I’m not a self-important man. I’m not a petty or boastful fellow. I’m not so convinced of the superiority of my intellect and/or common sense that I disdain others’ opinions automatically. I can and have been known to be wrong (if you consult the lovely and talented Mrs. Ranger she will enthusiastically confirm this). I actively police my opinions for such personality flaws. I do try and “put myself in the other guy’s shoes” and try and discern the merits of opinions I don’t necessarily share. Because of all that, I’m going to write this post to memorialize something I’m about to say that, I believe, will turn out to be probably (sadly) prophetic:
Obamacare will seriously gut this country’s economy
I’ll keep this brief (and I really mean it this time). All I’m going to do is to spit out a few facts of my own personal situation and then make a few observations and leave this here so we can all either come back and laugh at it later…or wonder why, if I was so damned prescient, didn’t I play the Powerball.
I am a married father of 2 kids living just outside of Atlanta, GA. Our ages are 47 (me), less than 47 (Mrs. Ranger), 13 (Ms. Ranger), and 11 (Mini-Ranger). None of us smoke or are morbidly obese. We have a health insurance policy that I secured via eHealthinsurance.com that I pay $4665 per year in premiums that features a prescription drug plan and has a 20% co-pay and $3500 individual deductible. It’s with a reputable highly rated company. It’s not cheap and the coverage is, by no means, one of those “Cadillac” plans we’ve been hearing the President and his parrots in the mainstream media snorting derisively at. I’m a middle class guy earning a middle class paycheck and this is the health insurance coverage I can afford. Obamacare, as pretty much all of you by now have heard, started a few days back (October 1). I’ve had coverage so I never really concerned myself all that much the dire doom and gloom warnings we’ve all heard about the economic Armageddon we’ll all get cordially invited to when the entirety of the the ACA (the soon-to-be-widely-recognized-for-its-immense-irony named Affordable Care Act, aka: “Obamacare”) kicks in. That said, I got a letter in the mail from my carrier the other day inviting me to partake of a one time opportunity to reset my current health policy to a December 1 inception date (so that it runs from 12/1/13 to 11/30/14) for a mere monthly premium increase of $40. I looked at this letter and wondered “why the hell would I volunteer to pay nearly $500 per year more for the same coverage I already have”? It was then that I came across an online forum wherein a poster (we’ll go ahead and safely and with little real debate refer to him as “f***ing idiot”) was crowing about what a great thing Obamacare is and will become. To prove what a great thing it is, he helpfully posted a subsidy calculator (check it out here: http://kff.org/interactive/subsidy-calculator/) to tell you how much “free money” you’d qualify for to help pay for your healthcare due to the changes coming with Obamacare. Needless to say, because I worked hard, went to school, got an education and then actually worked at many and several jobs over the years…my family doesn’t qualify for a subsidy. Oh well, I thought, that’s hardly surprising. But what I read further down the page on that site after I entered my details really took me by surprise. It told me that the predicted cost for an unsubsidized premium for a “silver plan” (read: “worse than the plan I currently have”) would be $9780 per year. Let me say that again: for worse coverage (in our case, higher deductible and coverages we don’t need, don’t use and don’t want) we can expect to have to pay 109% MORE THAN WE DO NOW! Even their cheapest plan coverage level, “bronze”, comes in at a predicted $6656 per year or just a 42% increase (and with much, much worse coverage).
Well, after I emptied the outrage-inspired crap out of my trousers, I said “to hell with predictions, let’s go quote a policy and see what I can find”. So, I went over to eHealthinsurance.com (where I bought our last two policies) to see what I could get for a quote today. Cheapest that I can quote now is $7104 per year and that’s with the deductible getting jacked up to $6350 per person and going to a 30% copay. That’s a jump of 53% in a single year…and that’s literally the cheapest private option on that site for us for much worse coverage.
Just to summarize: I’ve been “invited” to extend our current coverage and pay an additional $500 per year to do so but because of the absolute crap premiums I’m staring down due to Obamacare, that’s actually a great deal. The absolute best I can hope from, from what I’ve been able to discern just earlier today, is a jump in my family’s health insurance premiums of at least +40%. Let me be clear here: this isn’t predictions or estimates or “according to statistics from blablabla”. This is the actual, no shit reality me and my family is facing as a direct consequence of this country voting for Barack Obama as our president.
That’s the best case scenario…and I get absolutely nothing more for that huge outlay than I’m getting today. To put it another way: my already tight budget is going to need to squeeze out an additional $2000 in 2014…all so someone else can have what I have but didn’t bother to work for to afford. And this is merely the best part. We didn’t even discuss what employers are going to do when this shitstorm hits. Companies are already turning full time jobs into part time jobs (cutting hours and pay) because the employer mandate says the employer only needs to pay the health care premiums for full time employees. It’s pretty mercenary of an employer to do that but hey, this isn’t their idea, is it? Employers do what the economy dictates and this law dictates that full time employment will now become an elitist, status symbol…ironically driving even more people to the public dole than Obama has managed to do in his first 5 years in office.
The American Dream officially died today people…and you have Hopey Hussein McChange to thank for it.
My name is Euroranger and I approved this message.