Whether we like it or not, a historic event occured earlier today when President Barack Obama signed a nearly $1 trillion health care overhaul. Friends and family have been calling me to talk about their thoughts/hear my opinions. It has been interesting to hear some of the misconceptions. In one conversation alone, a friend asked me what I thought about the fact that we would have to pay for people’s abortions (not true – health plans aren’t required to cover abortions); that they heard the government would now get to choose whether or not the elderly would stay on life support (I don’t know where that one came from.); that there would be no more private insurance (not true; people can keep their coverage; it’s the people who don’t have coverage that can get it through state-based exchanges); etc. Honestly, I had no answers during the conversation. There has been so much bitter fighting around this issue and so many things changed from the beginning to the end, that I really didn’t know what was a part of it! That’s why I did my own research. In brief, here’s what I especially like, don’t like and just find weird about the plan:
-I like that under this plan every U.S. citizen will have the right to insurance coverage. I believe that insurance should be a right, not a privilege.
-As a mom, the thing that I like the most about the plan is that it prevents insurance companies from denying coverage to children because of pre-existing conditions and from canceling policies because someone gets sick. It is already hard enough emotionally for parents who have sick kids. They should not have to worry about excessive medical fees. Even with insurance, medical bills can be exorbitant so whatever relief parents can get…I’m all for it.
-I’m not too excited about the increase in taxes on investment income and on wages of “high income” people. Personally, I believe that everyone should be taxed on the same scale across the board (and just not be able to find legal loopholes to wiggle out of paying their fair share!).
-I’m also not that keen on employer responsibility (for companies with 51+ employees) for worker coverage subsidies. For some reason, I still think of companies with less than 100 employees as small businesses. I have “a thing” for supporting smal businesses, so I really hope that this does not bring an unbearable burden on such companies.
-This isn’t something that I really care about either way, but I just found it weird that $2.7 billion of the funds to pay for this overhaul will come from a tax on indoor tanning services. All of the other ways to pay for it make logical sense to me. I just don’t get the tanning services connection. (If you do, please explain it to me.)
In any event, we will see if the Senate ends up approving the package. Either way, life will go on. Hopefully, the next thing that the country can “overhaul” is this poisonous political divide that has infected our country. No matter who “wins” or “loses”, we’re all Americans and we’re all in this together. Honestly, I’ve never seen anything like this outright political animosity in my lifetime. Although I am a “Pollyanna” by nature, I don’t think that people need to agree on everything politically, but I do think that it is important that people at least get their facts straight. A friend joked, “Please tell me that you don’t vote Republican.” My response, “I vote for whomever I feel best fits my political ideals. Many times it happens to be Democratic candidates, but sometimes it happens to be Republicans. I, for one, am not a “follow the party line” type of woman. I have my own mind and think/vote accordingly.” As a mom, that is how I want to raise my children…to think for themselves!
If you would like to see a more in-depth coverage of the proposed overhaul, you can read:
– A Look at Obama’s Health Care Overhaul Law (ABC News)
So, what do you think about the health care overhaul. Yay or nay? What do you consider to be the good, the bad (and the weird!)?