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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-02-2009, 07:56 PM Thread Starter
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Can't afford healthcare?

You'll be fined.

Senate Bill Would Fine People More Than $1,000 for Refusing Health Care Coverage
Senate aides said the penalties, estimated to raise around $36 billion over 10 years, would be modeled on the approach taken by Massachusetts, which now imposes a fine of about $1,000 a year on individuals who refuse to get coverage.


Thursday, July 02, 2009

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WASHINGTON -- Americans who refuse to buy affordable medical coverage could be hit with fines of more than $1,000 under a health care overhaul bill unveiled Thursday by key Senate Democrats looking to fulfill President Obama's top domestic priority.

The Congressional Budget Office estimated the fines will raise around $36 billion over 10 years. Senate aides said the penalties would be modeled on the approach taken by Massachusetts, which now imposes a fine of about $1,000 a year on individuals who refuse to get coverage. Under the federal legislation, families would pay higher penalties than individuals.

In a revamped health care system envisioned by lawmakers, people would be required to carry health insurance just like motorists must get auto coverage now. The government would provide subsidies for the poor and many middle-class families, but those who still refuse to sign up would face penalties.

Called "shared responsibility payments," the fines would be set at least half the cost of basic medical coverage, according to the legislation.

In 2008, employer-provided coverage averaged $12,680 a year for a family plan, and $4,704 for individual coverage, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation's annual survey. Senate aides, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly, said the cost of the federal plan would be lower but declined to provide specifics.

The legislation would exempt certain hardship cases from fines. The fines would be collected through the income tax system.

The new proposals were released as Congress neared the end of a weeklong July 4 break, with lawmakers expected to quickly take up health care legislation when they return to Washington. With deepening divisions along partisan and ideological lines, the complex legislation faces an uncertain future.

Obama wants a bill this year that would provide coverage to the nearly 50 million Americans who lack it and reduce medical costs.

In a statement, Obama welcomed the legislation, saying it "reflects many of the principles I've laid out, such as reforms that will prohibit insurance companies from refusing coverage for people with pre-existing conditions and the concept of insurance exchanges where individuals can find affordable coverage if they lose their jobs, move or get sick."

The Senate Health Education, Labor and Pensions bill also calls for a government-run insurance option to compete with private plans as well as a $750-per-worker annual fee on larger companies that do not offer coverage to employees.

Sens. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass., and Christopher Dodd, D-Conn., said in a letter to colleagues that their revised plan would cost dramatically less than an earlier, incomplete proposal, and help show the way toward coverage for 97 percent of all Americans.

In a conference call with reporters, Dodd said the revised bill had brought "historic reform of health care" closer. He said the bill's public option will bring coverage and benefit decisions driven "not by what generates the biggest profits, but by what works best for American families."

The two senators said the Congressional Budget Office put the cost of the proposal at $611.4 billion over 10 years, down from $1 trillion two weeks ago.

However, the total cost of legislation will rise considerably once provisions are added to subsidize health insurance for the poor through Medicaid. Those additions, needed to ensure coverage for nearly all U.S. residents, are being handled by a separate panel, the Senate Finance Committee. Bipartisan talks on the Finance panel aim to hold the overall price tag to $1 trillion.

The Health Committee could complete its portion of the bill as soon as next week, and the presence of a government health insurance option virtually assures a party-line vote.

In the Senate, the Finance Committee version of the bill is unlikely to include a government-run insurance option. Bipartisan negotiations are centered on a proposal for a nonprofit insurance cooperative as a competitor to private companies.

Three committees are collaborating in the House on legislation expected to come to a vote by the end of July. That measure is certain to include a government-run insurance option.

At their heart, all the bills would require insurance companies to sell coverage to any applicant, without charging higher premiums for pre-existing medical conditions. The poor and some middle-class families would qualify for government subsidies to help with the cost of coverage. The government's costs would be covered by a combination of higher taxes and cuts in projected Medicare and Medicaid spending.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-03-2009, 09:17 AM
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further proof of the total stupidity that follows canada. We will have to pay for private and public healthcare.

What's fucked up is at full face value of medical services I have required in the last 4 years has been about $10k. ONe of which was an emergency room trip via ambulance, the other was minor surgery..about 700 bucks. The premiums for my coverage through work have been easily 3 times that or more. I would have gladly taken an increase in pay and covered it myself.

Fuck Obama and the dems.

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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-03-2009, 09:32 AM
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Yea, the insurance system pisses me off. I am self employed and obviously pay my families health insurance. My son broke his wrist and had to have surgery. We have a $5K deductable and a max $3K out of pocket and you must use in network docs and you have to pay co-pay and they only cover agreed and customary fees. So after giving them $6700 a year for the past several years I got to spend $5K for deductable, another 2K in fees that are above what "they" deem customary, which by the way does not count toward your deductable or max out of pocket expense. So now that everything is pretty much met and insurance can start helping with the bills, he is fine and fully recovered. Oh by the way they said they would only pay $30.00 per visit for occupational therapy as that was customary, however my $110.00 bill a visit says otherwise. In there defense they negotiated a much cheaper rate for me, however if you tell the doctors you have no insurance they somehow come up with a revised bill that is very close to what the "negotiated" rate is from the insurance.

Summary, paying the bills without insurance would be much cheaper unless I am one of the poor bastards that get cancer or heart disease or a major car wreck. Then in that case you get to hire a lawyer and go to court to try to get them to pay for what they are supposed to cover; then your lawyer wants top drag it out because afterall that is how he gets paid and if you happen to go to court a few times well thats okay too because he gets to charge you more for that.

Sorry for the rant, but the economy is kicking my ass and these little side stories are adding to the problems....

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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-03-2009, 09:51 AM
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So wait... I'm cornfused.. They want nationalized health care (which i read to be low cost/free etc) But still want us to pay for health insurance, or fine us if we don't? These thieving cocksuckers just want our money any which way they can! Fuck my life..

So that part in the constitution about the people having the power to kick the govt out and reinstate new gov't... how do we go about doing so? This shit has to stop. It's out of fucking hand.

That's directed at you, UHHHbama
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-03-2009, 09:54 AM
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this is the stupidest piece of legislation out there, and I blame mitt romney, he started this mandatory health care. first off not everyone can afford health insurance, and not every company provides it, what do you tell a single mother making minimum wage at walmart trying to raise a couple kids? she does everything right but still cant afford health insurance. and what about people who are uninsurable? going to fine them too??

you know this use to be a free country, and its not Obamas fault or Bushes fault that this country has turned into a cluster fuck, its the special interest groups that lobby our politicians so that they can get their hands on our hard earned cash. I have no doubt that there are health insurance lobbyists that want to see this bill pass, because it will force a 1/3 of americans to buy into their health plan.

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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-03-2009, 09:57 AM
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If they cannot afford to pay their medical bills without insurance, how do you expect them to pay a $1,000 fine. That is pure stupidity, and pisses me off, but not near as much as the government trying to run every aspect of our lives does.

In a way, I'm glad that in the past few years, I've become more politically informed, but at the same time, I'm not as I'm seeing history being made in a severely negative approach.

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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-03-2009, 10:22 AM
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Dictatorship here we come!

Listen to my buddy, Jeff Bolton, from 6-9 AM Mon-Fri.

Obamanomics = Trickle Up Poverty

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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-03-2009, 11:10 AM
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Damn, in the last year I have not had to go to the doctor at all. No emergency room visits, and the couple dentist visits were out of pocket.

I own my business, which does not provide health insurance. I don't have kids to be responsible for. I have an account set up for medical instead of the outrageous cost of insurance because it saves me, apparently, $7,000 dollars a year.

So, I will have to pay in an extra $1000 fucking dollars in taxes, oh excuse me, fines for not having insurance? Bullshit!!
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-03-2009, 11:21 AM
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As a former small employer I can say that this is one of the more stupid pieces of legislation. Maybe the big employers can negotiate a better group price, but the little employers cannot and are stuck with paying the full price. Insurance was always a hassle for us, we were constantly changing healthcare providers because of increasing prices.

So, I see one of two things happening. #1 - the legislation will result in massive layoffs, or #2 - (more likely) the employers will shift responsibility for health insurance directly to employees and will quit providing it as a benefit.

Health care purchased individually is hella expensive. Some people may opt to pay the $1k fine instead of being insured, it's a hell of a lot cheaper.

I don't see this piece of sorry legislation solving anything.
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-03-2009, 12:03 PM
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Moving to mexico sounds like a better idea everyday.

#9173. Doesn't look like one, but it is.
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-03-2009, 01:54 PM
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Originally Posted by 04Roush View Post
Moving to mexico sounds like a better idea everyday.
uhh.. no

NO NO NO, it should be DFWLS1's, CUMMINS, C6
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-03-2009, 02:17 PM Thread Starter
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NOt to me. I thought about it but conservatives need to stay here and fight and take the country back.
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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-03-2009, 02:29 PM
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Originally Posted by forever_frost View Post
NOt to me. I thought about it but conservatives need to stay here and fight and take the country back.
Sounds great in theory. But when push comes to shove, I wonder how many will be standing ready and willing. Furthermore, I would never move to mexico. I guess I should have picked a different smile to convey my sarcasm.

#9173. Doesn't look like one, but it is.
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