July 29, 2009
What To Ask Your Congressperson About Obamacare (Part 3 of 7)
"What good is reading the bill if it's a thousand pages and you don't have two days and two lawyers to find out what it means after you read the bill?"
House Judiciary Chairman John Conyers (D-Mich.) said this during a speech at a National Press Club luncheon.
Here's the third installment in a series of questions you can ask your member of the House of Representatives concerning H.R. 3200 - also known as Obamacare.
The entire bill can be read here. This website will help you find ways to contact your congressperson's office.
If your Representative is undecided or favors Obamacare, call and ask for someone knowledgeable about the bill. Ask your question(s) and then considering entering what you hear in the comment section of the American Thinker.
Question 10: According to Section 203, Benefits Package Levels, "The Commissioner shall specify the benefits to be made available under Exchange-participating health benefits plans during each plan year, consistent with subtitle C of title I of this section." (Are you getting a feel for the power of the "Commish"?)
It continues, "The Commissioner may not enter into a contract with a QHBP offering entity (qualified health benefits plan offered by a private entity) under section 204(c) for the offering of an Exchange-participating health benefits plan in a service area unless the following requirements are met:"(then the three levels of "Basic Plan," "Enhanced Plan," and "Premium Plan" cascade). If the QHBP offers a Basic Plan, it can offer one Enhanced Plan "in a service area." If it offers one Enhanced Plan it can offer one Premium Plan "in a service area."
So, what's a "service area"? On page 13 it seems to mean, with respect to health insurance coverage, what the QHBP offering entity offers both within and outside the Health Insurance Exchange, in compliance with State laws. (If your neighbor is a lawyer in the healthcare insurance industry, you might summon him/her for confirmation.)
SO, isn't this a little, or actually a lot, like the federal government telling Government Motors (AKA General Motors) what kind of cars to build? (If the retort is "How so?" you might respond with "How is it not?")
[You might consider calling the for-profit, pro-Obamacare, AARP at 1-888-687-2277 to ask what impact this will have on insurance options available for the elderly. If the retort is "What makes you think it will result in a rationing of health care?" you might respond with "What makes you think it won't?"]
Question 11: (Stay with me on this one, folks.) According to Section 205(c)(3), Automatic Enrollment Of Medicaid Eligible Individuals Into Medicaid, "The Commissioner shall provide for a process under which an individual who is described in section 202(d)(3) and has not elected to enroll in an Exchange-participating health benefits plan is automatically enrolled under Medicaid."
The aforementioned Section 202(d)(3) reads, "An individual who is a non-traditional Medicaid eligible individual (as defined in section 205(c)(4)(C)) in a State may be an Exchange-eligible individual if the individual was enrolled in a qualified health benefits plan, grandfathered health insurance coverage, or current group health plan during the 6 months before the individual became a non-tradition Medicaid eligible individual."
The immediately aforementioned Section (c)(4)(C) states that "The term ‘non-traditional Medicaid eligible individual' means a Medicaid eligible individual who is not a traditional Medicaid eligible individual."
Isn't that helpful? It's like saying that a traditional relationship is one that is not a non-traditional relationship.
SO, besides the fact that I'd be enrolled into Medicaid when I'm eligible, whether I want to be or not, was this bill written to intentionally befuddle common citizens who try to make sense out of how billions and trillions of their tax dollars are being spent?
Question 12: According to Section 223(f), Limitations On Review, "There shall be no administrative or judicial review of a payment rate or methodology established under this section or under section 224 (Modernized Payment Initiatives And Delivery System Reform)."
SO, as to the pricing of healthcare services and procedures, it's "like it or lump it." If the U.S. Postal Service raises the price of a first class stamp to $87.47, we have the option of using FedEx, UPS, or some other carrier who sets their own price competitively. In healthcare, it'll be one price, period. Right? No judicial review against a monopoly.
Call your congressperson's office and ask questions. Silence communicates nothing.
July 29, 2009
What To Ask Your Congressperson About Obamacare (Part 4 of 7)
Here’s the 4th installment in a series of questions you can ask your member of the House of Representatives concerning H.R. 3200 – also known as Obamacare.
The entire bill can be read here. This website will help you find ways to contact your congressperson’s office.
If your Representative is undecided or favors Obamacare, call and ask for someone knowledgeable about the bill. Ask your question(s) and then considering entering what you hear in the comment section of American Thinker.
Question 13: According to Section 223, Payment Rates For Items And Services, “The Secretary [of the Treasury] shall establish payment rates for the public health insurance option for services and health care providers consistent with this section and may change such payment rates in accordance with section 224.”
Also, according to Section 225, Provider Participation, there are two schedules of payment terms for physicians. Preferred Physicians “agree to accept the payment rate established under section 223 (without regard to cost-sharing) as the payment in full.” And, Participating, Non-Preferred Physicians “who agree not to impose charges…that exceed the ratio permitted under section 1848(g)(2)(C) of the Social Security Act.
Section 1848(g)(2)(C) reads: “(C) After 1992.—For physicians' services furnished in a year after 1992, the 'limiting charge' shall be 115 percent of the recognized payment amount under this part for nonparticipating physicians or for nonparticipating suppliers or other persons.”
SO, Timmy Geithner will be responsible for deciding how much physicians make? (How does he do that when he can’t accurately calculate his own taxes?) What’s the projected cumulative impact on the income of U.S. physicians?
Question 14: Section 59B, Tax On Individuals Without Acceptable Health Care Coverage, “In the case of any individual who does not met the requirements of subsection (d) at any time during the taxable year, there is hereby imposed a tax equal to 2.5 percent of the excess of (1) the taxpayers’ modified adjusted gross income for the taxable year, over (2) the amount of gross income specified in sections 6012(a)(1) with respect to the taxpayer.”
SO, why is this plan sometimes referred to with the words “health care choices” when my only choices are to comply or pay a tax penalty? Exactly what are these “choices”?
Question 15: According to Section 59M (p. 171), “(2) Nonresident Alien. Subsection (a) [pertaining to the tax on individuals without acceptable health care coverage] does not apply to any individual who is a non-resident alien.”
SO, who pays for the health care for those in the U.S. on J-1 and F-1 visas? We citizen taxpayers?