Who do you support for Governor in Pe...

Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54095 Nov 18, 2013
No, Democrats are not turning against the Affordable Care Act

Here’s what we can say about Democrats’ behavior ever since the law passed. They’ve been willing (and perhaps even eager) to distance themselves from whatever Republicans or the press were highlighting about the downside of reform at any given moment, as long as this distancing did not risk the core of the law, either because marginal issues can be fixed without undermining it, or because they were casting free votes for something that would never, ever become law. When something really did threaten reform (such as in all the repeal votes), they suddenly returned to the votes they cast back in 2009 and 2010.

Is it possible that Democrats could, if they reach a high enough level of panic, eventually support out and out repeal? No, they won’t.

Sure, it’s possible a handful of conservative Dems who have always opposed Obamacare will underline support for repeal, and the press corps will get very excited if that happens.

But for the vast bulk of mainstream Democrats, this is a decision that has already been made; they aren’t going to reverse it; and any current positioning doesn’t indicate otherwise.


Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54099 Nov 18, 2013
Amanda Marcotte:

Conservative Group Tries To Bribe Young People To Stay Uninsured With Beer

It’s clear Generation Opportunity has zero interest in helping people find the non-existent “affordable” options for actual health insurance. What they’re actually trying to do is convince young people to skip getting health insurance and just take their chances.

It is true that consuming alcohol helps get young people into that risk-taking mindset, but what Generation Opportunity fails to understand is that people do sober up, and when they do, they’re probably not going to be as keen on the idea of skipping insurance and seeing what happens as they were when they were drunk.

Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54100 Nov 18, 2013
That Florida woman's canceled Blue Cross policy? It's junk insurance.
She can get a real plan for only $165 a month

Here are some of the gory details.(You can see the rest for yourself on this complete plan summary from the insurance company.)

The plan pays only the first $50 of doctor visits, leaving Ms. Barrette to pay the rest. Specialist visits can cost several hundred dollars.
Only the first $15 of a prescription is covered. Some prescriptions can cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars a month
The plan only pays for hospitalization for "complications of pregnancy," which are unlikely given Ms. Barrette's age and in any event only the first $50 is covered.
It pays $50 for a mammogram that can cost several hundred dollars, and only pays $50 apiece for advanced imaging tests such as MRIs and CT scans and then only when used for osteoporosis screening.

"She's paying $650 a year to be uninsured," Karen Pollitz, an insurance expert at the nonprofit Kaiser Family Foundation, said. "I have to assume that she never really had to make much of a claim under this policy. She would have lost the house she's sitting in if something serious had happened. I don't know if she knows that."

In fact, had Blue Cross Blue Shield allowed her to keep the plan, she would have been fined for going uninsured in 2014. Limited plans such as these are considered "excepted benefits" that don't fulfill the new obligation to have health coverage.


Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54101 Nov 18, 2013
How To Spot A Fake Obamacare Horror Story

Since insurers have begun informing beneficiaries that their health care plans do not meet the new federal requirements of Obamacare, and will be either cancelled or significantly altered, the media has profiled countless middle class Americans who claim that the new health care law will force them to pay more for coverage.

Deborah Cavallaro, for instance, a real estate agent from Los Angeles, was enrolled in an individual plan that cost her just $293 per month. Under Obamacare, Cavallaro says she’ll have to pay over $400 for coverage she doesn’t need or want. But a higher premium doesn’t tell the whole story: while Cavallaro may spend more each month, she’ll be buying more comprehensive insurance with fewer out-of-pocket costs, better benefits that will cover more and cost her less if she actually falls ill, and much more robust consumer protections.

So before you buy into the sticker shock hysteria, here are four questions you should ask:


West Mifflin, PA

#54104 Nov 18, 2013
Obamacare insurance premiums could rise considerably if more young, healthy people don’t enroll in health exchange

Fears that insurance exchanges that are the linchpin of President Barack Obama's federal health care overhaul wouldn't attract the young, healthy people needed to make them financially viable are being heightened by the early results of signups in several states.

If it becomes a trend, that could lead to increases in insurance premiums and deductibles next year. Along with the paltry enrollment numbers released this week, officials in a handful of states said those who had managed to sign up were generally older people with medical problems — those with the greatest incentives to get coverage.

It's unclear whether that will persist. Young, healthy people may be more inclined to procrastinate, especially given doubts about the law's technically flawed online signup system. They have until Dec. 15 to sign up if they want to be covered on Jan. 1.

Insurers have warned that they need a wide range of people signing up for coverage because premiums paid by adults in the younger and healthier group, between 18 and 35, are needed to offset the cost of carrying older and sicker customers who typically generate far more in medical bills than they contribute in premiums.

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/prem...

West Mifflin, PA

#54105 Nov 18, 2013
In general, someone in his 60s uses $6 in health care services for every $1 tallied by someone in his 20s, said Nicole Kasabian Evans of the California Association of Health Plans. That makes younger adults a coveted group on industry balance sheets.

If those signing up trend to the elderly and sickly "your insurance is going to cost more and that will discourage those younger people from coming in," warned Lisa Folberg, a vice president with the California Medical Association. Faced with steep prices, younger people could opt to pay a government fine rather than purchase coverage.

The potential for rising monthly premiums and higher policy deductibles is just one deterrent to convincing young people to sign up for coverage on the exchanges. The technological problems that have plagued the federal exchange, which is running in 36 states, and many state-run online marketplaces are slowing enrollment. And scattered reports of data breaches have the potential to scare off even more people.

Efforts to attract adults younger than 35, often referred to as "young invincibles," include multimillion dollar advertising campaigns, which have launched in several states.

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/prem...

West Mifflin, PA

#54106 Nov 18, 2013

"We are making an extra push to reach young adults, and we do expect they're going to take a lot of encouraging because they tend to wait until the last minute," said Myung Kim, spokeswoman for Colorado's exchange.

If such efforts fail and insurance companies end up with too many sick or expensive customers, they might need to increase premiums or eventually leave markets to avoid taking heavy financial losses.

"It's going to be very messy for the next couple of years, until we figure out who is buying insurance," said Glenn Melnick, director of the Center for Health Financing, Policy and Management at the University of Southern California. "There are a lot of pieces of this that are just black boxes right now."

Aetna Chairman and chief executive Mark Bertolini said last month that it was "incredibly important" to get the exchange websites running properly because "the younger, healthier people aren't going to give them more than one shot."

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/prem...

West Mifflin, PA

#54107 Nov 18, 2013
For Obamacare to succeed, it's crucial for young people to sign up.
Healthy young Americans need to pay into the insurance system to help cover the costs for older, sicker people.
So the White House is reaching out. Its website sent emails to subscribers with a big, orange graphic that says half of young people can get coverage for $50 a month or less.
And there's a link to an online video featuring David Simas, an assistant to the president, who touts that statistic again. "Nearly 50 percent of young, single adults will be eligible for a plan at $50 a month or less," he says. "That's an amazing rate."
But is that accurate? The short answer is no — at least not according to the administration's own analysis. The report done by the Department of Health and Human Services actually says it's only 32 percent of single, uninsured young adults who can get health coverage that cheap. The rest will have to pay more.
Now to be fair, the administration mentions on its blog, emails and press releases that this $50-or-less number refers to people who are "eligible for the health insurance marketplace." But it doesn't explain that that qualifier eliminates more than half of uninsured young Americans. For that you have to read the actual report.
If you do, you'll see that most young Americans actually don't make enough money to qualify for the public exchanges.

People like that were supposed to be covered by Medicaid. The Affordable Care Act compelled states to expand their Medicaid coverage and be reimbursed by the federal government for the extra cost. But the Supreme Court struck down that part of the law, and states got the right to opt out.
By the latest count, 25 states — 22 of them with Republican governors — are so far not expanding Medicaid. So many young people in those states fall through the cracks.
OK, so back to that $50 health care claim, which should probably have a big asterisk next to it.
"It's really just trying to get young people to check out their options," says Jonathan Gruber, an MIT professor who was a consultant to President Obama on the development of the Affordable Care Act. Gruber says he doesn't know if all the White House statements are accurate.
The president himself is encouraging young people to check out just how affordable health coverage can be. He spoke to supporters at a hotel in Washington this month. "Most of the young people in this country who don't have health insurance currently are going to be able to get it for less than their cellphone bill, less than their cable bill," he said.
But the actual numbers in the administration's own study show that, without some qualifiers and asterisks, it's still a bit of a stretch. According to the HHS study, 40 percent of young people under 35 can get coverage for $100 a month or less.
Some of these sound bites may seem a bit oversimplified or overstated. "The goal of a statement like that is to really just say to young people: Hey, there's good low-cost options out there," Gruber says. "And for many of you it could be $50 a month. For some it could be a bit more, but it will be surprisingly cheap once you look at it. And the important point is for people to get on the website and shop."
So in other words, it's like any other marketing campaign. All the pitches aren't exactly, entirely true, but they do get your attention.


West Mifflin, PA

#54108 Nov 18, 2013
Young People Still Not Signing Up For ObamaCare

Experts say that young, healthy people must enroll in ObamaCare’s health exchanges to cover the cost of insuring sicker, older people. It’s a simple math equation: Charge everyone roughly the same rate for access to basically the same product. The people who use it less will subsidize the people who use it more.

The problem with this plan is that it hoses young, relatively poor people like me right when we least need high bills for services they’re not using. And it helps older, relatively rich people who should be able to afford the care they need. If America’s downtrodden and struggling young people are smart, they’ll opt out. Then it’ll be up to the federal government to fine them enough to make up for the shortfall.

A report from the conservative American Action Forum found that health insurance rates for 2.7 million people aged 18 to 35 — the so-called young invincibles crucial to the health-care law’s success — would rise dramatically.

“Due to the ACA’s sweeping market reforms, rates for low-premium plans have increased exponentially between 2013 and 2014. In fact, on average, a healthy 30 year old male nonsmoker will see his lowest cost insurance option increase 260 percent,” reads AAF’s report.

A healthy 30-year-old would see his health insurance costs rise in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

Pre-Obamacare premiums average about $62 per month, according to AAF, while post-Obamacare premiums average about $187 per month — a 202 percent difference. The average change between 2013 and 2014 low-cost premiums is 260 percent.

bad news for barack

West Mifflin, PA

#54113 Nov 18, 2013
The Obamacare Exchange Scorecard: Around 100,000 Enrollees And Five Million Cancellations

HHS has released the official numbers. The HHS report states that only 26,794 people enrolled in the federal exchange—which amounts to 23 per state per day—and 79,391 enrolled in the state-based exchanges, for a total of 106,185.

In the market for individually-purchased health insurance, more than 4.8 million Americans have received notices that their preexisting plans are soon to be illegal, and will be cancelled. Many more cancellation notices are imminent. But yesterday, the Wall Street Journal obtained information regarding the number of people who have signed up for new private health coverage under Obamacare:“40,000 to 50,000” for the federal exchange, and 49,000 for 12 of the 14 state-based exchanges.

White House falls short of target by around 80%

bad news for barack

West Mifflin, PA

#54114 Nov 18, 2013
DEBORAH PERSICO, Washington, D.C.: Hello. This is Deborah Persico.

Beginning some time in October, I actually had just gotten my rate renewal for my current plan. My premiums had gone up to $297 a month. The deductible of $2,700 was still the same. The out-of-pocket maximum expenses of $3,200 was still the same. But my premium had just gone up a little bit.

Convincing 'young invincibles' to sign up for coverage And a couple weeks later, I got another letter from CareFirst telling me that that policy didn't qualify under the Affordable Care Act, and that by next October, at the time of my renewal, that policy was going to be canceled. I nearly fell off the chair because, for years, all I had heard from President Obama, if you like your policy, you can keep your policy; if you like your doctors, you can keep your doctors.

I have excellent coverage with the plan I now have. I have hospitalization, and doctor care, and labs, and blood tests, physical therapy, ambulance, hospitalization. I mean, everything is included in this plan that I feel I would need.

It is a PPO, which I really wanted to be in, and I'm perfectly satisfied with this plan. So, once I received this letter from CareFirst, I was completely shocked. I could not figure out what was happening, and then I started the process of trying to find out what the new available policies were.

What I found in the bronze level, not the platinum level, in the bronze level, there's a PPO HSA policy that, between the higher premiums and the much higher maximum out-of-pocket costs, will cost me probably more than $5,000 a year more than what I'm already paying for health insurance.

It's been a total sticker shock. I have had some health issues this year, and I have had to reduce some of my workload. It's a real hardship right now. My husband is 67 years old. I'm 58. We are desperately trying to save for retirement.

As I said, we are both self-employed, so we don't have a pension from some company. And $5,000 more a year is not pocket change. You know, it's really going to affect us. And now it makes no difference that we tried to cut back on other expenses, because it's all going to be absorbed by the new health care policy.

Ghost of Trayvon Martin

Hazleton, PA

#54116 Nov 18, 2013
My murderer is be in jail again. When will da Black Panthers avenge me?

Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54119 Nov 18, 2013
GOP Ramps Up Smear Campaign Against Obamacare Navigators

Beware anybody trying to help people sign up for health insurance under Obamacare.

That's the line from top Senate Republicans, who have magnified their smear campaign against the law's so-called navigators, groups that have received federal money to assist people in enrolling for coverage. Their latest shot: darkly warning that Americans could put their personal and financial safety at risk if they seek out assistance.

Republicans have a longstanding animosity toward the navigators -- state officials in a number of red states have put up roadblocks for them -- but the comments of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Senate Minority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX) and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) are a new extreme in the party's assault on those tasked with helping Americans navigate the health reform law.


Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54120 Nov 18, 2013
We have officially reached peak 'Obamacare/Dems in disarray' delusion

Josh Kraushaar of National Journal opines:

Unless the HealthCare.gov website miraculously gets fixed by next month, there's a growing likelihood that over time, enough Democrats may join Republicans to decide to start over and scrap the whole complex health care enterprise.[...]

Would President Obama sign a death warrant on his own signature legislation? That's almost impossible to imagine, but it's entirely reasonable that he may not have a choice in the matter.

And why would they have no choice in the matter? Because, Kraushaar says, Congress may soon have veto-proof majorities in both chambers that want to repeal Obamacare. But, as Jason Linkins asks:

Cool story, bro, but you got any sources on this?

As it turns out, the answer is no. The closest he comes is an anonymous quote from a "Democratic campaign operative," but even that quote ("we don't care what the White House says") doesn't support Kraushaar's claims that repeal is right around the corner.


Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54122 Nov 18, 2013
Right wing cyber attacks on Healthcare.gov website confirmed

Roberta Stempfley highlighted one successful attack that is designed to deny access to the website called a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack. A DDoS attack is designed to make a network unavailable to intended users, generally through a concerted effort to disrupt service such as repeatedly accessing the servers, saturating them with more traffic than the website is designed to handle.

Right wingers have been distributing the link to the necessary tools to perform the attacks on the Healthcare.gov website through social networking, as pointed out by Information Week, and other websites .

The name of the attack tool is called, "Destroy Obama Care!"


Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54126 Nov 18, 2013
Which of the following politicians apologized after uttering erroneous claims about the Affordable Care Act?

Hint: The only guy who apologized is the Democrat.

And he's also the only one being exorcised on the 24/7 news cycle daily, even though he did apologize. The rest? Hey, they're Re- and tea-publicans, so it's their right to be wrong:

"If you like your health insurance, you can keep it." -- Barack Obama

"This is government taking over the entire health insurance industry. The American people ... do not want the government telling them what kind of insurance policy they have to buy, and how much they have to pay for it, and if you don’t like it we’re going to tax you." -- House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio)

"Obamacare adds trillions to our deficits and to our national debt.... Only one president has ever cut Medicare for seniors in this country: Barack Obama." -- Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney

"The health care law rations care, like systems in Canada and Great Britain." -- Florida Gov. Rick Scott

"The health care law has 'death panels.' " -- Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin

The IRS is going to be "in charge" of "a huge national database" on health care that will include Americans’ "personal, intimate, most close-to-the-vest-secrets. " -- Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn.

Under Obamacare, "75 percent of small businesses now say they are going to be forced to either fire workers or cut their hours." -- Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla.

Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54127 Nov 18, 2013
GOP Food Stamp Cuts Would Kick 170,000 Vets Out of the Program

Republicans will salute America's veterans Monday, while simultaneously trying to deny them benefits. In addition to reducing housing aid, and denying health care to vets, the GOP is also trying to remove thousands of vets from the food stamp program, known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP.

At least 900,000 veterans rely on SNAP. The House Republican version of the farm bill, the five-year piece of legislation that funds nutrition and agriculture provisions, would slash funding for the food stamps program by nearly $40 billion and boot 2.8 million people off the program next year. That includes 170,000 veterans, who would be removed through a provision in the bill that would eliminate food stamps eligibility for non-elderly jobless adults who can't find work or an opening in a job training program.


Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54132 Nov 18, 2013
Serial Liar, James O’Keefe, Releases Another Deceitfully Edited Video: ObamaCare Edition

However, we can’t know for sure whether they did that because the videos are so heavily edited that there is no way to discern the actual context. Also, the people O’Keefe’s shill spoke with weren’t certified navigators, but were in fact trainees. So the prospect of them making a few mistakes shouldn’t shock anyone.

In one case, though, it is apparent that the navigators did not do what O’Keefe accused them of doing. O’Keefe alleged that the navigators advised the shill to misrepresent his income. In reality, they simply told him to report on the ObamaCare website the same amounts he reported to the IRS. It’s his responsibility to file his income taxes honestly. But the conclusions drawn in the video conceal that. That’s just one example of how creative editing can distort the true picture of what occurred.

Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54133 Nov 18, 2013

Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54134 Nov 18, 2013
Bill O'Reilly Pushes Latest Hit Piece by James O'Keefe's Project Veritas

The segment was even too much for Fox faux-liberal Juan Williams, who pointed out to O'Reilly that just catching a couple of trainees on video doesn't mean this is going on all across the system. O'Reilly just brushed off the complaints and went on to attack Williams for his belief that everyone should have access to affordable health care... even if they're lazy, having children of wedlock or not terribly smart. I can't imagine just who Billy boy was trying to stereotype there, can you?

Someone needs to tell him to get some new material, because the rehashing of Ronald Reagan's attacks on "lazy welfare queens" is getting tiresome, as is his support of O'Keefe and his drummed up "scandals."


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