By Mike Wilcox, Publisher
If William Shakespeare were alive today who would probably agree with me. The hysteria over the U.S. House of Representatives passage of an Obamacare replacement is “Much ado about nothing.”
I say that because the passage of the House bill is only one of many progressions a bill must follow before it becomes the law of the land. If we still taught civics in high school, many of us would know that the proposed dismantling of Obamacare must now go to the Senate, where members are saying they aren’t going to even entertain the House bill, but instead create their own. If that is the case the Senate will vote on the new version and if it passes a conference committee made up of Senate and House members will attempt to add and takeaway a number of amendments. If that works, the bill will finally be passed on to the president. The process could take months and even years in some cases.
But if you listen to the major television networks and people that are featured on the news and social media, you would think Obamacare is dead. Even Trump and his Republican cohorts held a celebratory press conference in the Rose Garden declaring victory. I don’t get it.
I harken back to my high school days. Civics was one of my favorite classes. It was taught by a roly poly self-proclaimed tough guy, Lowell Frisch. His claim to fame was his collection of handmade paddles that he proudly hung on his classroom wall and wasn’t afraid to use one of them when a student was misbehaving.
Frisch taught me a lot of what I know about government. It was augmented with internship stints at the state capitol and in the House of Representatives in Washington D.C. I think I have a good grasp as to what goes on, but students growing up in recent years- I think not. Civics is no longer taught and how government works is no longer important to teach, so say many of our educators.
When I see a woman crying because she thinks she is going to die because when Obamacare is replaced she will no longer be able to afford her prescription, I can only shake my head. None of us, and I mean no one, knows what the Obamacare replacement will be like, or if there even will be a replacement.
Personally I have struggled with Obamacare. A few year’s back I was fined over $7,000 because at the time I signed up I was told I would have to pay a certain amount monthly. Come to find out, I didn’t qualify for that lower amount, so the government forced me to pay the difference from what I should have paid.
Now I’m on a non-qualified plan which means I am subject to another penalty each year because I’m not utilizing Obamacare. My plan which costs nearly a $1000 a month for my wife and I, offers very little in benefits and comes with a very high deductible, so unless we are at the doctor’s every other day it is useless.
Not so for a friend of mine who I swear spends more time in the hospital than at home. Because of her income, she has all the wonderful benefits of Obamacare and more. She is addicted to hospital care- let’s face it they wait on you, provide decent meals and a comfortable bed to sleep in. She doesn’t pay a nickel. Her health insurance pays it all.
The state of American healthcare is at a crisis point. In my opinion everyone is taking advantage of the system- patients, healthcare providers, pharmaceutical companies and insurance carriers are doing what they can to rape the system.
I’m certainly not fond of what the House Republicans passed as a replacement. No one knows if its better or worse than Obamacare. But Civics tells us that a machete will soon be applied to the House version and what passes the Senate will be very different. Let’s stop the hysteria and pray that our lawmakers can get it right.