The GOP House leadership released their “Obamacare Repeal-Replace”/ healthcare reform bill earlier this week.
At this point, only Paul Ryan and Sean Spicer seem to really like it. A ton of Republicans have lined up against it, for various and sundry reasons. Some say it doesn’t go far enough. Others, say it goes too far. So far, Democrats have been totally against it.
The bill is short, just 60 pages, and moving though the House Committee system fast.
Because of its brevity, there’s been plenty of time for people to dissect the impact. Here are a couple of examples:
These 3 Powerful Groups Are Slamming the GOP’s Obamacare Replacement Plan – Fortune
What The Obamacare Replacement Bill Means Depends On How You Get Your Coverage – 538
The American Health Care Act: the Republicans’ bill to replace Obamacare, explained – Vox
And my personal favorite:
GOP’s health care tax swindle: Tax cuts for the rich financed by taking coverage from everyone else – Salon
Which goes back to something I wrote on twitter Tuesday night. Here’s a storify of it:
What the GOP Really hates isn’t Obamacare, It’s taxes on the Wealthy
Now, if you didn’t make it all the way down to the end of that Storify, the headline above is the main point.
The thing the GOP hates about “Obamacare” is really two-fold: the taxes on the wealthy and the “mandates” that supposedly remove “choice”. Those mandates run the gambit from minimum coverage to expansion, to mandates on employers and how they cover their employees, yada, yada, yada.
They hate that shit because it raises the cost for them to get the only thing they really wanted in the first place for doing all this cool stuff, a tax break.
So Speaker Ryan and his buddies attacked the taxes and don’t give a shit about who it hurts in the process, because they got theirs. They’ll get to keep theirs too, as long as they deliver a tax cut to the people who fund their campaigns, even at the expense of the people who vote for them.
Taxes is always what this has been about. This is how the GOP has operated for the better part of 30 years.
Sure, you get cultural/identity conservatism with your corporate cronyism, which some people are fine with. But I feel pretty confident that if the people, in largely rural areas, understood the reason they’ll die on the 2 hour ride to the hospital after a catastrophic heart attack is that GOP cronyism, maybe they’d think twice before voting for these characters.
America Needs real “Healthcare Reform”
But lets get one thing clear: Obamacare is not a “healthcare plan” its a framework for insurance access.
Insurance access reform is a subsidy of what we already had…a system that cost too much and that people hated long before Obama became President.
Insurance Access Reform doesn’t work because insurance companies are still in control. They will always have the best interest of their shareholders at heart over policyholders. This was the key flaw of Obamacare.
Over time, insurers built a narrative that Obamacare was broken by reducing choices in specific areas that helped their bottom line. They did this in hopes of raising prices, and being able to capture even more federal money by manipulating the market.
But America’s primary need isn’t insurance access reform…America needs a “Healthcare plan”.
We need a real plan that Provides care for all…period. That’s a plan that will put us in the top 10 of industrialized countries.
Healthcare reform can’t be some block-granted backwoods bullshit. States consistently twist block grants into bludgeon against the working poor. Case in point: Medicaid all over the south.
Any healthcare reform can’t have all the weird bullshit that’s been baked into Medicare over the past two decades. Like Repeal/Replace, Medicare reform has been more about breaking a promise to seniors to cut taxes for the wealthy.
True healthcare reform protects hospitals and providers from wondering if and how much they will be paid for their services. It also protects people who need care from getting caught in a debt trap when something bad happens to them. Despite Obamacare, thousands of Americans are still drowning in debt from medical care.
American needs something completely different. Not health insurance reform, but a reform of the way we provide healthcare.
We need healthcare provided to people at no cost to them. Health insurance is moot in this scenario, except for people who want “extra” coverage.
This healthcare must cover the normal basic shit: normal doctor’s visits, dental, and vision. It should cover emergency care and transportation if its really an emergency.
This healthcare should be about making people healthy, not patching up their illnesses.
It will be expensive, especially as we deal with the decades of God-awful healthcare policy in the US that made our people, fatter, less mobile, sicker, and with more bizarre drug-induced side effects than you can shake a stick at.
That’s what America Needs. Not another GOP branded® Shit Sandwich…which, by the way, is all those guys sell.