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Reactions mixed, volatile on health care reform

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  • A voice of Reason Salt Lake City, UT
    June 29, 2012 6:03 p.m.

    Azrods, Thanks! I was in a hurry earlier and completely missed your comment.

    "When will the hard ... look for plan B." I couldn't agree more with that whole bit.

    Blue,

    If you desire people to only pay their own way, yes our system is failing at that. Socialism is a step further down that road though. My concern isn't financial accountability (though important) but agency.

    Lane Myer,

    I'm glad you asked that, it's an important point. I did address it though- "We shouldn't have to defend against our own government being oppressive. This isn't exactly a violent issue so while I will argue... I'll have to sit back and 'take it'... simply because I am legally obligated to. But eventually I worry that this country will get so polarized in our desire to protect freedom that eventually I fear we may face another civil war."

    My fear is that more threats to agency will provoke violence; I don't advocate that violence even when it is sometimes justified in severe situations. I believe a better people would be more passive than that. I support the law and being subject as commanded, completely.

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    June 29, 2012 3:16 p.m.

    reader1234 said:
    My company sent out an email yesterday stating that because of the ruling that they are now thinking of dropping our health coverage. We will be forced onto the government exchanges. Please someone explain to me how my situation has now improved? When I told the news to my wife she started crying. I work with 1500 people. They all lost their health insurance yesterday.

    Sounds like your boss was just looking for an excuse as many Mitt types are looking only at their bottom line.
    This is a huge part of the problem, Every year we lose vacation and sick days even though neither has ever been abused, I'm seldom able to take all of my vacation 12 days after 15 years, Yep many Utah Employers are greedy little people who call you brother and talk like your family, right up till they let you go so a share holder can make a couple more dollars.

  • morganh Orem, Utah
    June 29, 2012 1:56 p.m.

    Nanci Pelosi was quoted as saying" We have to pass this so we know what's in it". The Supreme Court has now told us that the individual mandate is a tax. Didn't Obama in a news conference earlier this year say that he will not raise taxes one dime on any Americans who make less than $250,000.00.? There is also 20 other taxes in this bill as well as new federal oversight committees. These committees will have to be funded so I guess that is what all the taxes will do. Also we can't forget that this bill is called "Obamacare", but the real creators of it were progressive unions such as SEIU who were also behind OWS. Wow what a coincidence!! These people like Obama have decided that free-market capitalism should be replaced by socialism and a single payer health reform which will be run by you guessed it the Federal Government. The "Affordable Heathcare Tax" stifles the economy. Obama must go!!

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    June 29, 2012 12:51 p.m.

    re:metamoracoug

    That was the cost of the emergency appendectomy my son had. Luckily he had insurance so he paid significantly less.

    Researchers at the University of California at San Francisco, whose findings were published in the journal Archives of Internal Medicine found that after reviewing charges from more than 19,000 patients, the researchers found that the cost for treatment of uncomplicated appendicitis ranged from $1,529 to a whopping $182,955. (ABC April 2012)

    So, what are patients going to do? Call around each hospital to comparison shop regarding the cost of treatment? How does that work for emergencies? BTW, hospitals don't have set rates, you won't be able to get a quote. Rates depend on insurance coverage/company, insurance plan specifics etc. If you didn't have insurance you would be on the hook for the full $40k. If you have insurance you may pay only $1k. Hospitals charge the uninsured more than the insured.

  • metamoracoug metamora, IL
    June 29, 2012 11:32 a.m.

    Truthseeker: I work in a small private medical practice. If you are paying $40K for an uncomplicated appendectomy, you're being ripped off. It's outpatient surgery and should cost less than 10K. I am covered medically up to $300K if I get in an auto accident -- which is the most likely reason anyone in my family would go to the hospital. And that $66K savings? I used it to buy property and build a second home -- now valued at $200K. If it were necessary, yes, I could part with it and cover medical expenses for cancer.

    This is my fourth post, so let me say that ACA does nothing to actually reduce the cost of medical care for anyone. It also does nothing to improve medical care or increase personal responsibility for health or healthcare. As a nation, we have the worst health habits of any industrialized nation. And until that changes, until there is tort reform, until each INSURED individual willingly pays his/her co-payment/co-insurance/deductible (in 12 years our office has written off 10s of thousands unpaid co-insurance/co-payment/deductibles), then no legislation will be helpful.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    June 29, 2012 11:09 a.m.

    Seething anger, knickers atwist everywhere...this is fine political drama.

  • NT Springville, UT
    June 29, 2012 10:35 a.m.

    @UtahBlueDevil

    "When 20 something uninsured Joe/Jane extreme skier goes to the hospital emergency room for an injury, you and I pick up that bill, because they don't want to spend their money on insurance."

    Yes, we all pick up the cost - true.

    I think that those who believe that this ACA will remedy this kind of scenario are being naive. Do you seriously think that Joe/Jane skier is now going to pay for insurance? Or, will they instead pay the penalty, oops, I mean TAX?

    Do you think that all of the illegals (and yes, there are MANY MANY) who are working all the angles to get their healthcare at no cost to them (and thus paid by you and I) are going to change anything?

    I see 30 million new recipients of healthcare insurance but I do not believe for a moment that there will be 30 million new $$ contributors, do you? Then do the math. Our costs - thanks to this ACA - are only going up. And, our freedoms are continue to be infringed.

  • metamoracoug metamora, IL
    June 29, 2012 10:29 a.m.

    utealumni: I'm glad you have it too. And I'm glad that over the past 12 years I haven't.

  • NT Springville, UT
    June 29, 2012 10:25 a.m.

    @CHS 85
    "Is it possible or Utahns to grow up and call it the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act instead of Obamacare? We're all adults, we can handle the proper names for things."

    I heard this term from national and outside sources LONG before I heard it fall from the lips of any UTAHN. We cannot claim to have coined the term "OBamacare." But, if it offends you to hear it said like that, call it what you want. The adults with whom I associate (responsible, hardworking, accountable, freedom-loving) are now calling it "ObamaTAX" based on the high court's decision. And when I say "high" I say it with intended ambiguity. :)

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    June 29, 2012 10:09 a.m.

    Re:metamoracoug

    So do you have an extra $40k stashed away for a uncomplicated appendectomy? What if someone on the freeway makes an unsafe lane change and puts you in the hospital with major injuries? Can your household budget absorb those costs or $2000mon for chemo drugs?

    You remind me of a plaintiff in the court case against ACA. Mary Brown, uninsured, filed for bankruptcy recently and among her unpaid bills was $4500 for medical care.

  • ute alumni Tengoku, UT
    June 29, 2012 9:27 a.m.

    metamoracoug
    I've always had health insurance. We are a family of six. I have been healthy, never in a hospital and now have leukemia. glad I have insurance.

  • metamoracoug metamora, IL
    June 29, 2012 9:14 a.m.

    Lane Meyer: There is always an appropriate time for civil disobedience. If ever there was a time to go Gandhi on the government, this would be it.

    Utahbluedevil: I am uninsured and neither you nor anyone else has ever paid a penny for my healthcare costs because: 1) my family works diligently to maintain good health through exercise and proper eating; 2) I pay all my medical bills out of pocket (presently we are a family of 4 and average cost annually is about $4500 -- a savings over the past 12 years of AT LEAST $66K had we been being out of pocket for insurance coverage -- probably more than that amount because we have 3 adult children who would also have been covered during that time).

  • reader1234 South Jordan, UT
    June 29, 2012 8:59 a.m.

    My company sent out an email yesterday stating that because of the ruling that they are now thinking of dropping our health coverage. We will be forced onto the government exchanges. Please someone explain to me how my situation has now improved? When I told the news to my wife she started crying. I work with 1500 people. They all lost their health insurance yesterday.

  • Lane Myer Salt Lake City, UT
    June 29, 2012 8:38 a.m.

    A voice of Reason
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Well if the conservative half of the country refuses to pay it and refuses to pay Obama's fines it won't be good for liberals will it?

    ------------------

    This won't happen in Utah because: "We believe in being subject to Kings, Magistrates, Rulers and in OBEYING, HONORING AND SUSTAINING the law." ACA is now the law. Don't like it, get it changed, but we will obey it until there is a new law, right?

  • Hemlock Salt Lake City, UT
    June 29, 2012 8:30 a.m.

    These are great benefits until you consider that we borrow 40% of it and pass the debt on to our children. It's a great legacy we are leaving them. Our schools should start teaching Greek as the language of choice.

  • metamoracoug metamora, IL
    June 29, 2012 8:23 a.m.

    CHS85: "affordable care act" is a misnomer -- If I choose to get insurance, it will cost me about $10K per annum. If I choose to not get insured, it will cost me that penalty prescribed by the act. Either way it is a significant amount of money out of my pocket that I did not previously have to spend. It is not affordable for me.

    From Redneck lefty: "The fact is, all of us already do pay for it. But we pay for it in extremely wasteful and inefficient ways. We pay for an expensive emergency room visit for pneumonia instead of a cheap office visit for a chest cold. We pay for invasive care instead of preventative care. We all pay for it, because hospitals must treat people who cannot pay, and they have to make up the difference by charging the rest of us more."

    And it's your opinion that this act will change the situation you describe? In IL an increasing number of physicians don't except Medicaid because it pays so little.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    June 29, 2012 8:21 a.m.

    Here is the problem. Back in 2004, way before this whole argument started, the Kaiser Foundation did a report on the cost of healthcare to uninsured Americans. At that time the cost was about 124 Billion dollars. Add to that 40+ Billion in unreimbursed care was taken directly to the bottom line of hospitals, and you see the problem we have.

    There is no "free" healthcare for the uninsured. That cost gets picked up by those who do have insurance. When someone has a pre-existing condition that prevents them from getting insurance, and they have to see a doctor, it is you and I who pick up that bill. The insurance companies push that risk off to the care givers and tax payers. That cost doesn't go away.

    When 20 something uninsured Joe/Jane extreme skier goes to the hospital emergency room for an injury, you and I pick up that bill, because they don't want to spend their money on insurance.

    The system is full of payment loopholes. It needs to be fixed. If mandating insurance isn't the answer so we don't have to cary their cost, I want to know what is.

  • Blue Salt Lake City, UT
    June 29, 2012 8:12 a.m.

    AVOR: "There are people of different cultural backgrounds, faiths, non-faiths, and so on in this country that do not believe in participating in any form of Healthcare. "

    But they do participate.

    When their kids get sick or have accidents they go to the emergency room, we pay those costs.

    When they go on disability because they didn't take care of their health, we pay those costs.

    When they die because they didn't get medical check-ups that could have spotted their cancer at an early stage and their families end up on welfare, we pay those costs.

    Insurance works best and costs are lowest when _everyone_ is insured. No "free riders."

    Most Americans _like_ the idea of not allowing insurance companies to deny coverage because of pre-existing conditions.

    Most Americans _like_ keeping their kids on their policies until they're 26.

    Asked about individual sections of the PPACA, most Americans are all in favor of them. It's only when you guys call it "Obamacare" that attitudes shift.

  • Aggielove Cache county, USA
    June 29, 2012 7:46 a.m.

    This was the kiss of death for Obama.
    Young dems don't won't to be forced to spend there money on health care.
    Neither do baby boomers.
    I'm trying to be positive.
    Big health care money, is much more at risk than hollywoods elites here.
    Do the math, and see big money hammer Obama out of office.

  • A voice of Reason Salt Lake City, UT
    June 29, 2012 6:40 a.m.

    Owen,

    Roads and taxes are unavoidably something that need to be payed for. Requiring you to pay taxes in order to reap the benefits of government is something government does have to do. To clarify my position, I am not against that. Although I am against forcing people. If you don't want to pay taxes? Fine, I won't force you. But I also won't give you any of those benefits. When you are mugged in an alley, no cops to protect you. No driving, etc.

    There are people of different cultural backgrounds, faiths, non-faiths, and so on in this country that do not believe in participating in any form of Healthcare. While I disagree with them, I am not justified in forcing them to participate or give up their property for something that is not necessary for government and society to function. Roads, taxes, police, fire dept's, etc are all necessary, but if someone doesn't want their benefits I won't be forcing them to pay for it as long as they can't use them.

    The difference is obvious and didn't need this explanation. We all know that force is wrong!

  • Stephen Kent Ehat Lindon, UT
    June 29, 2012 2:41 a.m.

    As in 2000, the Supreme Court of the United States has decided the presidential election. And guess what? Romney wins.

    And the decision this time comes prior to the vote, rather than afterwards.

    Here's how.

    As a matter of final, binding, and unalterable Supreme Court precedent, ObamaCare is funded not by a mandate enforced by a "penalty," but, instead, a mandate enforced by a "tax."

    The 2010 election becomes the template for the 2012 election. Only this time on steroids. And President Obama will be unable to anything about it.

    And yet, because it is a Supreme Court opinion that, in the end, merely construes a statute (and otherwise protects the Commerce Clause), when the people turn against the statute, those who enacted it and called it "not a tax" but supported it, lose on November 6, and the statute falls in the political branch come 2013.

    Tuesday, March 27, 2012 may well be the day we all look back to as the day Romney won the Presidency. What happened that day? The Solicitor General urged the Court to conclude, as a final, last ditch argument, that ObamaCare's funding mechanism can be construed as a tax.

  • RedneckLefty St. George, UT
    June 28, 2012 11:47 p.m.

    AZRods asked: "who is going to pay for the premiums for those who can't afford it? "

    The fact is, all of us already do pay for it. But we pay for it in extremely wasteful and inefficient ways. We pay for an expensive emergency room visit for pneumonia instead of a cheap office visit for a chest cold. We pay for invasive care instead of preventative care. We all pay for it, because hospitals must treat people who cannot pay, and they have to make up the difference by charging the rest of us more.

    Or, do you want to live in a country where people with no money and no insurance die on the sidewalk outside the emergency room?

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    June 28, 2012 10:36 p.m.

    re:Voice
    Again:
    What is the Republican plan?

    You do have the right not to participate. However, all choices involve consequences.

    "If you don't want to buy insurance, then you have to help pay for the cost of the state picking up your bill, because under federal law if someone doesn't have insurance, then we have to care for them in the hospitals, give them free care. So we said, no more, no more free riders. We are insisting on personal responsibility. Either get the insurance or help pay for your care."
    Mitt Romney

    Republican Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah, a former Chairman of the Judiciary Committee, and former Republican Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, a heart surgeon, have supported the individual mandate. Republican Senator Charles Grassley of Iowa and business groups like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Business Round Table have also supported the individual mandate and a bill co-sponsored by Republican Senator Bob Bennett and touted as the Republican alternative to health care reform contained an individual mandate.

  • AZRods Maricopa, AZ
    June 28, 2012 10:30 p.m.

    Voice, you are exactly correct. And I might add or ask those who are pounding on their chests over the so called victory...who is going to pay for the premiums for those who can't afford it? The millions on welfare? Those who can make more on government benefits than working at a less than acceptable job so they just stay home.
    The cost of maintaining this program will only add to bankrupt this country.
    This decision only puts the American citizens in more of a "needy" position at the mercy of "THE GOVERNMENT".
    When will the hard working citizens get tired of pulling the wagon? I think that day is
    fast approaching.
    Time to look for plan B.

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    June 28, 2012 10:30 p.m.

    Anyone who likes the idea that the government (we the people) can force (decide) to pay for something (necessary for the good of society - like roads, schools, armies and healthcare) is as American as it gets.

  • RedneckLefty St. George, UT
    June 28, 2012 10:28 p.m.

    CHS 85: Oh, I'm perfectly fine calling it Obamacare. I don't mind Obama getting credit, for generations, for:

    -making insurance available to children with preexisting conditions
    -making insurance exchanges available to adults with preexisting conditions
    -closing the Medicare Prescription Drug donut hole
    -ending annual coverage caps
    -ending lifetime coverage caps
    -allowing college students to stay on their parents' insurance
    -limiting the percentage of my premium my insurance company can soak up in profits and overhead

    But if you don't like the individual mandate, I don't mind if you keep calling that part Romneycare.

  • CHS 85 Sandy, UT
    June 28, 2012 10:21 p.m.

    Is it possible or Utahns to grow up and call it the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act instead of Obamacare? We're all adults, we can handle the proper names for things.

  • A voice of Reason Salt Lake City, UT
    June 28, 2012 10:11 p.m.

    Truthseeker,

    Your idea of due process is not accurate or lawful. Due process is something we EACH individually get. Judicial review and due process are not the same thing. The Supreme Court exercised judicial review in considering the constitutionality of forcing people to pay for Healthcare, even if their personal beliefs conflict with it (thereby weakening if not abandoning the first amendment).

    According to our constitution, we are all entitled to due process WHEREBY we must receive and are legally entitled to receive adequate notice, a hearing, and a neutral judge BEFORE our rights or property is taken from us by force. I believe I have the right to NOT participate and before a government forces me I have a right for my case to be heard. Now, there is no case. No one has an individual case for their own property because the government rules over all of us.

    Anyone who likes the idea that the government can force us to pay for something is under a mentality that I firmly believe to be as un-American as it gets. It will only lead to an evil future where we have no protections for our basic free rights.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    June 28, 2012 10:02 p.m.

    Obama thinks everybody can afford health insurance. Yes, and some families would pay over a thousand per month.

    And they say Mitt Romney is out of touch with people?

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    June 28, 2012 9:44 p.m.

    re;Voice
    "No due process, no nothing."

    Really?
    Americans (you) voted.
    Congress passed legislation.
    Courts heard challenges.
    Supreme Court ruled.

    Like it or not, that is due process under the American system.

    Is it better to return to the system where medical care for the uninsured is "cost-shifted" to the insured?
    What is the Republican plan?
    Oh yeah.
    It was Romneycare, the blue-print for ACA.
    Thanks Mitt!

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    June 28, 2012 9:35 p.m.

    We're doing fine. Hyperbole, on the other hand, had a great day.

  • A voice of Reason Salt Lake City, UT
    June 28, 2012 8:57 p.m.

    Well if the conservative half of the country refuses to pay it and refuses to pay Obama's fines it won't be good for liberals will it?

    The more our government tries to take away our freedoms, the more we'll need and start to defend ourselves. We shouldn't have to defend against our own government being oppressive. This isn't exactly a violent issue so while I will argue constantly against it, I'll have to sit back and 'take it' from the liberal powers that be simply because I am legally obligated to. But eventually I worry that this country will get so polarized in our desire to protect freedom that eventually I fear we may face another civil war. There are threats in this world and they seem great. But I fear the future of this nation more than I do North Korea or anyone else.

    R.I.P. the right to control property being taken away. No due process, no nothing. The government simply takes our property because they choose what we pay for instead of ourselves now.

    R.I.P. A rational Supreme court (Oh wait, that idea died a LONG time ago)

  • New Yorker Pleasant Grove, UT
    June 28, 2012 8:07 p.m.

    I'm well pleased with the decision. Health care reform is still on the table! Congress will just have to deal with it. Politicians of all persuasions have avoided getting health care reform on the table for decades. Now no one can avoid making it into what we, as a nation (not a faction), want it to be.

    The same needs to be done for immigration reform. Let's keep at these slippery politicians until they produce a comprehensive bill. Fine tuning can come later. First we need to get these self-serving politicians off the dime with an up or down vote on a comprehensive immigration bill.

  • Dixie Dan Saint George, UT
    June 28, 2012 7:02 p.m.

    I was surprised that we have not heard from Utah's Constitutional expert, Carl Wimmer, on this subject. He, along with Senators Mike Lee & Oren Hatch, have consistently told all Utah residents that the ACA was unconstitutional. How could they so wrong?