Skip to main content

This week marks the third anniversary of the Affordable Care Act being signed into law, and the latest Kaiser Family Foundation poll shows that the majority of Americans still don't know what in the hell it does, and still think it does things it doesn't. And a plurality still doesn't like it.

Chart showing favorability of ACA over time since 2010.
The law hasn't gained in popularity, with 37 percent of respondents viewing it favorably and 40 percent unfavorably. They don't like it, even though they don't know what it does: 57 percent say they don't know enough about it to understand how it might affect their own health insurance. This is the ongoing challenge of the Obama administration: providing public education and, yes, public relations, to help ensure the success of the exchanges. Fully two-thirds of the group the law is intended to help the most—the uninsured and those making less than $40,000 a year are the ones who say they are least knowledgable about the law
Chart showing percentages of various groups' understanding of what's in the ACA
Finally, there's the large numbers of people who think the law does exactly what it doesn't. Almost 60 percent think the law has a public option; nearly half (47 percent) think it will provide government subsidies to undocumented immigrants to buy insurance; and, yes, 40 percent (and 35 percent of seniors) think it sets up government death panels (21 percent aren't sure on that one).

The bright side of this is that there are some very popular provisions of the bill that people don't yet know are in it. For example, tax credits to small businesses that offer health insurance, which 88 percent of respondents think is a great idea, but only 52 percent knew was in the law. Eighty-one percent of people think the Medicare donut hole should be closed, and only 46 percent knew it's in the law. The idea of a health insurance exchange is popular with 80 percent of respondents, but only 58 percent know they are coming. As these things come on line, the law will become more popular. But it won't happen without an organized, effective and well-publicized campaign by the administration.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  Ya know (36+ / 0-)

    It's really the job of the Administration and the democrats to inform everyone of the ACA provisions if for no other reason than to counteract the very visible GOP public relations against ACA.

    It's almost as if Obama and the Democrats are taking the public and the possibility that they'll eventually "get it" for granted.

    •  Cynic says, "Maybe it's because the admin DOES NOT (4+ / 0-)

      CARE about "health care," and could give a shit about the vast mass of taxpayers and "insureds" and "uninsureds" out here. It ain't even on the long-range radar... Too much attention to that stuff would distract from the Serious Business of Inward and Upward Wealth Transfer, and the planning for the mechanisms of control that will, if some have their way, eventually blanket the whole planet. Which, thanks to "our" approach, "all of the above," to consumption, might not be any place these folks would want to actually, you know, OWN and LIVE IN.

      Now let the Adminapologists please direct the rest of us to all the Serious Efforts the West Wing has made to Tell The Rest Of Us The Whole Story...

      "Is that all there is?" Peggy Lee.

      by jm214 on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:13:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Sorry, not buying the conspiracy crap this morning (9+ / 0-)

        The process was lengthy and quite evident. And it has cost the Democrats the 2010 elections. So quite a conspiracy there...

        A messy compromise, yes.

        Still better than the previous status quo, by light-years.

        Among other things, they have turned health insurance into a tightly control utility market, with rather modest limits on profit margins.

        Oh yeah, and its major funding? taxes on the rich:

        PPACA's provisions are funded by a variety of taxes and offsets. Major sources of new revenue include a much-broadened Medicare tax on incomes over $200,000 and $250,000, for individual and joint filers respectively, an annual fee on insurance providers, and a 40% excise tax on "Cadillac" insurance policies.
        "Upward transfer", my ass.
        •  That so called Cadillac tax (7+ / 0-)

          is a tax on working people, especially union members - not really a tax on the rich.

          Politics is the art of the possible, but that means you have to think about changing what is possible, not that you have to accept it in perpetuity. Notes on a Theory

          by David Kaib on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:48:33 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yes, but the rich tax is the bigger chunk. by far. (0+ / 0-)
          •  You are correct. And we shouldn't forget, unions (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Byrnt

            bargained the so-called Cadillac plans in lieu of their actual wages.  So, it is definitely a 'pay cut,' in a collective bargaining situation.  

            I'd say that it's not being touted by the Administration because they understand that while it may provide some degree of health care, it will also put a tremendous financial hardship on millions of low income Americans.

            As one 34-page policy analysis says:

            What this means is that those Americans with the least or no disposable income are faced in effect with a substantial pay cut.

            The author provides an example of a 35 year-old with a MAGI of $27,925. The out-of- pocket cost to this person of a Silver level plan (second least expensive) is $187.33 per month.  The coverage under the less expensive Sliver plan is only 70/30 coverage.

            This cost [of the health exchange premiums] is based on pre-tax income, that is, before income is reduced by payroll and income taxes.

            There goes the car payment or utility bill.

            The lives of millions of Americans will change drastically as they struggle with a new, large expense – particularly in an era of no jobs, low-paying jobs and rising cost of living.

            In the several years since the ACA passed, I've always expressed concern about the puny subsidies.  

            They aren't near large enough, and they should extend to folks considerably higher up the income scale than they do.  The cut off is definitely in 'working class'  territory.  

            I would prefer a public option plan, but would have less of a problem with the ACA, if it were to be appropriately and sufficiently subsidized.

            Oh, and there's ANOTHER glitch.

            Obamacare 'Glitch' Allows Some Families To Be Priced Out Of Health Insurance

            By RICARDO ALONSO-ZALDIVAR 01/30/13 09:55 PM ET EST AP

            WASHINGTON -- Some families could get priced out of health insurance due to what's being called a glitch in President Barack Obama's overhaul law. IRS regulations issued Wednesday failed to fix the problem as liberal backers of the president's plan had hoped.

            As a result, some families that can't afford the employer coverage that they are offered on the job will not be able to get financial assistance from the government to buy private health insurance on their own. How many people will be affected is unclear.

            And last, but not least, there are the millions who will be fined, because they simply cannot afford the premiums, period (subsidized or not).  Let's not forget that millions and millions of Americans (a third is what I often see quoted) are 'underwater' in mortgages, and barely hanging on.

            Then there's the millions already foreclosed upon, who certainly are in no position due to job loss, etc., to carry an insurance premium.

            And it's some of these poor folks, who will be fined in order to help pay [along with other funding sources] for those folks who can just manage to eke out a monthly health insurance premium payment.

            We need to demand that our lawmakers get rid of the above "glitch," and properly subsidize the program.  

            It's a shame that progressive advocates were not able to persuade the PtB to take care of this before its implementation.

            Mollie

            "Only he who can see the invisible, can do the impossible."-- Frank L. Gaines


            hiddennplainsight

            by musiccitymollie on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 03:44:45 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Just wait for the howls. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              musiccitymollie

              I warned about this while the health insurance debate was going on and I kept getting replies that "it will be fixed later".  

              Fat chance on having a Republican House fix it later.

              Meanwhile, you're going to hear a lot of middle class people howl to holy hell as they react to the sticker shock. I really believe that we'll see a rerun of the 1989 fight to kill Medicare catastrophic coverage.

              •  You remember that, too, huh? I'm wondering if (0+ / 0-)

                that's a possibility.

                I would imagine that if enough middle class folks' coverage is adversely affected, it could happen.

                Hopefully, the PtB will make needed adjustments.  They could, you know.

                Or better yet, if there is serious blowback, maybe they'll just relent, and go with Medicare-For-All.

                Won't hold my breath, on that one, though. ;-)

                Mollie

                "Only he who can see the invisible, can do the impossible."-- Frank L. Gaines


                hiddennplainsight

                by musiccitymollie on Sun Mar 24, 2013 at 04:10:53 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  oops (0+ / 0-)
          Among other things, they have turned health insurance into a tightly control utility market, with rather modest limits on profit margins.
          Not at all so.

          There is a limit on gross margin from premium income, but that is all, overall profit margins aren't addressed. (This may or may not apply only to those participating in exchanges, I can no longer recall.)

          Certain base plans must be offered by those participating in exchanges (and only those), but other stuff can be offered too, and the premiums for said plans is not set.

          In general not so tightly regulated, even for those participating in exchanges.

          That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

          by enhydra lutris on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 01:48:53 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Like the bad economy, its in their rearview mirror (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cocinero, viral, jm214, enhydra lutris, splashy

        I don't think there's any conspiracy or plan, they've just moved on to other projects.  

        The best thing they can do is work hard to stop letting it grow more complicated.  There have been too many changes since its passage that make it more complex and cause it to provide less coverage to fewer people.  

        The Medicaid Expansion has become very problematic, hopefully they'll take a strong stance against letting red states dismember it.  Sure, they're probably sick and tired of dealing with the implementation, but it's their job and they need to do it well.

        It is an old strategy of tyrants to delude their victims into fighting their battles for them. FDR

        by Betty Pinson on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:52:57 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Have A Nice Day! (0+ / 0-)
        Now let the Adminapologists please direct the rest of us to all the Serious Efforts the West Wing has made to Tell The Rest Of Us The Whole Story...
        This "Adminapologist" (Love the negative labeling!!! Nice!) has a sense that, since the ACA is Supreme Court upheld law, and that a lot of the provisions of the ACA will not become effective until 2014, there is time to work on this next year.

        It's not like there aren't any other issues to deal with right now that have an immediate effect on people! Oh no...

        You meet them halfway with love, peace and persuasion, and expect them to rise for the occasion ~ Van Morrison

        by paz3 on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 10:17:01 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Like peace, which the government isn't at all (0+ / 0-)

          big on, or labor issues, which they aren't at all big on, or, oh yes, austerity! That's the replacement priority. That's why they can't get the word out (remembering that the entire administration, hundreds of thousands strong, can only focus on one thing at a time, just like Congress.)

          That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

          by enhydra lutris on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 01:51:39 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Occam's razor (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        viral

        They have just done a crappy job of educating people about it...

        If you took the greed out of Wall Street all you’d have left is pavement ~Robert Reich

        by k8dd8d on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 10:40:44 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  people will be as educated about ACA, (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          alice kleeman

          or as "un", as they choose to be

          There's no end of information out there.

          "Show up. Pay attention. Tell the truth. And don't be attached to the results." -- Angeles Arrien

          by Sybil Liberty on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 11:14:37 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Can't they just print up a pamphlet with bullet (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          viral, jm214, kareylou, splashy

          points of all the new, good things it does and use the US Postal Service to send one to each and every American household? "What the Affordable Health Care Act will Do For You"?  Would that be so impossible?

          It's crazy how uninformed people are about the new benefits.

          If the plutocrats begin the program, we will end it. -- Eugene Debs.

          by livjack on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 11:15:45 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I can see the GOP blocking that (0+ / 0-)

            There's no doubt in my mind that if they tried to do it, the Republicans would block it in the House.

            •  Nice answer. BUT If HHS decided to use some of it (0+ / 0-)

              s large PR budget to print that pamphlet, I do have to ask, in fear, of course, of being labeled a "CT," what in hell the Republicans in Congress have to say or do about that, or how in any way they could stop "the government" from explaining to "the citizens" what a bipartisan piece of legislation means.

              "Is that all there is?" Peggy Lee.

              by jm214 on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 12:52:46 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Look at the 36 Obamacare repeal votes! (0+ / 0-)

                The Republicans just can't help themselves. They will use any excuse to vote against it.

                •  They can "vote against it [?Obamacare?]" all they (0+ / 0-)

                  want, but they cannot stop the Administration from doing what I would think is one of its functions, advocating for and educating the "electorate" on the contents of the ACA and what it means, practically, to its "beneficiaries."

                  If the Army can sponsor NASCAR without any kind of appropriation that says so, if our "leaders" can beat the war drums in favor of starting another one against Iran, you tell me again why "the government" can't spend a few million on a "pamplet" or an entry in whitehouse.gov that concisely explains the ACA in a way that ordinary mortals, non-lobbyists, can understand and even, God forbid, get behind.

                  "Is that all there is?" Peggy Lee.

                  by jm214 on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 01:19:51 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  Ridiculous - that call would be purely up to the (0+ / 0-)

              administration.

              That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

              by enhydra lutris on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 01:52:31 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Also... (4+ / 0-)

            ...everytime the insurance companies raise rates they say "because of Obama care!" or when companies buy crappier health plans "because of Obama care!" So there's readying association with negative things however bullshit.

    •  I read the bill back then. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mary Mike, geez53

      Who knows what it is today.  Most who receive health care from employers won't see any affects until 2018, just to add to the confusion.

      In the ACA bill, the low income Fed contributions are dependent on "available funds" - this has always concerned me.  It's so easy these days to say we don't have available funds.

      Today, kids can stay on parents insurance until 26.

      Pre-existing conditions can't be used as excuse to refuse payment by insurers.

      Insurers are limited to their profits, and have to return excess to insureds.

      Other than that, I don't think much has changed.  I could be wrong.

      It's difficult to be happy knowing so many suffer. We must unite.

      by War on Error on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:41:20 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  There's more (5+ / 0-)

        Medicare beneficiaries were expected to save an average of $4,200 in 2012 because of the new law.

        In 2012, an estimated 34.1 million people with Medicare have received one or more free preventive services (including screenings for cancer, diabetes and blood pressure).

        6.1 million seniors and people with disabilities saved over $5.7 billion so far on prescription drugs.

        Medicare beneficiaries who hit the donut hole received an average savings of $635 on prescription drugs so far.

        The new law invests new resources and requires new screening procedures for health care providers to help boost efforts to reduce fraud and waste in Medicare and Medicaid — already billions of dollars have been recouped.

        The law is reducing administrative expenses by streamlining and standardizing billing and recordkeeping.

      •  pre-existing conditions (0+ / 0-)

        clause doesn't go into effect until 2014.  Until then, states are providing high risk pools for those people as part of ACA...

        If you took the greed out of Wall Street all you’d have left is pavement ~Robert Reich

        by k8dd8d on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 10:41:53 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  This is a popular misconception, but false (0+ / 0-)
        Insurers are limited to their profits, and have to return excess to insureds.
        They are limited on the amount of premium revenue that is not arguably spent on medical care. This has always been a tiny fraction of their profits. They make their money from gambling investments, largely offshore.

        That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

        by enhydra lutris on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 01:55:47 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Exactly! (9+ / 0-)

      It is the job of the administration to explain in detail how this will effect the average American.  

      I don't understand why the administration has failed to do this.  At this point, the public should be looking forward to 2014, if for no other reason, they can get some form of healthcare insurance.  

      For example, how many people know they can get a colonoscopy and their insurance company will pay 100% NOW?  That includes any procedures that need to be done to remove growth/polyps.  

      How many women know their current insurance will pay 100% NOW for their mammograms?

      How may people know a doctors visit and blood tests done for well care is paid 100% NOW by their current insurance?

      And those are just a few of the highlights.

      We keep saying the GOP needs to wake up from the last election.  So do the Democrats.  

      •  Unfortunately it is impossible for the (5+ / 0-)

        administration alone to get this word out when there has been a huge propaganda campaign to spread misinformation about the law.  People like us - using messages just like the one you posted need to play our part in getting the word out using every means of communication that we can.

        “The future depends entirely on what each of us does every day.” Gloria Steinem

        by ahumbleopinion on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 10:24:19 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I respectfully disagree (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Joe Bacon, k8dd8d, enhydra lutris

          It is the administration's job to get the information out.  It ludicrous to suggest the POTUS and his cabinet do not have the resources at their disposal.  

          Yes, there is a huge propaganda campaign to discredit ACR.  There was a huge campaign to discredit Obama personally.  How did that work out in 2012?

          My point here is the administration can "get it in gear" when it suits their purposes.  Why can't they do it for ACR?  

          Unless, of course, the battle was won with the passage of ACR and it's no longer a priority because it's already part of "the legacy".  

          It's been my experience that, most of the time, people don't do something because the just don't want to or have other priorities.  

          The administration is no different.  

    •  As an ex markting manager for a large multi- (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Joe Bacon, k8dd8d

      national, I am beyond amazement at the dim bulbs who can't design what amounts to a rather straightforward market strategy.  It's a one-martini-lunch conversation - a dime job!  WTF!  I'll do it for free if they ask me, and it would work.  Any competent person in the business could do it . . . while chewing gum!

  •  I'm still struggling to understand. (22+ / 0-)

    Single Payer would have been so much simpler.

    “To care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan” -Abraham Lincoln. V.A. motto adopted 1959. GLBTVet wife of Punkin4.

    by glbTVET on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:14:06 AM PDT

    •  Had the opportunity (16+ / 0-)

      to speak with the great Dr. Quentin Young of PNHP the other day. Which is always a joy in itself.
      He expressed some surprise that in the wake of the passage of ACA the single payer movement seems to have grown considerably.

      I attributed this to math, as I have yet to see a for-profit private insurance health care financing scheme that demonstrates the cost control and universal access single payer does.
      Probably because it doesn't exist, and once you know you can't not know.

      •  That's the Problem (7+ / 0-)

        The people who came up with this purely political solution didn't understand the underlying problem. They thought they could take some point between the left and the right and just implement that. They don't seem to understand that there's an actual problem that needs to be solved, and only a SOLUTION is going to work, not just some odd political compromise.

        Only some form of universal, public system is going to be able to deliver universal, affordable healthcare. If you push millions of people into the for-profit system, all you do is run up costs. But this whole thing became a political issue when costs soared over 15% of GDP. Unless you get the costs down below that (and more reasonably down to about 12% or less) the political problem doesn't go away because the economic problem doesn't go away.

        This excess cost is eating into the other sectors--food, clothing, transportation, housing--and holding back the recovery. And, it's an excess burden on our exports. So, of course, people still want single-payer--because they want an actual, working solution.

    •  Simpler than the 23 page application this (10+ / 0-)

      program has.
      Pardon me, I know that sounds like the endless loud exaggerations about how many pages the bill had.
      But I caught a couple minutes of Melissa Harris-Perry this AM and they were discussing the implementation of the exchanges.
      MHP held up and asked about the 23 page application. She said she knew he'd said only parts of it applied to any particular person but wasn't there a better way to get this out?
      The guy (evidently a spokesman for program) said most people would just apply on-line and that was a lot simpler.

      MHP said this could all be avoided with Medicare for all or single payer

      Then I had to leave.

      I assume it is easier on line because the paper app would ask a question and then "If yes, continue" and "If no go to page 17" or whatever
      But my heart sank at the thought of that 23 page application. It will be very, very, very bad PR

      I hope to catch ahow later and anyone who cares a lot about this plan should try to watch or read the transcript. It would be the early part of the show.

      •  We've heard the online bullshit before! (8+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        k8dd8d, myboo, Caipirinha, Ozzie, hmi, HCKAD, joynow, splashy

        I work at Social Security, where we've repeatedly been told to push online services.

        When we tell people to use on online services, some like the idea but there are plenty of people in rural and poorer communities who DO NOT HAVE A COMPUTER. And they have to travel A LONG DISTANCE to a county library that quite often has A LONG LINE of people waiting to use a single terminal.

        And there is a SIGNIFICANT CHUNK of people who are computer illiterate. They have repeated problems of getting a PIN and PASSWORD registered. They call our 800 lines because they cannot comprehend what is on the computer screens and we have to explain it to them in very simple terms.

        Many people give up even trying to register just our of sheer frustration.

        Yet you can't get people in our headquarters and their Congressional overseers to comprehend that.

        And it sure is funny that when Medicare was implemented in 1966, all people had to do was sign a card if they didn't want to be enrolled. A single card. Not a 23 page form that no matter how out of touch bureaucrats will try to design it, it will still confuse the overwhelming majority of people and lead them to give up applying for any help.

        •  I know lots of people who are computer phobic (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Joe Bacon

          Who hate sitting down at a computer to try to figure it out. It's too much reading for them, too much is hidden, it's not obvious enough.

          If they can't hold it, or have someone tell them in plain language what something is about, they just can't tolerate spending time on it.

          They want to go outside and work with animals or plants, not a machine. That's their bottom line. They can't imagine anything that is more of a nightmare than to deal with a computer.

          Women create the entire labor force. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Sympathy is the strongest instinct in human nature. - Charles Darwin

          by splashy on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 08:19:50 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Experiences with Medicare "D" (0+ / 0-)

            We get a lot of calls from people having problems applying for the Medicare "D" Extra Help. They are completely confused by the subsidies and the extra premiums they have to pay if they have higher incomes.

            And add to that 1-800-Medicare, which the government contracted out to the lowest bidder. The 1-800-Medicare operators continually misinform callers about how to apply for plans, they misdirect callers to us, and constantly enroll people with incorrect plans.

            Single Payer would be so much easier to implement!

    •  Single Payer? (0+ / 0-)

      And you would have passed single payer how?

      A personal six figure bribe to Joe Lieberman?

      You meet them halfway with love, peace and persuasion, and expect them to rise for the occasion ~ Van Morrison

      by paz3 on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 10:20:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Reconciliation. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        No Exit, Eric Nelson

        Where you only needed 51 votes. But the pimps who run the insurance rackets put enough money in Mad Max Baucus's pocket to make sure that didn't happen.

        •  Reconciliation: possible path(?) to single payer.. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Joe Bacon

          could lead to single payer and here is an idea that I found awhile back

          beowolf comments::

          August 25th, 2009 at 12:38 am
          Great post John. Its simple to get universal coverage through reconciliation, just expand the eligibility of Medicare. It could be paid for by uncapping FICA caps on Social Security (Medicare taxes are already uncapped) and raising the FICA rate enough to make the deal revenue neutral.
          I’ve read that there’s Senate parliamentarian precedent that changing the age requirements is “incidental to the budget” so can be kicked out of Reconciliation via the Byrd Rule. However, there’s another to expand eligibility, and that’s to change the Code section that Nixon signed into law granting coverage to the permanently disabled, 42 US Code 7 §1395c(2)– It currently reads:
          individuals under age 65 who have been entitled for not less than 24 months to benefits under subchapter II of this chapter (or would have been so entitled to such benefits if certain government employment were covered employment under such subchapter) or under the railroad retirement system on the basis of a disability…
          But this Code section would cover every citizen and permanent resident if amended to:
          individuals under age 65 entitled to a Social Security Account Number under subchapter II of this chapter.
          http://www.law.cornell.edu/...
          beowulf Says:
          August 25th, 2009 at 8:49 am
          The amended code section could read more simply as, “individuals under 65 entitled to a Social Security Account Number”. The reference to “subchapter ii” is unnecessary (see 42 US Code 7 §405c(2) “wage records”).

          Feel free to steal any or all of this, if you wish. I’m a government contractor, so its not something I can really blog about openly ) - emphasis added

          This is an idea that seems to cut through all the parliamentary stuff going straight to single payer
      •  By Telling the American People the Truth (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Joe Bacon, Ozzie

        We pay over 17% of GDP for our broken system. Sensible countries in Europe pay between 10 and 12%, and get better outcomes. We have to compete with these people, but our healthcare system is undermining us with ridiculous costs.

        Instead, we took a step backward, one guaranteed to increase the amount of money going to the healthcare sector without any better quality.

        The Administration simply gave up on getting an actual solution to the problem. They expanded the failed system. Bravo.

    •  And More Effective (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Ozzie, Eric Nelson

      And cheaper.

      But, you're stuck with the government you've got, not the government you wish you had.

  •  Hell, I don't know what's in the law. (14+ / 0-)

    Would be a great idea to have a bulletpoint summary--hey, like a set of actual talking points!--that explains and summarizes what's in the bill.

    The road to Hell is paved with pragmatism.

    by TheOrchid on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:18:31 AM PDT

    •  I've read it. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cocinero, ferg, Joe Bacon

      If you decide to do so as well, just read down the section headings and maybe the "Sense of the Senate" sections.

      Most of the details read like this kind of crap: "In article 2b, section 7, subsection 3a, paragraph 6f, replace semicolon (;) with comma (,)."

      And God said, "Let there be light"; and with a Big Bang, there was light. And God said "Ow! Ow My eyes!" and in a flash God separated light from darkness. "Whew! Now that's better. Now where was I. Oh yea . . ."

      by Pale Jenova on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:29:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Here you go! Short version: It's complicated. But (14+ / 0-)

      there are bullet points that can be extracted and explained in a readable and sensible way. Which could be expostulated on, if the Admin had any interest in doing anything other than intensifying the process of Inward and Upward Wealth Transfer, and putting in place a global set of mechanisms of surveillance and control. In a world that you have to wonder, given the other emphasis on stuff like "all of the above energy 'policy' (sic)" that will leave a planet that even the Elite will find it hard to live on, and dumping a quarter of the world's wealth (and steadily increasing) into the MIC thing.

         Okay, explained like you’re a five year-old (well, okay, maybe a bit older), without too much oversimplification, and (hopefully) without sounding too biased:

          What people call “Obamacare” is actually the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. However, people were calling it “Obamacare” before everyone even hammered out what it would be. It’s a term mostly used by people who don’t like the PPACA, and it’s become popularized in part because PPACA is a really long and awkward name, even when you turn it into an acronym like that.

          Anyway, the PPACA made a bunch of new rules regarding health care, with the purpose of making health care more affordable for everyone. Opponents of the PPACA, on the other hand, feel that the rules it makes take away too many freedoms and force people (both individuals and businesses) to do things they shouldn’t have to.

          So what does it do? Well, here is everything, in the order of when it goes into effect (because some of it happens later than other parts of it):

          (Note: Page numbers listed in citations are the page numbers within the actual document, not the page numbers of the PDF file)

          Already in effect:

              It allows the Food and Drug Administration to approve more generic drugs (making for more competition in the market to drive down prices) ( Citation: An entire section of the bill, called Title VII, is devoted to this, starting on page 747 )
              It increases the rebates on drugs people get through Medicare (so drugs cost less) ( Citation: Page 216, sec. 2501 )
              It establishes a non-profit group, that the government doesn’t directly control, PCORI, to study different kinds of treatments to see what works better and is the best use of money. ( Citation: Page 665, sec. 1181)
              It makes chain restaurants like McDonalds display how many calories are in all of their foods, so people can have an easier time making choices to eat healthy. ( Citation: Page 499, sec. 4205 )
              It makes a “high-risk pool” for people with pre-existing conditions. Basically, this is a way to slowly ease into getting rid of “pre-existing conditions” altogether. For now, people who already have health issues that would be considered “pre-existing conditions” can still get insurance, but at different rates than people without them. ( Citation: Page 30, sec. 1101, Page 45, sec. 2704, and Page 46, sec. 2702 )
              It forbids insurance companies from discriminating based on a disability, or because they were the victim of domestic abuse in the past (yes, insurers really did deny coverage for that) ( Citation: Page 47, sec. 2705 )
              It renews some old policies, and calls for the appointment of various positions.
              It creates a new 10% tax on indoor tanning booths. ( Citation: Page 923, sec. 5000B )
              It says that health insurance companies can no longer tell customers that they won’t get any more coverage because they have hit a “lifetime limit”. Basically, if someone has paid for health insurance, that company can’t tell that person that he’s used that insurance too much throughout his life so they won’t cover him any more. They can’t do this for lifetime spending, and they’re limited in how much they can do this for yearly spending. ( Citation: Page 14, sec. 2711 )
              Kids can continue to be covered by their parents’ health insurance until they’re 26. ( Citation: Page 15, sec. 2714 )
              No more “pre-existing conditions” for kids under the age of 19. ( Citation: Page 45, sec. 2704 and Page 57, sec. 1255 )
              Insurers have less ability to change the amount customers have to pay for their plans.
              People in a “Medicare Gap” get a rebate to make up for the extra money they would otherwise have to spend. ( Citation: Page 379, sec. 3301 )
              Insurers can’t just drop customers once they get sick. ( Citation: Page 14, sec. 2712 )
              Insurers have to tell customers what they’re spending money on. (Instead of just “administrative fee”, they have to be more specific).
              Insurers need to have an appeals process for when they turn down a claim, so customers have some manner of recourse other than a lawsuit when they’re turned down. ( Citation: Page 42, sec. 2719 )
              Anti-fraud funding is increased and new ways to stop fraud are created. ( Citation: Page 699, sec. 6402 )
              Medicare extends to smaller hospitals. ( Citation: Starting on page 344, the entire section “Part II” seems to deal with this )
              Medicare patients with chronic illnesses must be monitored more thoroughly.
              Reduces the costs for some companies that handle benefits for the elderly. ( Citation: Page 492, sec. 4202)
              A new website is made to give people insurance and health information. (I think this is it:http://www.healthcare.gov/ ). ( Citation: Page 36, sec. 1103 )
              A credit program is made that will make it easier for business to invest in new ways to treat illness by paying half the cost of the investment. (Note – this program was temporary. It already ended) ( Citation: Page 830, sec. 9023 )
              A limit is placed on just how much of a percentage of the money an insurer makes can be profit, to make sure they’re not price-gouging customers. ( Citation: Page 22, sec. 1101 )
              A limit is placed on what type of insurance accounts can be used to pay for over-the-counter drugs without a prescription. Basically, your insurer isn’t paying for the Aspirin you bought for that hangover. ( Citation: Page 800, sec. 9003 )
              Employers need to list the benefits they provided to employees on their tax forms. ( Citation: Page 800, sec. 9002 )
              Any new health plans must provide preventative care (mammograms, colonoscopies, etc.) without requiring any sort of co-pay or charge. ( Citation: Page 14, sec. 2713 )

          1/1/2013

              If you make over $200,000 a year, your taxes go up a tiny bit (0.9%). Edit: To address those who take issue with the word “tiny”, a change of 0.9% is relatively tiny. Any look at how taxes have fluctuated over the years will reveal that a change of less than one percent is miniscule, especially when we’re talking about people in the top 5% of earners. ( Citation: Page 818, sec. 9015 )

          1/1/2014

          This is when a lot of the really big changes happen.

              No more “pre-existing conditions”. At all. People will be charged the same regardless of their medical history. ( Citation: Page 45, sec. 2704, Page 46, sec. 2701, and Page 57, sec. 1255 )
              If you can afford insurance but do not get it, you will be charged a fee. This is the “mandate” that people are talking about. Basically, it’s a trade-off for the “pre-existing conditions” bit, saying that since insurers now have to cover you regardless of what you have, you can’t just wait to buy insurance until you get sick. Otherwise no one would buy insurance until they needed it. You can opt not to get insurance, but you’ll have to pay the fee instead, unless of course you’re not buying insurance because you just can’t afford it. (Note: On 6/28/12, the Supreme Court ruled that this is Constitutional, as long as it’s considered a tax on the uninsured and not a penalty for not buying insurance… nitpicking about wording, mostly, but the long and short of it is, it looks like this is accepted by the courts) ( Citation: Page 145, sec. 5000A, and here is the actual court ruling for those who wish to read it. )

          Question: What determines whether or not I can afford the mandate? Will I be forced to pay for insurance I can’t afford?

          Answer: There are all kinds of checks in place to keep you from getting screwed. Kaiser actually has a webpage with a pretty good rundown on it, if you’re worried about it. You can see it here.

          Okay, have we got that settled? Okay, moving on…

              Small businesses get some tax credits for two years. (It looks like this is specifically for businesses with 25 or fewer employees) ( Citation: Page 138, sec. 1421 )
              Businesses with over 50 employees must offer health insurance to full-time employees, or pay a penalty.
              Insurers now can’t do annual spending caps. Their customers can get as much health care in a given year as they need. ( Citation: Page 14, sec. 2711 )
              Limits how high of an annual deductible insurers can charge customers. ( Citation: Page 62, sec. 1302 )
              Cut some Medicare spending
              Place a $2500 limit on tax-free spending on FSAs (accounts for medical spending). Basically, people using these accounts now have to pay taxes on any money over $2500 they put into them. ( Citation: Page 801, sec. 9005 )
              Establish health insurance exchanges and rebates for the lower and middle-class, basically making it so they have an easier time getting affordable medical coverage.
              Congress and Congressional staff will only be offered the same insurance offered to people in the insurance exchanges, rather than Federal Insurance. Basically, we won’t be footing their health care bills any more than any other American citizen. ( Citation: Page 81, sec. 1312 )
              A new tax on pharmaceutical companies.
              A new tax on the purchase of medical devices.
              A new tax on insurance companies based on their market share. Basically, the more of the market they control, the more they’ll get taxed.
              The amount you can deduct from your taxes for medical expenses increases.

          1/1/2015

              Doctors’ pay will be determined by the quality of their care, not how many people they treat. Edit: a_real_MD addresses questions regarding this one in far more detail and with far more expertise than I can offer in this post. If you’re looking for a more in-depth explanation of this one (as many of you are), I highly recommend you give his post a read.

          1/1/2017

              If any state can come up with their own plan, one which gives citizens the same level of care at the same price as the PPACA, they can ask the Secretary of Health and Human Resources for permission to do their plan instead of the PPACA. So if they can get the same results without, say, the mandate, they can be allowed to do so. Vermont, for example, has expressed a desire to just go straight to single-payer (in simple terms, everyone is covered, and medical expenses are paid by taxpayers). ( Citation: Page 98, sec. 1332 )

          2018

              All health care plans must now cover preventative care (not just the new ones).
              A new tax on “Cadillac” health care plans (more expensive plans for rich people who want fancier coverage).

          2020

              The elimination of the “Medicare gap”

          Aaaaand that’s it right there.

          The biggest thing opponents of the bill have against it is the mandate. They claim that it forces people to buy insurance, and forcing people to buy something is unconstitutional. Personally, I take the opposite view, as it’s not telling people to buy a specific thing, just to have a specific type of thing, just like a part of the money we pay in taxes pays for the police and firemen who protect us, this would have us paying to ensure doctors can treat us for illness and injury.

          Plus, as previously mentioned, it’s necessary if you’re doing away with “pre-existing conditions” because otherwise no one would get insurance until they needed to use it, which defeats the purpose of insurance.

          Whew! Hope that answers the question!

          Edits: Fixing typos.

          Edit 2: Wow… people have a lot of questions. I’m afraid I can’t get to them now (got to go to work), but I’ll try to later.

          Edit 3: Okay, I’m at work, so I can’t go really in-depth for some of the more complex questions just now, but I’ll try and address the simpler ones. Also, a few I’m seeing repeatedly:

              For those looking for a source… well, here is the text of the bill, all 974 pages of it (as it sits currently after being amended multiple times). I can’t point out page numbers just now, but they’re there if you want them.
              The website that was to be established, I think, is http://www.healthcare.gov/.
              A lot of people are concerned about the 1/1/2015 bit that says that doctors’ pay will be tied to quality, not quantity. Because so many people want to know more about this, I’ve sought out what I believe to be the pertinent sections (From Page 307, section 3007). It looks like this part alters a part of another bill, theSocial Security Act, passed a long while ago. That bill already regulates how doctors’ pay is determined. The PPACA just changes the criteria. Judging by how professionals are writing about it, it looks like this is just referring to Medicaid and Medicare. Basically, this is changing how much the government pays to doctors and medical groups, in situations where they are already responsible for pay.

          Edit 4: Numerous people are pointing out I said “Medicare” when I meant “Medicaid”. Whoops. Fixed (I think).

          Edit 5: Apparently I messed up the acronym (initialism?). Fixed.

          Edit 6: Fixed a few more places where I mixed up terms (it was late, I was tired). Also, for everyone asking if they can post this elsewhere, feel free to.

          Edit 7: Okay, I need to get to work. Thanks to everyone for the kind comments, and I hope I’ve addressed the questions most of you have (that I can actually answer). I just want to be sure to say, I’m just a guy. I’m no expert, and everything I posted here I attribute mostly to Wikipedia or the actual bill itself, with an occasional Google search to clarify stuff. I am absolutely not a difinitive source or expert. I was just trying to simplify things as best I can without dumbing them down. I’m glad that many of you found this helpful.

          Edit 8: Wow, this has spread all over the internet… and I’m kinda’ embarrassed because what spread included all of my 2AM typos and mistakes. Well, it’s too late to undo my mistakes now that the floodgates have opened. I only hope that people aren’t too harsh on me for the stuff I’ve tried to go back and correct.

          Edit 9: Added a few citations (easy-to-find stuff). But I gotta’ run, so the rest will have to wait.

          Edit 10: Adding a few more citations (it’ll probably take me a while to get to all of them) and a few more additional entries as well.

          Edit 11: Tons more citations!

          Edit 12: I updated this with a reference to the recent court ruling on the mandate, and address the question everyone seems to be asking about it (“What if I can’t afford to buy insurance?”)

      http://jessicadickinsongoodman.com/...

      It's complicated, it's opaque, and it's full of opportunities for the greedheads to profit from. With a tiny bit of "medical UN-Surance," not "health care," thrown in. But then that was the whole point, wasn't it?

      My personal gripe: In the "negotiation," at that "table" there were no nurses, no health care aides, no billers or coders, no experienced people of good will who fill out the staffs in doctors' offices and clinics and hospitals, who KNOW what is fucked and wrong and cruel and stupid and wasteful with the Thing We Have Now but who were just totally shut out of the game and shunted away from the "table." So that the SOBs who will get rich off this have excised the stuff that might really have resulted in some real Change.

      "Is that all there is?" Peggy Lee.

      by jm214 on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:43:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  if that's the 'short' version (6+ / 0-)

        then we're f*cked.
        We need a 30-second soundbite version.

        (Is it time for the pitchforks and torches yet?)

        by PJEvans on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:48:15 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's an omnibus bill, so maybe even the vaunted (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          cocinero

          media managers in the West Wing would have a challenge distilling out the most salient bits. And what interest of theirs would it serve to do so?

          "Is that all there is?" Peggy Lee.

          by jm214 on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:51:58 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  It's so goddamned easy and straightforward. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Caipirinha, jm214, TheOrchid

          You bullet the high points and use any and all means to market them.  Forget worrying about the dustbin of structural problems in the bill.  Once you've sold people on the good things already in the bill, it's much easier to attain the other stuff that fixes it  . . . especially single pay.

          Those who designed and ran the election campaign are smart enough to know this already - been a real headscratcher to me why they hit the dimmer switch.

          •  second that! (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            jm214

            If the plutocrats begin the program, we will end it. -- Eugene Debs.

            by livjack on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 11:20:13 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  The bill was written by lobbyists and staffers (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            jm214, Joe Bacon

            pulling in all different directions, on promises that if their little piece was included in the bill they'd support it. The little pieces were all stuffed in, and they immediately began dissing it as soon as the ink was dry anyway.

            The definition of a camel is "a horse drafted by a committee." Multiply by 700, and that's how laws like this end up as complex as they are.

            •  Totally agree abt the camel thing, but (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              jm214

              my point is, ignore the shit for now.  Mine what gold nuggets there are, and there are a few of those.  Pull the people in with that.  You won't win over everyone by a long shot, but you gotta build, patiently and aggressively.  "Critical Mass" doesn't just get handed to you.  But they ain't even trying.

      •  TY (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Eric Nelson, jm214

        I copied what you posted for my wife since I'm a vet with Single Payer (V.A.) and Single Payer (Medicare) She needs coverage.

        “To care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan” -Abraham Lincoln. V.A. motto adopted 1959. GLBTVet wife of Punkin4.

        by glbTVET on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:59:23 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Thanks (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Eric Nelson

        Very helpful.

        Just because the government keeps a record of real property transfers, it doesn't mean that the government wants to confiscate your home.

        by NCJan on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 10:09:33 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  A lot of it has changed (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eps62, glbTVET, Monitor78

      so, yeah, they need to update the summary and get it out to the public.

      It is an old strategy of tyrants to delude their victims into fighting their battles for them. FDR

      by Betty Pinson on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:54:43 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Just as telling (0+ / 0-)

      Health care and health insurance in this country is such a rotten maze I don't know if anyone can explain it.  The smallest doctors offices have to hire full time people just to sort out how to get paid.

      So I'm not surprised that the Administration has a hard time selling it.

      What I am surprised about is that after three years, the GOP hasn't come up with an alternative.

      Just because the government keeps a record of real property transfers, it doesn't mean that the government wants to confiscate your home.

      by NCJan on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 10:04:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  White Life Expectancy Plummets In Reddest Areas (7+ / 0-)

    The people who are most opposed to ACA are in the reddest areas, which are also the areas with the highest numbers of uninsured people. The life expectancy in these areas is plummeting by as much as 5 years for white women without high school educations.

    Is it because they don't have health insurance they are suspicious of it?  Or do they feel that if they can't have health insurance nobody should?  Or that their family should go bankrupt over a treatable illness rather than risk one illegal alien get a measles vaccine?

    There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

    by bernardpliers on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:19:52 AM PDT

    •  As I often hear: can't it be all of them? n/t (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      myboo

      "Lone catch of the moon, the roots of the sigh of an idea there will be the outcome may be why?"--from a spam diary entitled "The Vast World."

      by bryduck on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:25:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  No, it's because… (12+ / 0-)

      …they're afraid the government is going to take away what little money they have and give it to people who don't deserve it as much as they do.

      OK OK, that's my interpretation of the anti-government position, anyway.  I really have no idea what they're thinking, and it's possible their worldview is just very different from my own.  (I heard something on the radio last night about people in small town America who couldn't even imagine a job that involved sitting down all day.  Maybe it's hard for us to wrap our heads around the huge cultural gaps that exist in this country.)

      •  It's the sticker shock I'm expecting (5+ / 0-)

        I got sticker shock using the California exchange calculator and seeing how much a "silver policy" is going to cost.

        http://www.coveredca.com/...

        It's far more than what I pay now for my group policy. And watch what happens when people see how much it will cost even with the "ransom", er, "subsidies" the government will give to the insurance companies. Watch what happens when companies terminate health coverage and force people into these exchanges...

        •  That's what scares me. We pay very little for our (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Carol in San Antonio

          insurance now and it has always been a "part" of my husband's salary as far as we are concerned.  

          However, there is now talk of them dropping it after this year or limiting new hires.  If that happens and we have to pay much more than we do now...it will reduce our salary, or what we consider our annual living, considerably.  We have done the calculators online, if we have to use the exchanges and it is a huge difference in how much we pay now.

          •  I know (4+ / 0-)

            Right now, I pay $59.79 every two weeks for my health insurance under Kaiser Permanente in Southern California.

            California's Health Inusrance exchange is telling me that if I have to buy a policy in the exchange with my age (57) and gross salary (89,000) that my monthly premium for a single person is $635. And I'll have a maximum out of pocket cost of $6400.

            Right now, my maximum out of pocket cost is $1500.

            And the "silver" policy covers a lot less than my current Kaiser coverage.

            There is a very big difference between paying $119.58 a month against $635. Being forced to spend an additional $515.42 that will wind up in the pocket of a Wall Street CEO so he can buy another mansion is nothing less than extortion.

            •  I agree. Ours would be even higher, as we have (0+ / 0-)

              children to cover.  He is union and I'm a teacher.  My insurance, under my job, is already extremely high, and so we never enroll in it,  but his was always a blessing being so low for good coverage.

                The company doesn't want to have to cover those who self contract under them or work part time hours or all new hires (all were not always covered immediately...it was part of union contracts or salary negotiations for some who work on the non union part ) and so this is the reason to just eliminate all coverage for everyone or thought of it.....at least this is my understand from the rumors anyway.

            •  How much is your employer's portion? (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              kareylou, Carol in San Antonio

              Because your insurance certainly doesn't cost $119.58 a month -- that's just the portion that your employer passes on to you.

              For way of comparison, for me (age 50) that calculator gives a monthly premium of $530.  My insurance through my employer costs the $150/month that I pay, plus another $450 that my employer kicks in for a total of $600 per month.

              Yes, for many people who get insurance through work, the sticker shock comes because they don't realize how much the insurance actually costs.  Those who have priced individual policies are probably not particularly surprised.

              Political Compass: -6.75, -3.08

              by TexasTom on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 03:13:51 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  OK, here's the total breakdown for me (0+ / 0-)

                Every 2 weeks for Kaiser Permanente:

                Employer pays $179.38
                I pay $59.79

                Total is $239.17

                And since the California Exchange is going to stick me with a bill of $635 every month that's still a jump of $395.83 for me.

                And add in the high copays with a Silver plan.

                And the next factor to consider is that the ACA allows the racketeers to charge up to 3 times the base amount because of my age and preexisting condition. So that $635 for a healthy 57 year old could conceivably go to $1,905 a month for me.

                And every penny of that extortion will go the pimps running the extortion racket.

                Affordable care my @$$!

                •  Your math is off... (0+ / 0-)

                  ...because you're comparing a premium for two weeks ($239.17) with one that is for every month ($635).  If you factor for the different time periods, the difference shrinks to $115/month ($520 vs $635).

                  And the reason that difference exists is because your employer charges the same amount to every employee, regardless of age -- in other words, the cost is the same for a 25 year old coworker as it is for you.  So the premium through the exchange would be lower for everyone who is under age 45, the same for someone who is between 45 and 55, and slightly higher for someone who is between 55 and 65.

                  You're also misunderstanding the provision for charging 3x -- that based on age, not preexisting conditions, and is already factored into that $635 (which is 3x what someone in his/her early twenties would pay).  The only way that they could charge you more than that $635 is if you're a smoker.

                  You may want to try understanding what you're criticizing before you go ballistic.

                  Political Compass: -6.75, -3.08

                  by TexasTom on Sun Mar 24, 2013 at 08:51:17 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

          •  Theoretically (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            k8dd8d, TexasTom, kareylou

            if you're paying very little, your employer has been paying a lot. If your employer drops the health insurance benefit, the amount  the company was paying should be used to increase your salary.

            In practice, it just means a bigger bonus for the CEO.

        •  awful (0+ / 0-)

          The calculator says my premium will increase by 55% and by deductible will increase by 56%.  This is after my insurance premium has already doubled in the last two years.  Thanks Obama!

      •  You're absolutely right on this (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ferg, eps62, cocinero, TexasTom, splashy
        they're afraid the government is going to take away what little money they have and give it to people who don't deserve it as much as they do.
        Many see life as a zero sum game.  If someone else gets something, they're taking their share.  

        I find most conservatives, rich or poor, believe this.  There's a victimhood mentality and they don't want to be victimized.  

  •  of course they don't like something they (8+ / 0-)

    don't know about...that's what happens when the Republican'ts disinformation campaign kicks into gear.
    Starting immediately after it was enacted Republican'ts have been lying, demagoguing and distorting everything about the law. It's surprising to me that such a small plurality opposes it (by only about three percent), after a sustained disinformation campaign the likes of which this country's never seen before.

    When the President and his allies plan to get around to trying to straighten out all of the lies and disinformation is beyond me.

    •  "They" aren't alone in not understanding (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      PJEvans, BroadwayBaby1, Joe Bacon, wdrath

      what ACA actually does and does not do; however, "they" have the RW Media Machine to fill in the massive gaps in understanding with whatever nonsense creates the most poutrage, i.e., "death panels".

      The Dems and administration have dropped the ball and I for one am not going to spend any more time defending ACA with the limited facts I do have.

      So there.

      When someone is impatient and says, "I haven't got all day," I always wonder, How can that be? How can you not have all day? George Carlin

      by msmacgyver on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:31:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  agreed. I have a friend on facebook. . . . (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ahumbleopinion, wdrath, msmacgyver

        who I have known a long time(way before facebook).

         As is the rule she posts anti-ACA stuff and other RW talking points. I usually don't comment on her politics, but when she talks about health care, I will provide rebuttal points and items of useful links link to the state's future exchange site(the family currently doesn't any insurance at all).

        I try to refute the misinformation she has with facts and link to real source not the "newsmax, breitbart, et al" she seems to read from.

      •  Dems are allergic to talking points. (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eps62, cocinero, wdrath, msmacgyver

        Or presenting a unified front. It's too much like THEM. So our message gets cobwebs.
        But you know how PBO has to pound and pound and pound certain points to make sure the general sheepleship gets the gist. This is the same thing. Digestible infobits that don't sound threatening but get the point across in one sentence. Let's do one sentence a week, each conveying an ACA fact or benefit, for one year plus plus into Fall of 2014. If the ACA promo dough drops in July, as motherlu stated [above/below], then let the infoblitz begin this Summer!

        "He went to Harvard, not Hogwarts." ~Wanda Sykes
        No representation without taxation. Rich and don't pay? Shut up.
        Blessinz of teh Ceiling Cat be apwn yu, srsly.

        by OleHippieChick on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:58:25 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Good idea taking small bites of the (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          OleHippieChick, kareylou

          very big apple.

          One of the easiest RW lies to debunk is that ACA is "socialized medicine".  The term is uniquely American invented by the AMA to undermine President Truman's efforts to improve health care coverage...nothing changes.

          No country in the world which enjoys universal coverage calls it "socialized medicine".

          When told that the federal government will NOT be administering the exchanges but that it will be done by private, for profit companies, RWingers usually stop and take at least a moment to re-group.  It doesn't mean that they understand or accept the facts, just that they have to stop and actually think.

          When someone is impatient and says, "I haven't got all day," I always wonder, How can that be? How can you not have all day? George Carlin

          by msmacgyver on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 12:57:24 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  The small bites should be all over every transit (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            msmacgyver

            system, on the teev, radio, social networking. The WH uses twitter a LOT. They've GOT to get a simple ACA message out. If they start in July, all well and good, but they should have started when the ACA changes kicked in.
            It has felt like the cavalry rides in at the last minute for four years. They wait too long, I think. But I'm not going to condemn the strategy. Condemning is  above my pay grade. :-P

            "He went to Harvard, not Hogwarts." ~Wanda Sykes
            No representation without taxation. Rich and don't pay? Shut up.
            Blessinz of teh Ceiling Cat be apwn yu, srsly.

            by OleHippieChick on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 01:22:04 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  You are absolutely right (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              OleHippieChick

              especially about the last minute strategies.  I don't know if the Dems and the administration give Dem voters too much credit or don't know that 'splanin' every single detail of ACA is way above most of our pay grades :)

              When someone is impatient and says, "I haven't got all day," I always wonder, How can that be? How can you not have all day? George Carlin

              by msmacgyver on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 01:37:00 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Well, that was PBO's thing. (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                msmacgyver

                Have his back by applying people pressure to our reps and sens. Make their lives miserable. Turn the screws at town hall meetings. He really wants us to take an active part in our democracy, but that's hard to keep up.
                We need professional one-liners, directives, to use on our simple brethran and sistern -- including ourselves. I'd like to know short, snappy sayings about what ACA will do. WWII-type posterspeak, ffs. Like, "Loose lips sink ships." Something. ANYthing. I'm just as lazy as every other lazy USian.

                "He went to Harvard, not Hogwarts." ~Wanda Sykes
                No representation without taxation. Rich and don't pay? Shut up.
                Blessinz of teh Ceiling Cat be apwn yu, srsly.

                by OleHippieChick on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 02:03:51 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

    •  at the time the ACA was being debated... (0+ / 0-)

      even before it was enacted, it was apparent to me that, once enacted, the President and his allies needed a permanent, ongoing, sustainted public relations educational campaign to ensure all of its benefits were accurately conveyed to the American people and to rebut the likely disinformation. After waiting for a couple of years and seeing the results of the 2010 election which hinged, in large part, on the success of that disinformation campaign against the Affordable Care Act, it occurred to me that the President and his staff apparently had no intention of defending it until the 2012 campaign. And during the 2012 campaign they did defend it...sort of.

      There is still a need for a permanent, ongoing, sustained educational/public relations campaign to accurately convey what the Affordable Care Act is...and what it isn't. It would be great if the Democrats could finally get around to...starting one.

      The Democratic Party's handling of the the ACA after it's passage is emblemmatic of the Democratic Party as a whole...all too willing to...at least sometimes...do the right thing...and then hope for the best. They have no backbone...even when they win and even when they're right. No wonder the Republicans are always trying to yank their chain...over virtually everything...it's because Republican'ts know that Democrats will always allow them to get away with the crap they do. And Democrats never fail to live up to Republicans' expectations to help to do the Republicans' own dirty work.

      Even when Democrats win...they still cower.

  •  I've been busy (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eps62, cocinero, myboo, TexasTom, kareylou

    Explaining to doubter acquaintances in person, and to friends of FB friends online, about how the ACA has already saved me a bundle. Here's what I tell them:

    I am self-employed ( and under-employed), so I have HDLP insurance. This is, for now, the only way I can swing health insurance.

    Since the ACA went into effect, my premiums stopped increasing as dramatically from year to year as they had in the past. This is great.

    But a more concrete example of how the ACA saves me money occurred in the last few months, when I had my very first screening colonoscopy.

    Thanks to the ACA, I did not have to pay a sizable co-pay or deductible that I would otherwise would have had to pay.

    I also successfully challenged the physician's effort to charge me a sizable co-pay for his having removed a polyp during the procedure*.

    All together I saved over a thousand dollars.

    *Thanks to DKos for highlighting that clarification from HHS here:

    "The mind of a bigot is like the pupil of the eye; the more light you pour upon it, the more it will contract." Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

    by SNFinVA on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:23:30 AM PDT

  •  Yep, I'm one of them (7+ / 0-)

    I have a basic knowledge of what the thing is and what it's supposed to do. But I have no idea what I'm supposed to do to get in on it. And believe me I've been trying to find out for two years. I'm not even sure when this is going to kick in.

    A large part of that is because of the tediously ongoing efforts by the reptiles to repeal it and/or at least screw it up so badly that it's worthless. Another part is an almost complete lack of useful information that isn't in vague, convoluted gov-speak.

    Much to my surprise I'm officially a senior with "special circumstances" that were beyond my control. I'm on food stamps, although no cash assistance. My small savings has been depleted over the last two years. In a few weeks I'll start getting a itty bitty Social Security check. Hell I'm not even going to sign up for Part B Medicare in three years because it costs too much.

    So I'm supposed to buy health insurance from a corporation? I hear no. I hear that there will be "options" available for low income people like me.

    SWELL! Talk to me about them! And they'd better be awesome because $500 a month only goes so far and I have needs too.

    Meddle not in the affairs of dragons... for thou art crunchy and good with ketchup.

    by Pariah Dog on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:24:23 AM PDT

    •  You might qualify for Medicaid (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pariah Dog

      if your income is below 133% of the poverty level in your state. This assumes that your state will be accepting Medicaid expansion.

      Much of what's going to happen in 2014 is unclear because it depends on each state's participation in expanded Medicaid and an exchange. The feds are still ironing out the details. Some states have not done the work that needs to be done. Some states are deliberately dragging their feet, and some are flat out refusing to participate (so far).

      •  I'm in Ohio (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cocinero

        And I understand Kasich has issued a conditional acceptance of the exchanges. Not that I really understand what that means.

        As soon as the SS starts, I'll have to report the income to the food stamp people, so I plan on asking them about what I should do.

        Your last paragraph is exactly what I mean about there being no clear cut advice on what people need to do, and how that's greatly hampering the approval rates for the plan. How can you approve of something when everything is so up in the air?

        Meddle not in the affairs of dragons... for thou art crunchy and good with ketchup.

        by Pariah Dog on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 02:53:13 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Timing is simple (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pariah Dog

      The exchanges open in October 2013 for shopping, and the new coverage begins 1 January 2014.

      Have you applied for Medicaid? Sounds like you may well qualify, unless you have assets.

      •  See above (0+ / 0-)

        I have my house and some land, but everything else went poof a couple years ago (long story).

        I'm told by the SSA that I'll qualify for Medicaid, but I haven't applied yet. As soon as my benefits start I'll have to go talk to them anyway.

        Thanks to both of you for the advice.

        Meddle not in the affairs of dragons... for thou art crunchy and good with ketchup.

        by Pariah Dog on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 02:56:32 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  A failure of the government (6+ / 0-)

    to not get the message out clearly over all the fox noise.

  •  If Only..... (4+ / 0-)
    They don't like it, even though they don't know what it does: 57 percent say they don't know enough about it to understand how it might affect their own health insurance.
    ....there were some way to inform the public!  Perhaps invent boxes that, when dialed into a transmitter, is able to receive electronic information!  That could work.  Better yet, how about taking Gutenberg's invention and create regular and semi regular publications that will cover the pressing questions of the day!

    Oh wait....we've had that shit for decades (if not centuries) and people are still confused and bombarded by misinformation.  Maybe the problem lies with the corporations that own the messaging machination?  

    This space for rent -- Cheap!

    by jds1978 on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:25:25 AM PDT

    •  And a government that does indeed (7+ / 0-)

      have the ability to intervene and circumvent those corporations' machines and won't do it . . .

      "Lone catch of the moon, the roots of the sigh of an idea there will be the outcome may be why?"--from a spam diary entitled "The Vast World."

      by bryduck on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:27:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  And said boxes begot... (4+ / 0-)

      Dancing with the stars, Celebrity Apprentice, American Idol, etc.. These are the things the people watch. PBS Frontline....not so much.

      •  And THAT is where HHS (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eps62, cocinero, Caipirinha, jds1978, bryduck

        needs to run PSAs about Obamacare.  If you want to inform people you have to go to them, not expect they will come to you.  I used to do insurance and tax stuff at my school; about one in 3 teachers understood how any of it worked.  And we are talking people with multiple degrees.  If the effect is not immediate, people don't pay attention.

        •  Someone today used the analogy of how we (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          jds1978

          were informed almost every day for six months when we all needed to get some kind of cable adaption for our tvs.  

          Those alerts and informative commercials were on every five minutes.  Why can't the WH use the Teevee to do the same about the main benefits of the ACA--put informative ads on every fracking channel--including Fox? For starters.

          If the plutocrats begin the program, we will end it. -- Eugene Debs.

          by livjack on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 11:27:37 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  If only... nt (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jds1978

      When someone is impatient and says, "I haven't got all day," I always wonder, How can that be? How can you not have all day? George Carlin

      by msmacgyver on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:32:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The fault lies with incurious people (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eps62

      who are the majority of people. Researching is too much like work, hence DWTS.
      The fault also lies with democratic repulsion of any form of talking points.;-\

      "He went to Harvard, not Hogwarts." ~Wanda Sykes
      No representation without taxation. Rich and don't pay? Shut up.
      Blessinz of teh Ceiling Cat be apwn yu, srsly.

      by OleHippieChick on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:37:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  isn't that one of the things (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jm214, OleHippieChick, jds1978

        we're paying the government to do: tell us what this @#$%^&* bill is going to do for us and how we're supposed to get its benefits (if any)?

        (Is it time for the pitchforks and torches yet?)

        by PJEvans on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:50:28 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes, that's what I ask for in my other comments, (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          eps62

          some chewable talking point noms, PLEEEZE.
          You have to admit, though, that people don't read or look up things anymore. They just don't. Couple that with it being put forth by The Black Guy and it's a double whammy, although TBG has put it all up on the WH site. But JEEEZ you hafta read it.

          "He went to Harvard, not Hogwarts." ~Wanda Sykes
          No representation without taxation. Rich and don't pay? Shut up.
          Blessinz of teh Ceiling Cat be apwn yu, srsly.

          by OleHippieChick on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 10:05:43 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Paranoia Strikes Deep! (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            eps62, OleHippieChick

            For what it's worth...

            You have to admit, though, that people don't read or look up things anymore. Couple that with it being put forth by The Black Guy and it's a double whammy, although TBG has put it all up on the WH site. But JEEEZ you hafta read it.
            [Not snark] I'd be willing to bet that a significant percentage of Republicans, particularly the base variety, are actually afraid to actually go to the WH web site for fear of their data being collected.

            Paranoia is its own reward...

            You meet them halfway with love, peace and persuasion, and expect them to rise for the occasion ~ Van Morrison

            by paz3 on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 10:37:13 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  Not true (5+ / 0-)

        I've spent hours researching, and gotten nowhere, so I've given up until October. The bottom line is that until the exchanges are up and running, there is no information on what will be available at what cost. The regs on the bronze, silver, whatever plans haven't been completed yet, and the pricing will depend on whatever the insurance companies think they can extract, and there will be hundreds of options to choose from (like Medicare Part D only worse).

        It is a nightmare even for highly educated and incurably curious people. It is impossible for anyone else.

        •  Well, shit! Time to turn the screws for (0+ / 0-)

          better explanations. I tried to read it through but couldn't figure how it applies to me, if at all.
          We have to apply pressure for whatever we want. We have no lobbyists but us! The politmachine is so slick in some areas, so dense in others.

          "He went to Harvard, not Hogwarts." ~Wanda Sykes
          No representation without taxation. Rich and don't pay? Shut up.
          Blessinz of teh Ceiling Cat be apwn yu, srsly.

          by OleHippieChick on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 01:16:00 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  To be honest.... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        OleHippieChick

        ....most people do not have the time to research and neatly sum up the ACA.

        However, the major news corporations make it their alleged mission to neatly summarize policy and news events.  The onus is on them and the WH in regards to getting the facts straight regarding policy.

        This space for rent -- Cheap!

        by jds1978 on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 05:33:26 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  well, it's designed not to affect most people (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jds1978

      which I thought was one of its biggest flaws: not giving some benefit to the majority (for example, a public option available to everyone.)

      Since most people still get insurance through their employer, ACA doesn't affect them directly.

      Yes, there's a large minority that it does help (under-26, pre-existing conditions, uninsured, donut-hole, etc.), but it's reasonable for a majority to wonder how it helps them, because it doesn't directly.

      •  Ah, but what will employers do? (0+ / 0-)

        Seems to me highly likely that coverage through employers is likely to shrink drastically -- except where mandated by a union contract, and then only until the next negotiation. That isn't what the Obama Administration wants, but I think they've badly misjudged what will actually happen on the ground.

        It actually would probably make more sense financially for employers to bump up salaries a bit and let employees shop on their own for coverage.

        And the manipulation of terms of employment to take people out of the "mandatory coverage" category will be a whole new growth industry.

  •  The industry wants to keep them uninformed (8+ / 0-)

    I still see articles claiming "Price Shock Coming!!" as young people will be "forced" to pay higher premiums all because of "Obamacare!!" when we all know premiums never, ever rose before health care reform . . . and what's more, if the insurance companies tried to jack up young folks' premiums in order to keep old folks' premiums high (they are limited to a 3x age rating under the ACA), they would run into the "medical loss ratio" and have to issue refunds.

    But ignorance comes so much easier . . .

    And God said, "Let there be light"; and with a Big Bang, there was light. And God said "Ow! Ow My eyes!" and in a flash God separated light from darkness. "Whew! Now that's better. Now where was I. Oh yea . . ."

    by Pale Jenova on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:26:16 AM PDT

  •  It is complicated... (10+ / 0-)

    and I don't think Obama has done a good enough job selling it. I've spent a lot of time reading about it, and I still wouldn't say that I completely understand it.
    What people need to know is, skyrocketing health care costs are unsustainable, it's a ticking economic time bomb. We are on pace to spend 25% of our country's GDP in a decade (17% now). We MUST bend healthcare costs down, theoretically, the ACA can do that. Anyway you cut it, doing nothing AKA the GOP's tort reform, cross state line coverage, is not an option.

    •  Present it as a choice (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dasboot

      between the ACA and the GOP's repeal of the ACA.

      Republicans simply want to repeal the ACA and take us back to out-of-control increases in health care costs and insurance premiums. They want to take us back to egregious insurance company abuses where people who have paid premiums for years have their policy canceled when they get sick with a costly illness. They want to take us back to one-in-six Americans without health insurance, and those with pre-existing conditions no hope of getting affordable coverage. They want to take us back to families in bankruptcy because they can't pay medical bills. etc.

  •  Huge information blitz needed. Should be PSAs, (6+ / 0-)

    public service announcements. PSAs used to be on teevee all the time decades ago. The public airwaves and other quaint things. Now they'd prob be looked upon as propaganda, but they were for the public good. We used to be kept better informed.
    Nevertheless, I don't know what ACA does or will do for me. I don't know how or if Medicare will be affected and I'll be on Medicare in September. The fault is my own. I haven't researched it. I always research stuff but I'm just floating around at this point.
    So many others feign ignorance and absolutely will NOT bother to research any govt policies because The Black Guy. I'm slacking but others are lacking.
    Those ACA benefits needs to be spelled out simply and quickly and larrrrge. It should be made as much of a hoopla as the rollout of any great social program. I'm getting testy because this isn't happening.
    Hell, I'm testy because I have no confidence there's a cleaner team supposed to weed out bu$hCo. trolls and ringers and moles from the bowels of govt and justice, where they can wreck things at will because The Black Guy must be made to fail. I hope that's been considered all along. I'm not the high-paid farging genius.

    "He went to Harvard, not Hogwarts." ~Wanda Sykes
    No representation without taxation. Rich and don't pay? Shut up.
    Blessinz of teh Ceiling Cat be apwn yu, srsly.

    by OleHippieChick on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:31:06 AM PDT

    •  An all-out effort is needed (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Eric Nelson

      This will be a major issue in the 2014 election. The open senate seat is Iowa will be between Bruce Braley (D), who supports Obamacare, and likely candidate Steve King, who is an outspoken opponent of Obamacare. King defended his opposition to Obamacare in an op-ed published in Wednesday's Des Moines Register.

  •  I think you're letting the press off too easy (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PJEvans, a2nite, eps62, Eric Nelson

    IIRC, ALL the coverage was about the process, even up to the Supreme Court declaring it was constitutional. I'm beginning to think it's that the press didn't know how to explain it succinctly so they decided not to bother. Maybe if Modern Family did an episode about it that explained it.

    People are lazy.  Period.

    -7.75, -8.10; . . . Seneca Falls, Selma and Stonewall (h/t cooper888)

    by Dave in Northridge on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:33:58 AM PDT

  •  I believe we will start to see (6+ / 0-)

    the health insurance corporations and the hospitals start to inform the public about the law in order to gin up support. After all, they are the ones that stand to gain the most from it, financially speaking that is. Also, I seem to remember having read somewhere that there is money in the ACA budget starting in July in order for the Feds to start their own information campaign. These funds were not affected by the sequester.

    •  Real facts! Thank you motherlu. (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jm214, eps62, cocinero, myboo, Eric Nelson

      No one will be able to pay for health insurance from the insurance co's. There will have to be a single payer provision.
      Not one of us needs insurance, we all need health care. This vicious, unnecessary middleman will eventually be cut out of the deal. Then the hospitals should be shamed for their cruel pricing doohicky that makes a Q-tip $5.00. REFORM--->

      "He went to Harvard, not Hogwarts." ~Wanda Sykes
      No representation without taxation. Rich and don't pay? Shut up.
      Blessinz of teh Ceiling Cat be apwn yu, srsly.

      by OleHippieChick on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:45:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Sorry...AHA, not ACA...damn abbrevs (0+ / 0-)
  •  It's either unfortunate or kabuki that ACA (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eps62, cocinero

    goes into affect in 2014, the mid-term elections.

    The disinformation machine will be out in full force with $Millions to back them up.

    It's difficult to be happy knowing so many suffer. We must unite.

    by War on Error on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:37:56 AM PDT

  •  Hard to sell (7+ / 0-)

    I agree that the administration and the Democrats probably haven't done enough to sell the ACA, but I also recognize that it is a very tough task to do so.  Most people are appallingly ignorant about health insurance in general, to say nothing about a major change like this.  

    I talk to people all the time, educated professional types, who know little or nothing about what is or isn't in their health insurance.  They don't know about deductibles or co-pays or out-of-pocket limits or lifetime maximums or any of that stuff.  

    It's hard to sell the improvements of Obamacare when people don't know where they are now.  For example, under Obamacare there will no more yearly or lifetime maximums.  This is great news for everybody, but I bet many people don't even know that their current coverage is subject to a maximum.    Under Obamacare, out-of-pocket limits will be fixed at reasonable levels, but its hard to explain this when people don't even know what and out-of-pocket limit is.  

    I guess the basic problem is that people don't like to think about the implications of getting sick or injured, so they don't.  

    I also think the advantages will become much clearer once the law is implemented.  It's easy to demagogue an unknown.   Once a benefit exists, it will become and entitlement and a political sacred cow.  That is why the right is so terrified of universal health care, since they know that in the long run it will be a huge political winner for Democrats.  

  •  We must live in the dumbest country in the world (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eps62

    The know-nothing intellect of the American people never seizes to amaze me, i swear.

  •  ACA is only a step on the path to single payer (5+ / 0-)

    the disinformation will create a situation where we will all be grateful for creating a single-payer solution that transcends ACA

    Warning - some snark above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 Acedia is essentially a flight from the world that leads to not caring even that one does not care

    by annieli on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:42:48 AM PDT

  •  Messaging. Education. Detoxifying Negatives. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mr market, eps62, cocinero, Eric Nelson

    All that must be done.

    If people don't like something because of what it is NOT, then by golly, you've got a problem.

    We must be very certain of what the ACA IS and what it is not.

    Then DAYLIGHT those things. Flyers, Billboards, Radio, TV, and the Net.

    Otherwise, the opposition has a handle.

    Ugh. --UB.

    "Daddy, every time a bell rings, a Libertaria­n picks up his Pan Am tickets for the Libertaria­n Paradise of East Somalia!"

    by unclebucky on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:49:43 AM PDT

  •  I think in a lot of ways, this is the failure of (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eps62, Eric Nelson

    the media to accurately inform the public of the benefits in the law, instead of repeating Republican talking points about it.

    I've seen the media inform the public of flu epidemics, of places to go and precautions to take when a major storm is approaching, of medicine and food alerts, of automobile issues that pose a threat to safety, and yet they refuse to tell people that their kids can stay on their healthcare plans until they are 26 or that they can't be denied coverage due to pre-existing conditions, or information about new health clinics, due to the ACA, in their communities.

    The Obama administration has always been up against it from not only Republicans but the reticence of the media to inform the public of the plan's benefits.

    The good news is the ACA will not be repealed and, despite ignorance and propaganda, the public will come to learn more and more about it in the coming months and years, a fact which grates the Republicans and its various opposing factions to no end.  

  •  When it's an option (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eps62, Eric Nelson

    then you have "competition". And that does NOT necessarily mean lower rates. Nope. "Competition" (scare quotes) means both for-profit and monopolistic control of rates.

    When it's single payer universal and the "profit" is taken out of the system, we stand a better chance than now.

    Ugh. --UB.

    "Daddy, every time a bell rings, a Libertaria­n picks up his Pan Am tickets for the Libertaria­n Paradise of East Somalia!"

    by unclebucky on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:52:20 AM PDT

  •  I've been following this for years (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mr market, flowerfarmer, eps62, Caipirinha

    and I don't know what-all is in it, how or where to sign up, what to expect, or when the various provisions are supposed to kick in.
    How would someone who hasn't been following it know any more?

    There's a massive LACK of information coming out of government.

    (Is it time for the pitchforks and torches yet?)

    by PJEvans on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 09:53:27 AM PDT

    •  The government doesn't know yet (0+ / 0-)

      Much of what's going to happen in 2014 is unclear because it depends on each state's participation in expanded Medicaid and an exchange. The feds are still ironing out the details. Some states have not done the work that needs to be done. Some states are deliberately dragging their feet, and some are flat out refusing to participate (so far).

    •  I just wantt o know how much it will really cost (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kareylou

      me and what I will get for that cost.  I know we will be above the help line and I am scared that should my husband's company drop coverage for everyone, the cost will be so much that we will just have to opt to pay the fine rather than pay for something we can't afford.

  •  Communication is terrible, no one knows anything (4+ / 0-)

    Hell, my wife and I have been arguing about this for over a year, and we're both pretty liberal Dems: my employer-provided coverage told us a year and a half ago that they weren't offering our "Cadillac" plan to anyone anymore, and we now have $30 copays for ordinary doctor visits, $50 for specialists. We used to have no copays at all for office visits. She blames Obama and says it can't be a coincidence, the timing of all this. I say they're using it as an excuse to cut their own costs, and that it has nothing to do with the affordable care act. Bottom line, though, is that this happened to us in a year where one of our kids needed surgery and then physical therapy for a broken leg, and at $50 an ortho followup visit and $30 a PT visit, we paid WAY more out of pocket for health care in 2012 than we ever did before.

    And we're relatively smart, well-educated people who pay attention to the news and generally trust that Obama is trying to do the right thing -- take our exact situation and apply it to the millions of people who don't already have that outlook.

  •  "Organized, effective and well-publicized" (0+ / 0-)

    Snort.
    "The bright side" is that there are very popular provisions that the public doesn't know about..
    Snort.
    Jeez.

  •  This is a communication failure by the Obama Admin (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    flowerfarmer, eps62

    There is no way around it. They just have done a pathetic job on communicating and selling the package. Just terrible. They got killed politically on this, but worse than that, they are just failing the American people on letting them know how they will be helped.

    I find it very hard to understand. Could they not hire a PR firm and for a million dollars have a decent communication strategy they could then execute? Their communication plan seems like a complete and utter political and administrative failure.

    Give the people a choice between a Republican and a Republican and they will vote for the Republican every time - Harry S Truman

    by mr market on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 10:03:55 AM PDT

  •  There is an ongoing theme (0+ / 0-)

    that is captured here and in today's NYT piece on Obama losing ground on economic leadership.  The 'splainers in this admin. have been shitty from the get-go, preferring obliqueness to directness, and assuming their adversaries were not complete obstructionists.

    Obama has repeated lain down with the dogs, and the fleas now plague him.  If its in his nature to be a forceful leader on these issues, its time he sets it free.  After all, he's done with elected office, and legacy as it currently stands, will be rather milquetoasty if the status quo remains unchanged.

    The congress and r/w noise machine require that the Admin step up communications, and take no prisoners when dealing with the bullshit 'budget' and 'debt' issues.  If they will make it clear they're playing in a different game than the Republicans and Wall St., then the 'people' may discover that the 'understand' things better.  As it stands now, without forceful leadership, the next two years will be a positioning battle, with little or nothing getting done, and that only helps the R's, since O will be blamed one way or the other.

    Finding Fred A Memoir of Discovery @ smashwords.com/iTunes

    by Timothy L Smith on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 10:17:01 AM PDT

  •  We uninformed are learning (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Caipirinha, Carol in San Antonio

    But most of what I'm learning isn't good news. I'm learning that the CBO says that the subsidized exchanges will cost a lot more than they estimated even a year ago. [http://cbo.gov/...]
    I'm learning that there is great skepticism that these exchanges will exist when they are supposed to. I'm finding out that the Obama administration is now cautioning not to expect private healthcare premiums to go down, but more likely to continue to rise.

    "After extensive research, the administration said it was unwise to tell consumers that they could get “health insurance that fits your budget.” That message, it said, is “seen as highly motivational, but not as believable.”
    http://www.nytimes.com/...
    I'm discovering that there will be various yet-unpublicized fees and taxes that will contribute to making my insurance more expensive. I'm hearing that my mother's Medicare Advantage will be notably more pricey. I'm reading that businesses are putting plans to hire on hold, or are planning to reduce staff, in the face of both uncertainty and projected added costs.
     In fact, if there is much good news in this setup for me and my wife, I'm having a really hard time finding out what that is, beyond possibly a free pap smear and a "free" colonoscopy (actual cost dependent on your own insurance setup).
  •  The evil R's and their masters got another (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eps62

    mission accomplished.

    We need a better communications message, or if the rotten evil RW radical MSM would do their job instead of being well paid parrots, we would be better off.

    We just get bombarded with evil RW talking points, at least commericials are trying to sell something.

  •  Still a Step Backward (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kareylou

    It has some nice provisions, but the truth is that it delayed a solution to the problem, probably by decades. We still have for-profit health insurance. That's always going to be too costly, and it sucks money out of the parts of the economy where we need it. It's therefore delayed the recovery.

    By changing things to force more people into the for-profit system we just delayed fixing the problem and added to costs. The only feasible solution, in an economic sense, is a universal publicly-funded system. Instead, what we got was Democrats and Republicans combining to give us an expansion of the system that doesn't work.

    How is this system going to get the healthcare segment of the economy back down under 15% of GDP? It ain't.

  •  GOP Attacks are based on this ignorance (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cassandraX, eps62, Eric Nelson

    If you've seen the news about "Obamacare will kill Americans" in statements coming from Republicans, it's deliberate. As long as people don't know how it will benefit them, Republicans are working hard to discredit it before the provisions kick in. They want people to hear the lies - because in the absence of any pushback from Democrats, the lies will become the 'truth' everyone knows.

    This is how they have everyone thinking Social Security will have to be cut, Medicare will have to be dismantled. Repeat a lie often enough, loudly enough, drown out any opposing voices - and people will accept it as the truth.

    Democrats have to get over the idea that calling out lying liars is somehow impolite and counter productive. We need more Alan Graysons.

    "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

    by xaxnar on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 10:41:35 AM PDT

  •  Poll i want to see ..... (0+ / 0-)

    I know it's antithetical to the Corporate Owned Media mission statement, but it would be nice to see some actual/factual, useful information dissemination.

    Like maybe the difference in the number of people who are dissatisfied because it doesn't go far enough, and the number of people who are dissatisfied because "Rush sez it's jest another socialist power-grab by that secret-Muslim-Kenyan-Socialist/Fascist in the White House who ain't white."

  •  As long as the administration is complacent (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eps62

    about the release of useful information to the masses, the more confused this will become.  I still wonder why they did not hire folks to do neighborhood meetings and other open door discussions on the Obamacare.   You can look up stuff on the internets for sure, but that does not answer questions that a town hall will give.  This should be a matter of priority for the Democratic Party and it would go a long way in getting the message of the party out to the rest of the country as well.  I am tired of sending my money to the National Democrats and getting nothing in return but a choice of some Blue Dogs to represent the party.  I would rather give my dough to the state and have them do reachout coffee sessions for interested people.  I will tell you one thing, if it is during the day, you will get a buttload of old folks so you want this to be in the evening so working folks can come.  This is something that will work for the progressives as they will finally be able to say what a great deal this is for all Americans.  Coffee and cookies are not so expensive, what do you all think?

  •  I'm one of those confused/ignorant (3+ / 0-)

    and I read a lot about it and am generally good at crunching numbers, fine print, and all that.
    Why? There's just way too much uncertainty about what will actually happen.

    1. There's a lot of spam coming through and appearing as ads on websites that claims to be doing things because of the ACA, but it's malarky -- hard to sort out.
    2. There are a lot of anti-ACA people deliberately putting out false propaganda ("premiums skyrocketing due to ACA," "death panels," "emergency rooms will be forced to close," "no doctor will take Medicare or Medicaid" etc. etc.) that intentionally muddies the waters.
    3. Until I see actual insurance available and subsidies spelled out, I keep being told there will be some better options and I'll be able to afford them -- but I frankly don't believe it. I am especially skeptical about "affordability" for the 50-64-year-olds (that would be me), since the law allows them to charge me 3x what they charge my children. So if they're paying $250, I'm going to pay $750. That is NOT "affordable."
         Another example: The definition of "full-time" employee is based on hours worked. As an adjunct college professor, if they just look at classroom hours, no one will count as full-time (not even the salaried full professors) -- we just don't spend 40 hours a week in class, or even 31. (If you teach 3 3-credit courses, you are in the classroom 9 hours a week.) But I've been told they are NOT going to include the hours preparing, meeting with students, department meetings, and grading papers. So the employer mandate is going to be an absolute nightmare and lawyers' full employment act, and my prediction is that fewer people will end up covered through their jobs than are at present.
    4. The insurance companies are going to do their best to provide a lot less coverage, with higher deductibles and co-pays, for much higher premiums; I anticipate that the issues around actually getting your bills covered will get exponentially worse.
    5. Congress is doing its best to repeal the law, or at least defund it, so everything could change between now and 2014.

    In short, I'll believe it when I see it. Until then, if anyone asks me whether I understand what it will do, I will say "not really."

  •  I give the administration great credit (0+ / 0-)

    for all of the time, effort, and political capital they expended to pass the ACA.  But having said that, why oh why did they fail so miserably to explain the law to the American people; thus allowing the Republicans to define and demagogue it?  It didn't make sense three years ago; and it doesn't now.   As we get closer to 2014 when much of the law will be implemented, Obama and the Democrats should embark on a program to once and for all educate Americans on the true provisions of this important law. They should start today!

    •  Two sound bites: (0+ / 0-)

      ACA, AKA Obamacare, is to Medicare what the Bill of Rights is to the Constitution.

      The very wealthy pay such a high percentage of the income tax revenue, because the Federal Gov is not collecting royalties on the "peoples" mineral leases and tariffs are also no longer a major source of revenue, with all the "free trade" agreements.

  •  It's unpopluar because (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Carol in San Antonio

    it's deeply flawed, pro-corporate, pro-profit legislation that does little to address the fundamental problems of health care in this country.

    It's Rahm Emmanuel/DLC-inspired legislation.

    It's not reform of any sort.  It  protects and reinforces the very systems that continue to rip people off.  It tinkers around the edges while running away from doing any sort of the heavy lifting of legit reform.

    It's indicative of President Obama's first term: Huge "grand bargains" masquerading as reform.  But in reality it's simply ongoing management of the existing, corrupt, power structures.  Not challenging, much less actually changing even slightly, those corrupt structures.

    And if he doesn't evidence different choices in his second term, protecting the powerful and wealthy from any sort of legit "Change." will be his true legacy.

    What's wrong under Republicans is still wrong under Democrats.

    by gila on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 04:46:20 PM PDT

  •  I bet most of that is because (0+ / 0-)

    For a large group of people nothing has changed.

    They are still doing without health care, with no idea if it will ever happen for them. It's been so long with no change for them, no expanded Medicaid, or anything.

    In fact, the costs have been going up for them, and they have been having to do without, when they can't find decent jobs to pay for health care.

    It's taken too long to kick in, and there is so much uncertainty because the Republicans in the states are fooling around, trying to appear as though they will be able to block it, and generally making everyone think it isn't going to help them. Look at what is happening in Arkansas and Florida, for instance.

    The working poor are seeing that, and figuring that, as with just about everything, they aren't gettin' any.

    Women create the entire labor force. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Sympathy is the strongest instinct in human nature. - Charles Darwin

    by splashy on Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 06:36:00 PM PDT

  •  about those tax credits to small businesses (0+ / 0-)

    little known fact is that the sequester has removed them, at least for now. Even the form that covered it was pulled back (after originally being released).

    http://www.irs.gov/...

    The sequester works in mysterious ways, and the Republicans are counting on that, I guess.

    It is unfortunate that the ACA is such a hard thing to grasp, but perhaps unavoidable due to the tack it took - basically throwing the kitchen sink, minus a single-payer (or even a public option, for that matter), at the problem. Hopefully the conversation will continue on to ACA 2.0, (Improved) Medicare For All!

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site