the name because it sounds funny.

  76. 76
    KamaloKitty says:

    I just want to say to every one of these people, “Good for you, buddy! Good for you.” Affordable Insurance. Oxymoron no more?

  77. 77
    Pamoya says:

    It’s important to check out the coverage and not just the price tag. I just went to Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota to check out their exchange plans. One interesting-looking plan has a $1900 a year deductible. However, even before you meet the deductible, preventive care, tests, prenatal care, child wellness care (whatever that is) and for this particular plan, even some care for chronic conditions like diabetes and high blood pressure, you pay 0% even before you have met the deductible.

  78. 78

    […] They aren’t trying to stop it by shutting down the US Government because of the devastation and damage it will bring to the US, as their hyperbole claims (never mind that the conservative Heritage Institute advocated this type of setup in the 90′s and former Mass. governor and last Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney DID institute this kind of setup in Massachusetts, and by all accounts it works very successfully), they’re trying to stop it because they’re afraid Americans will get on the health exchanges and pass along more stories like this one sample: […]

  79. 79
    The Gray Adder says:

    @Botsplainer: Imagine that. Red Kentucky has one of the best exchanges in all the land because the governor is a Democrat. And screw the drawl. Jimmy Carter had a drawl you could cut with a knife. Dumbya had one that made him sound much stupider than he is. Bill Clinton’s drawl is still aped in many a comedy routine. Drawls don’t matter. If he spoke with an eastern KY dialect that was nearly unintelligible (we had neighbors once whose dialect took me nearly a year to learn), that might matter, but drawls don’t matter.

  80. 80

    @TaMara (BHF): Consider that most of the plans get you discounts on care and prescription drugs. I don’t know your situation, and you will have to check carefully, but it may be that matters are better than they seem.

  81. 81

    Yay! This is good news, for once. I’ve been critical of this system, and I think for good reasons, but it remains true that for many people this is going to be a godsend.

  82. 82
    steve o says:

    @Baud: To be fair, I would have had no idea today was the day if it wasn’t part of the shut-down news.

  83. 83
    former Walmart lady says:

    Hello:
    Still a lurker here mostly, I used to work at the Wal-mart here, I think I posted once in a thread about the Evil Empire. A quick update, a major health insurance company hired me in July as a customer care professional. (Yes, I answer phones on claims and a health savings account product we offer for high deductible health plans. Though I still make a little less than $15.00/hr, it’s a 40 hour work week, M-F, set schedule and I almost cried when the hiring manager told me this after I signed the contract, all major paid holidays off, including Thanksgiving and the day after Thanksgiving, oh and while the benefits are not exactly the best, still a high deductible, it does include dental and vision. I just picked up my new glasses complete with no line bifocals, with eye exam the bill came to $320, i paid $15 out of my FSA, so really with the tax break I receive on that, right around $11.. I once said everyone has a price, the buyer just needs to know what that price is and what the currency to pay the seller in. I always wanted to go back to owning my own business, and really thought about dedicating my off hours at Wal-mart towards that goal. Instead, I found I could be bought for a few paid holidays and $300 glasses.

    Sorry, I digress a bit, my whole point is that these Republicans don’t know how great these exchanges are for the insurance companies. My new hire class started in July, the most hired for this particular division for this health financial product we offer, 22 of us hired, all making about $5.00 more than the average non-union only high school diploma needed jobs in this area. We hired 16 more people, and today in our meeting were told due to unprecedented growth, we would hire 33 more people before the end of the year. We have some rabid tea party people in this meeting, and the question asked was of course, “is this due to Obamacare?” You could see the corporate hq people grow uncomfortable, but the answer turned out to be, “yes, actually a lot of these hires are due to the ACA.” The ACA helped me take a job with decent benefits, a living wage, and a place that respects and values me as an employee, and is committed to helping me grow a career if I want to do so.

    Republicans are screaming about how ACA is destroying the economy and all I want to do is scream back at them that the ACA lifted me out of poverty and actually created jobs in an area that desperately needed them.

  84. 84
    Jebediah, RBG says:

    @former Walmart lady:
    Fantastic! Your situation is a by-product of Obamacare that I hadn’t thought of. Enjoy those holidays (and your new glasses!)

  85. 85
    Ruckus says:

    @former Walmart lady:
    That is exceptional. A real job vs voluntary “slavery” at shitmart. And hearing tp idiots being upset at new business due to ACA. Sounds like a twofer day.

  86. 86
    Betsy says:

    @Violet: amen sister

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] They aren’t trying to stop it by shutting down the US Government because of the devastation and damage it will bring to the US, as their hyperbole claims (never mind that the conservative Heritage Institute advocated this type of setup in the 90′s and former Mass. governor and last Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney DID institute this kind of setup in Massachusetts, and by all accounts it works very successfully), they’re trying to stop it because they’re afraid Americans will get on the health exchanges and pass along more stories like this one sample: […]

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