Posts Tagged ‘that

03
Jul
13

The Good That Is ObamaCare

Information is power. ObamaCare works and is here to stay, so go out into the world and educate people. 2014 is around the corner and we have to be our own news and become even more proactive. Don’t let the media, so called progressive experts or the GOP demoralize you. Even if you only inform one person about the fantastic awesomeness that is ObamaCare, you have created a ripple effect because that person will tell another and another and another. Nobody said implementation of ObamaCare would be easy; Medicare and Social Security had a rough ride initially, but now? Try to mess with them negatively and watch the backlash explode. I will keep on providing tools that will help you disseminate facts and stop the lies. :D

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RWJF: Traditionally, individuals considering leaving their job to strike out on their own have worried that they may be denied health insurance coverage because they have preexisting conditions, fear losing access to a trusted physician, or are unable to afford the premiums without an employer sharing the costs. The result is that some U.S. workers feel “job lock,” being tethered to their jobs and unable to leave, even if their skills and talents no longer match their position.

New research estimates that the number of self-employed Americans will be 1.5 million higher in 2014 because of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Beginning next year, access to high-quality, subsidized health insurance coverage will no longer be exclusively tied to employment, which could lead people to pursue their own businesses as self-employed entrepreneurs.

More here

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Denise Early: Around 900,000 people living in Arizona do not have health insurance. Over 90% of them will get help from Obamacare. 94% of uninsured people in Tucson will get help paying for their health insurance under Obamacare, according to Enroll America. Based on census data, 50%  of the uninsured in Tucson would qualify for expanded Medicaid. In Arizona, Medicaid is run by AHCCCS, pronounced “access” (Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System). 44% of uninsured Tucsonans would qualify for help with their health insurance premium.

More here

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The White House Blog: The Medicare Trustees reported some good news for seniors and taxpayers: The Medicare program will be solvent through 2026, nearly a decade longer than projected at the time of passage of the Affordable Care Act. This is 2 years longer than projected last year. Their annual report also shows that the long run actuarial deficit in the Hospital Insurance Trust Fund – a measure of its long-term fiscal health – has been cut by more than 70 percent since enactment of the health care law. The long-run Medicare deficit has fallen from 3.88 percent of taxable payroll in the 2009 Trustees Report to 1.11 percent in this report.

These long-run gains are matched by short-term relief: the Trustees also project that the Part B premium will not increase between 2013 and 2014, keeping out-of-pocket costs for beneficiaries down. Medicare cost growth has remained at historically low levels over the past three years even as new benefits for preventive care and prescription drugs have helped tens of millions of beneficiaries access care at lower cost. The law reduces prescription drug costs by closing the donut hole, a policy that has already saved more than 6 million seniors more than $700 each. And more than 32 million seniors have accessed a free preventive service under the law, helping them stay healthy and avoid future illness.

More here

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Obamacare-Bumper-Sticker2

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Ezra Klein and Evan Soltas: In 2009, the Congressional Budget Office predicted that a medium-level “silver” plan — which covers 70 percent of a beneficiary’s expected health costs — on the California health exchange would cost $5,200 annually. More recently, a report from the consulting firm Milliman predicted it would carry a $450 monthly premium. Yesterday, we got the real numbers. And they’re lower than anyone thought.

The way this competition can drive down rates is already evident in Oregon. There, one insurer came in with monthly premium costs in the $169 range, while other insurers asked to charge more than $400. But then, seeing  what their competitors were charging, two insurers came back to the state’s regulators and asked if they could refile at lower rates. Otherwise, they wouldn’t be competitive in the exchange. The Obama administration was ecstatic to see this: It’s exactly what they’re hoping will happen across the country.

More here

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USA TODAY: Market forces and an impetus to attract younger, healthier people into the insurance market will help keep health insurance premiums lower as the 2010 health care law takes effect on Jan. 1, industry analysts and insurance officials say.

“If they price too high, young people won’t buy insurance, and that’s going to hurt the companies,” said Jay Angoff, who led initial implementation of the law for HHS. “They need these people to come in. It’s an industry problem.”

More here

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Ezra Klein: Last week, California released early information on the rates insurers intend to charge on the new insurance marketplaces — known as “exchanges” — that the state is setting up under Obamacare. They were far lower than anyone expected. “This is a home run for consumers in every region of California,” crowed Peter Lee, director of the state’s exchanges. The Affordable Care Act’s critics saw it differently. Avik Roy, a conservative health writer at Forbes, said Lee was being “misleading” and that “Obamacare, in fact, will increase individual-market premiums in California by as much as 146 percent.” Obamacare, he said, would trigger “rate shock,” the jolt people feel when they see higher rates.  Roy got his 146 percent by heading to eHealthInsurance.com, running a search for insurance plans in California and comparing the cost of the cheapest plans to the cost of the plans being offered in the exchanges. That’s not just comparing apples to oranges. It’s comparing apples to oranges that the fruit guy may not even let you buy.

Obamacare-WeLove-Siign

Click to buy the plan and eventually you’ll have to answer pages and pages of questions about your health history. Ever had cancer? How about an ulcer? How about a headache? Do you feel sad when it rains?  Is there a history of cardiovascular disease in your family? Have you ever known anyone who had the flu? The actual cost of the plan will depend on how you answer those questions. According to HealthCare.gov, 14 percent of people who try to buy that plan are turned away outright. Another 12 percent are told they’ll have to pay more than $109.

Comparing the pre-underwriting price of this plan to those in Obamacare’s exchanges is ridiculous. The plans in Obamacare’s exchanges have to include those people. They can’t turn anyone away or jack up rates because of a history of arthritis or heart disease. They also have to offer insurance that meets a certain minimum standard. Under Obamacare, for instance, the out-of-pocket limit for someone making 100 to 200 percent of the poverty line is $1,983. Under the Value 4500, you could spend up to $9,500 before the out-of-pocket limit kicked in. Obamacare also has subsidies for people making up to four times the poverty line. The poor pay next to nothing. The rich pay full freight.

More here

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Sy Mukherjee: Golden State small businesses and their employees got some great news: two of the state’s largest insurers will have to give them over $36 million in insurance rebates because of an Obamacare consumer protection.

The health law forces insurers to spend at least 80 percent of the premiums they charge on paying for actual medical services, rather than administrative overhead or profits. That means more money for ordinary consumers — and less for profitable insurance companies.

The so-called “80/20 rule” put $1.5 billion back into Americans’ pockets in 2011 alone. The average rebate was $151 per family across all insurance markets, and in states where insurers blatantly gouged prices, average rebates topped a whopping $500 per family.

Now, the benefits for Californians with small business health plans are beginning to materialize. Blue Shield of California will be forced to pay back $24.5 million in rebates. Anthem Blue Cross will have to pay back another $12 million.

More here

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Tara Culp-Ressler: A new study focusing on low-income women in St. Louis, MO concludes that expanding access to free contraception — just as the health care reform law does through its provision to provide birth control without a co-pay — leads to significantly lower rates of unintended teen pregnancy and abortion. Researchers found that when women weren’t prohibited by cost, they chose more effective, long-lasting forms of birth control and experienced many fewer unintended pregnancies as a result.

More here

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ThinkProgress: Americans who bought individual health plans in 2012 saved $2.1 billion thanks to Obamacare consumer protections that limit how much insurers can profit off of Americans’ premiums, according to a new study by the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF). The vast majority of those savings stem from individual health plan providers lowering the premiums they charge Americans in an effort to comply with the reform law.

The Kaiser study comes shortly after several major California insurers announced that they would have to pay back $36 million to small businesses and their employees after charging them too much. Obamacare mandates that insurers on the individual market spend at least 80 percent of the premiums they charge on actual medical services, or reimburse the amount they overspent to their customers.

But insurers can avoid writing those checks after-the-fact if they just lower their premiums to begin with — and KFF’s study concludes that’s what many individual plan providers have been doing.

More here

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President Obama signing the Affordable Care Act into law on March 23rd, 2010.

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26
Jul
12

Rise and Shine

President Barack Obama steps off Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House on July 25

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Alex MacGillis (The New Republic): …. cynicism has regained the upper hand this week, in a big way, with the Republicans’ out-of-context trumpeting of a single, infelicitous line from Obama’s recent riff, echoing Elizabeth Warren, about the need for public investment to sustain economic growth….

…. There is actually a pretty good argument to be had over this riff — an argument that gets to the heart of what the 2012 election is about …. But Republicans aren’t engaging in that argument. Instead, they have plucked out the single line — “If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that” — which makes it sound like Obama’s ”that” refers to the business, not to the roads and bridges of the previous line…..

How has the press covered this? ….. Even Andrew Sullivan, this morning, essentially shrugged at the gambit, faulting Obama for having stumbled into the confused wording in the first place to produce his “biggest blunder yet”….

….. I’m genuinely perplexed that people who work with words for a living can be so blithe about the deliberate misuse of words to mislead. What are we in this business for if not to hold the people we cover to basic standards of context, rather than just scoring the marks left by the mistruths?

Full article here

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Charles P. Pierce: Senator McDreamy believes he’s found an acorn:

Sen. Scott Brown said Wednesday that President Barack Obama made his “you didn’t build that” comments after getting “bad advice from professor [Elizabeth] Warren.” “They’re almost verbatim,” Brown said on “Fox and Friends,” referring to a speech Warren gave last year. “And the president got bad advice from professor Warren, certainly. You’ll never hear me demonizing our job creators.”

…..  no, McDreamy, saying that the Romney campaign is lying their ass off about what he said is not the president “stepping back and correcting the record” — and undeniably true. For example, here in the Commonwealth (God save it!) we are blessed with a junior senator who benefitted early in life from the welfare benefits provided by other taxpayers that his family collected after his parents split, who attended a public high school financed by other taxpayers in Wakefield, who trained in the publicly financed Massachusetts National Guard, and who has been on the public payroll in one way or another since 1992.

You’re welcome, senator. Think nothing of it.

Full post here

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Ah, Willard is charming the British!

The UK Telegraph (right wing rag): Mitt Romney has questioned Britain’s preparedness to host the London 2012 Olympics and asked whether the country is genuinely willing to “celebrate” the Games.

….he told US television there were “disconcerting” signs about Britain’s readiness …. Romney questioned the enthusiasm of the British public. “Do they come together and celebrate the Olympic moment?” he asked. “That’s something which we only find out once the Games actually begin.”

…. The comments on the Olympics came after Mr Romney’s advisers told The Daily Telegraph that he would restore “Anglo-Saxon” understanding to the special relationship between the US and Britain…

…. However, Mr Romney will receive a lukewarm reception in London. He held brief talks with Ed Miliband, the Labour leader. In a gaffe of his own, Mr Romney referred to Mr Miliband as “Mr Leader”…..

…. Later on Thursday, Mr Romney is planning to hold a fundraiser at the Mandarin Oriental hotel in Knightsbridge. One of the hosts of the fundraiser, former Barclays CEO Bob Diamond, withdrew from the event after he resigned in the wake of the Libor scandal.

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Tony Blair very excited to meet Willard in London

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The UK Telegraph: Barclays told to stop fundraising for Mitt Romney

Barclays has been accused of fundraising for political candidates instead of working to rebuild the public’s trust in banks following the Libor-setting scandal.

Executives at Barclays have reportedly donated more than $1m (£645,000) to to US Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s election campaign.

They are set to hand over more this evening at fundraising dinner in a secret Mayfair location, where tickets cost between $50,000 and $75,000, according to the Guardian.

An early-day motion (EDM) signed by 11 MPs last week demanded the bank and its directors stop working to bolster Mr Romney’s election campaign and concentrate on repairing confidence in the banking system.

More here

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Morning everyone ;-)

24
Jul
12

The Games That Get Played….

24
Jul
12

Rise and Shine

LA Times: President Obama accused rival Mitt Romney of “knowingly twisting” his comments about American business, in what amounted to his most forceful response to more than a week of sustained attacks by Republicans over a sound bite the president’s campaign argued was taken out of context.

In remarks to a feisty audience at Oakland’s Fox Theater on Monday evening, Obama contended that Romney had misrepresented what he said this month when he spoke of the role government plays in supporting the growth of business. He said Romney’s response showed he fails to appreciate the best way to grow the economy in a balanced way.

…. “Earlier today Gov. Romney was at it again, knowingly twisting my words around to suggest that I don’t value small businesses,” he said …. “In politics we all tolerate a certain amount of spin. I understand these are the games that get played in political campaigns. But when folks omit entire sentences of what I said – they start splicing and dicing – you may have gone a little over the edge.”

More here

The Fox Theatre, Oakland

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Steve Benen: ….. Last September, Elizabeth Warren explained the role of public institutions in creating a society that allows American businesses to thrive. A video of the comments went viral, and soon after, President Obama echoed the sentiment.

Last week, Mitt Romney’s campaign, hoping that voters are fools, made the case that American businesses thrive on their own without public institutions, and to believe otherwise is to be “foreign” and hostile towards free enterprise…

….if Romney’s hysterical, right-wing argument had any merit at all, this should be fairly easy. Obama’s been in office for three-and-a-half years, and if the president were, in reality, actively opposed to the interests and needs of America’s private sector, the evidence should be overwhelming and undeniable.

And yet, it’s not. Romney – and now, Scott Brown – have to resort to garbage tactics that treat Americans voters like we’re idiots. Instead of presenting credible evidence to bolster absurd claims, Romney and Brown have to rely on out-of-context nonsense to make a case that their rivals believe in an agenda that’s pure fantasy.

If President Obama and Elizabeth Warren genuinely oppose the free market — they don’t, but if they did — why do Mitt Romney and Scott Brown have to lie?…

Full post here

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Boston Globe

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1:15: President Obama departs San Francisco en route Portland, Oregon

2:40: Arrives in Portland

4:50: Attends a campaign event at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland (Closed press)

** 7:10: Attends a campaign event at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland (Live coverage) **

8:05: Departs Portland en route Seattle, Washington

8:50: Arrives in Seattle

9:15: Attends a campaign event, private residence

11:15: Delivers remarks at a campaign event, private residence

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Morning everyone ;-)




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