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Government, insurance companies & hospitals are now biz partners

  • Published in Letters

To The Daily Sun,

The working poor and middle class still cannot afford medical insurance under the Affordable Care Act. People that struggle every day to make ends meet now have to navigate a website or wait on the phone for more than hour, only find out they cannot afford the insurance. State Senator Andrew Hosmer and State Representative David Huot, have embraced this poorly-crafted big-government solution with 18 new taxes publicly. The Medicaid expansion allows the government to put a lien on your property naming Medicaid as the first beneficiary when you die. Both politicians advocate allowing the state to expand Medicaid to people with incomes up to 133 percent of the poverty level ($15,300 for a single person). A large majority of the poor work multiple jobs to make ends meet, earning more than $15,300 requires them to buy insurance in the exchange or face fines. Expanding Medicare allows able-body people who chose to work part-time to get free medical insurance while the rest of us pay fines or get saddled with overpriced policies for working full-time.
The State of New Hampshire spends 1.4 billion dollars, or 25 percent of the annual budget, helping the sick and poor with medical expenses. The federal government reimburses the state at 50 cents on the dollar. The federal government has offered to pay for expanding Medicaid but after three years the federal government will only fund 90 percent. All the federal funds for this program will be from freshly printed money or borrowed from China. After three years the State of New Hampshire will have to finance the gap through higher property taxes or cuts in other government services. Currently, New Hampshire has the highest business profits tax in the nation and the second highest rooms and meals tax in the country — tied with California. Raising these taxes will have a negative impact on New Hampshire's economy. There is a genuine concern that the federal government will not keep their promise with a growing 17 trillion dollar deficit and more than 90 trillion dollars in unfunded future liabilities. The question is not if the federal government will default, but when.
The working poor live hand to mouth every week and will be hit with a $695 fine in 2016 if they do not buy insurance they cannot afford. The lowest level insurance (bronze level) is more than three hundred dollars a month for a single person with high deductibles and co-pays they cannot afford. The working poor will have a choice to pay $3,600 a year for unusable insurance or pay a $695 fine. We now have the right to purchase insurance when we get sick because there are no preexisting condition exceptions. It makes financial sense to pay the fine if you are healthy. The working poor will have to make the decision what is more painful the fine or the cost of insurance. If they get sick they will buy the insurance and when they are better it will be dropped. Remember these people need every dollar. They worry about food, shelter, and transportation every week. A better use of public funds would to be support clinics that provide care to the working poor, circumventing insurance companies and hospitals with over paid CEOs. Unfortunately, the working poor will have another option if Medicaid is expanded. They can now choose to work part-time and get free medical, more food stamps, along with fuel and housing assistance. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office report says more than 2 million people will decide not to work, or will decide to work less, due to the Affordable Care Act. We have designed a system to reward less work and punish those that want to be productive and self- supporting.
Currently, New Hampshire has one medical insurance company approved by the state exchange. We are now paying the second highest premiums in the nation. Imagine if one oil company owned every gasoline station in the state. Who do you think would be the winner the consumer or the oil company? Competition always benefits the consumer. A better health care law would have allow New Hampshire residents or businesses to buy insurance across state lines like car insurance and tailor the plans to their needs and ability to pay. If this was the case more businesses would offer insurance and would be more affordable to all. Preexisting conditions need to be addressed. I believe people with uninsurable preexisting conditions should be allowed to join Medicare (not Medicaid) to ensure they get the care they need but only for their uninsurable condition. Currently, the government mandates it for some illnesses even if you have insurance. You are required to pay the quarterly Medicare premium plus your existing private medical insurance.
Unfortunately, big government, the insurance companies and hospitals are now business partners profiting at our expense. The government gets more tax receipts and control of your life with all your personal information. The insurance companies and hospitals walk away with more cash. Thanks to their new business partnership they can now maximize profits by using the federal government's hammer of taxation while promoting crony capitalism with more corporate welfare. Remember to thank your big government politicians in the 2014 elections for promoting and supporting these bad policies that make health care even more unaffordable for the working class. If you really want to promote prosperity for all Americans support candidates who believe in pro growth economic policies instead of the government managed status quo that keeps you poor and needy. The number one social program all politicians should be working on is JOBS! Big government politicians believe prosperity is a dirty word because if you're prosperous you would not vote for them.
Ask your state senator to take the pledge to not expand Medicaid in any form. Able bodied people that choose to work part time should not get free medical insurance while working people struggle to keep their heads above water.

David DeVoy