This is really insane. I cannot believe that we have gotten this far with the propaganda in this country.
People, this bill provides no new insurer into the market place, yet forces people to buy insurance. How is this a good thing?
The original program was to create a public option that was supposed to negotiate for lower prices on behalf of people, but now that is gone. In fact, when Harry Reid tried to include a minuscule public option (the original public option was supposed to cover 130 million people. His would apparently cover 6) that still wouldn’t be able to negotiate for lower rates, Barack Obama, who had said he was for the public option (this was of course before he came under the sway of former GOP Congressman and Phrma lobbyist Billy Tauzin) “actively discourag[ed] Senate Democrats in their effort to include a public insurance option with a state opt-out clause as part of health care reform.”
This was because Obama now suddenly favored a “trigger option,” which basically meant that only if the insurance industry failed to meet certain standards would the public option come into place. Assuming this is ever enforced, apparently these new state-wide public options are supposed to spring up overnight and compete with the collective bargaining power of national insurance companies. These state-wide public options will in all likelihood have no collective bargaining power, and appear just to be a figment of protection while we actually give insurance agencies full reign over the marketplace.
None of this even accounts for the draconian measures in the bill. According to the Congressional Budget Office, in 2016 the lowest individual insurance policy will be $5,300, and the lowest family plan will be $15,000. Because this is “mandated,” it means that everyone in the country will have to have a policy. That means at the minimum $5,300 is going to have to come out of your pocket every year.
What happens if you “willfully” do not buy insurance?
• Section 7203 – misdemeanor willful failure to pay is punishable by a fine of up to $25,000 and/or imprisonment of up to one year.
• Section 7201 – felony willful evasion is punishable by a fine of up to $250,000 and/or imprisonment of up to five years.” [page 3]
That’s right. According to the Joint Committee on Taxation, if you “willfully evade” your new found duty of buying an insurance policy, you could be fined $250,000 and put in jail for up to five years.
This entire thing is ridiculous and a complete give away to the insurance industry, an insurance industry whose premiums have risen more than four times faster than the rate of inflation over the past ten years, an insurance industry that deliberately understates its profits by 200-1000%.
People need to make a stink about this. This bill isn’t good for anyone except for blood-sucking insurers. We need to vote everyone pushing for this bill ASAP.