During our elections, it’s just an accepted thing that the politicians will peacock. They will bluster and sling some mud. It’s just what happens. But, after the election, there is an expectation that politics should be put to the side for the sake of the country and our elected officials will work together for the greater good.
Of course, that expectation often goes unmet, as seen during President Obama’s presidency with Republicans blocking every move.
Trump has taken this lack of diplomacy to a whole new level. This morning he celebrated (with a tweet) the fact that millions of Americans will be losing their health insurance coverage:
The “Unaffordable” Care Act will soon be history!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 13, 2017
With the repeal of the Affordable Care Act on the horizon, but no true replacement in sight, millions of Americans are at risk of losing health insurance. People with pre-existing conditions, adult children still on their parents’ policies, individuals who don’t qualify for Medicaid – all who may find themselves uninsured, yet again. And, that lack of insurance will cost many their lives.
Yeah, that totally sounds like something the soon-to-be President of the United States should celebrate.
People on Twitter aren’t letting the Commander-in-Tweet off the hook for taking such a preposterous stance.
@realDonaldTrump Make American Graves Again!
— Matt Haig (@matthaig1) January 13, 2017
@realDonaldTrump 3,000 Americans will die Every. Single. Month because of the REPEAL
All so that rich people like TRUMP can get a tax cut.
— Sharika Soal (@LadyThriller69) January 13, 2017
So clever. . .
— Jay K. Cagatay (@jayktweets) January 13, 2017
@realDonaldTrump To be replaced with the “No healthcare for twenty million people” Act, which somehow you think is better.
— Tom Coates (@tomcoates) January 13, 2017
In November, a week before the election and inspired by a Trump Tweet, I wrote about Trump’s plan that he outlined on his website. Now seems as good of a time as ever to give a reminder of what Lord Cheeto thinks will make healthcare affordable. (It won’t.)
RELATED: Trump’s CNN Rage Continues With A Thursday Morning Tweet Any Teenage Bully Would Be Proud Of
While we don’t normally reprint excerpts from our previous posts, this seems like as the perfect opportunity to bring this one back.
So, what is Trump’s plan?
Point #1: “On day one of the Trump Administration,” Trump will be demanding that Congress issue a “full repeal” of Obamacare. Then, as millions of Americans sit without health insurance, they will fret and stew over creating a horrific healthcare system based on profit, profit, profit. No really.
Point #2: Trump plans to “modify existing law that inhibits the sale of health insurance across state lines.”
This has been a Republican talking point for years. It is claimed that regulations on the insurance industry prevent free-market competition between states. However, those barriers aren’t as much regulatory as they are something bigger. There is a reason why a plan based out of Alabama may not be the best plan for someone living in Connecticut.
Merrill Matthews who is a resident scholar at the Institute for Policy Innovation told the New York Times:
I’ve tried for 10 years to explain this to Republicans; it is a big problem. Just because a good affordable policy is available in another state doesn’t mean that I would be able to get the network of physicians and the good prices that are available in that other state.
So, Trump’s idea of “allowing full competition in this market [will make] insurance costs will go down and consumer satisfaction will go up” is a farce. Two things will happen. 1. Most insurance companies won’t spend the money and resources that are required to make that happen. And, 2. even if they did, people would be purchasing unusable policies because they would be unable to find in-network physicians and facilities for care.
Who would benefit from such an idea? The insurance companies who know they have no network physicians in areas but still sell their policies to consumers there anyway. Premiums paid for no care means more big money for insurers.
Point #3: “Allow individuals to fully deduct health insurance premium payments from their tax returns under the current tax system.”
Ok, that doesn’t sound too bad, honestly. However, if the federal government is going to fully fund everyone’s health insurance, shouldn’t we just jump right to single payer so we can get the absolute best price for our tax dollars?
Oh wait, of course not. That might dip into the pockets of the billionaires who own the insurance companies. So, this idea is really just to continue the system of making the rich richer on the backs of the middle class who actually pay federal income tax.
Point #4: “Allow individuals to use Health Savings Accounts (HSAs). Contributions into HSAs should be tax-free and should be allowed to accumulate. These accounts would become part of the estate of the individual and could be passed on to heirs without fear of any death penalty.”
The only individuals who would have leftover money in HSAs to include in an estate (without tax penalty) would be the wealthy. So, in addition to making a complete mockery of our healthcare system in America with a plan that favors the exploitation of poor people through letting insurance companies have their way with them, Trump’s plan also creates a new tax haven for rich people to pass down their wealth.
Point #5: “Require price transparency from all healthcare providers, especially doctors and healthcare organizations like clinics and hospitals. Individuals should be able to shop to find the best prices for procedures, exams or any other medical-related procedure.”
This sounds great in theory, however, we aren’t talking about buy one, get one free canned peaches at the grocery store. We are talking about people’s health. If a patient bases the care they receive solely on price, they may be in for a rude awakening when it comes to the consequences of such a decision. The Wall Street Journal reports:
A recent paper in the Journal of Patient Safety found that 97% of surveyed consumers preferred hospitals with the highest grades for safety, and that pricing, although relevant, was less important to them.
The Journal also reports that reporting such prices, “without good quality ratings, prices become a proxy for quality, and can drive costs upward.” They also point out that “hazards, misdiagnoses, inappropriate referrals for the wrong service, errors, and infections” can cost patients “big time.”
Point #6: Is basically blocking federal dollars that go to Medicaid in the form of grants. So poor states (where most of Lord Cheeto’s supporters reside) it sucks to be you. It’s going to cost you more.
And, speaking of costing patients, big time, the next point is downright frightening.
Point #7: “Remove barriers to entry into free markets for drug providers that offer safe, reliable and cheaper products. Congress will need the courage to step away from the special interests and do what is right for America. Though the pharmaceutical industry is in the private sector, drug companies provide a public service. Allowing consumers access to imported, safe and dependable drugs from overseas will bring more options to consumers.”
Pills from China for all! That has worked out so well for our pets and their food, this won’t have any impact on quality – I’m sure.
When all of that was originally written in November, we were still holding out hope that we wouldn’t be facing the reality of a President Donald Trump.
Now it’s real. Now our healthcare is threatened. And, all the future President can do is gloat on Twitter.
Yeah, we’re not f*cked or anything.