A reader sent me an email early this morning with a link to this Pro Publica story – Loyal Obama Supporters, Canceled by Obamacare. It’s hard to resist schadenfreude when you read stuff like:
San Francisco architect Lee Hammack says he and his wife, JoEllen Brothers, are “cradle Democrats.” They have donated to the liberal group Organizing for America and worked the phone banks a year ago for President Obama’s re-election.
Since 1995, Hammack and Brothers have received their health coverage from Kaiser Permanente, where Brothers worked until 2009 as a dietitian and diabetes educator. “We’ve both been in very good health all of our lives – exercise, don’t smoke, drink lightly, healthy weight, no health issues, and so on,” Hammack told me.
The couple — Lee, 60, and JoEllen, 59 — have been paying $550 a month for their health coverage — a plan that offers solid coverage, not one of the skimpy plans Obama has criticized. But recently, Kaiser informed them the plan would be canceled at the end of the year because it did not meet the requirements of the Affordable Care Act. The couple would need to find another one. The cost would be around double what they pay now, but the benefits would be worse.
Awwwww. Sucks when karma runs over your dogma, doesn’t it?
Hammack recalled his reaction when he and his wife received a letters from Kaiser in September informing him their coverage was being canceled. “I work downstairs and my wife had a clear look of shock on her face,” he said. “Our first reaction was clearly there’s got to be some mistake. This was before the exchanges opened up. We quickly calmed down. We were confident that this would all be straightened out. But it wasn’t.”
Do tell. I guess he was in favor of Obamacare before he found out that he, personally, would be paying for it.
But wait! It gets better!
In a speech in Boston last week, President Obama said those receiving cancellation letters didn’t have good insurance. “There are a number of Americans — fewer than 5 percent of Americans — who’ve got cut-rate plans that don’t offer real financial protection in the event of a serious illness or an accident,” he said.
“Remember, before the Affordable Care Act, these bad-apple insurers had free rein every single year to limit the care that you received, or use minor preexisting conditions to jack up your premiums or bill you into bankruptcy. So a lot of people thought they were buying coverage, and it turned out not to be so good.”
What is going on here? Kaiser isn’t a “bad apple” insurer and this plan wasn’t “cut rate.” It seems like this is a lose-lose for the Hammacks….
What’s going on here? Obama LIED. Again. And it is a “lose-lose” situation.
But here’s the pullquote for me:
“In a few cases, we are able to find coverage for them that is less expensive, but in most cases, we’re not because, in sort of pure economic terms, they are people who benefited from the current system … Now that the market rules are changing, there will be different people who benefit and different people who don’t.”
“There’s an aspect of market disruption here that I think was not clear to people,” (Kaiser Permanente spokesman Chris) Stenrud acknowledged. “In many respects it has been theory rather than practice for the first three years of the law; folks are seeing the breadth of change that we’re talking about here.”
In theory, there’s no difference between theory and practice. In practice, there is. For the Left, it isn’t results that matter, it’s intention. Read on:
So what is Hammack going to do? If his income were to fall below four times the federal poverty level, or about $62,000 for a family of two, he would qualify for subsidies that could lower his premium cost to as low as zero. If he makes even one dollar more, he gets nothing.
That’s what he’s leaning toward — lowering his salary or shifting more money toward a retirement account and applying for a subsidy.
Wait – a LIBERAL is threatening to “Go Galt”? And I have to object here. Earlier in the piece the author states that Hammack and Brothers make not much more than four times the federal poverty level, or “about $62,000 for a family of two.” In San Francisco. And he’s an architect. One: How does a couple live on $62k in San Francisco, and Two: If he’s an architect, what does he design, playground equipment?
“We’re not changing our views because of this situation, but it hurt to hear Obama saying, just the other day, that if our plan has been dropped it’s because it wasn’t any good, and our costs would go up only slightly,” he said. “We’re gratified that the press is on the case, but frustrated that the stewards of the ACA don’t seem to have heard.”
Or care. And you’re lefties from San Francisco. I wouldn’t expect you to change your views if Obama himself put the muzzle of a re-educator to your skull and pulled the trigger. Or as one commenter put it:
…they would follow Obama off a cliff, then thank him when at the bottom, he finished them off with a bayonet.
There you go talking about “death panels” again. Perhaps they should donate $500,000 to Organizing for America. Maybe then they can get a waiver, too.
Oh, and by all means, read the comments to the piece.