Surprise, surprise

Well, busy busy, but here goes. First our Advocate does inform us this day that the Feds are going to take tax money from this state and give it to other states that are more deserving. They don’t put it like that, of course, but that is the impact of what is reported: “Race to the top” won’t include Louisiana.

Ahem. So I guess we stay at the bottom. Now, it seems Tennessee got $500 million and Delaware got $100 million – out of 4.5 Billion – leaving some $3.9 Billion unspent. Good for education no doubt.

Now, not only didn’t we “win” our own money back, but under “new rules” our “chance of winning” $314 million has been decreased to the chance of winning only $175 million. Swell for the Feds and any other state, but sucky for Louisiana. Oh well, too bad, we lose. And to think, as I recall, there are two bright youngsters earning $70,000 a year putting together the grants. Giving that they failed, and now we can only win half the amount in the next round of the “contest” for our own money, do they get their salaries cut in half too? Hmmm.

Meanwhile, at: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100330/ap_on_he_me/us_health_care_age_matters

By CARLA K. JOHNSON, AP Medical Writer – Mon Mar 29, 8:47 pm ET [what is a “medical writer”?] [the italics is the mush]

CHICAGO – Under the health care overhaul, young adults who buy their own insurance will carry a heavier burden of the medical costs of older Americans — a shift expected to raise insurance premiums for young people when the plan takes full effect.

Oops! I guess Young Obamamaniacs are going to get stiffed – and pay for older people they don’t know.

Beginning in 2014, most Americans will be required to buy insurance or pay a tax penalty.

Most of us, yes; the elite, no. How sweet! Buy from the evil insurance companies [evil by presidential statements over and over again] or pay a “tax penalty.” Actually, it’s a “fine” for what is going to be essentially “criminal” activity, and thus without any due process, court of law, or formal charges levied or any right to appeal the decision, each lower-class [that is, not the exempt elite] peon will be fined for not buying something. Yah, that’s sounds good for America. Basically the criminalization of the entire populace.

That’s when premiums for young adults seeking coverage on the individual market would likely climb by 17 percent on average, or roughly $42 a month, according to an analysis of the plan conducted for The Associated Press. The analysis did not factor in tax credits to help offset the increase.

Well, so the president said health care costs will go down – and his peanut gallery does put the lie to that. Now, why not compute the rest of the factors? Wouldn’t that be real math? Real numbers? You know, what everyone but the AP and the Government does, figure every penny. Nope, still a guess.

The higher costs will pinch many people in their 20s and early 30s who are struggling to start or advance their careers with the highest unemployment rate in 26 years.

Nothing says jobs and growth, getting on in life and starting a family than the wholesale screwing of those who need jobs, like growth, want to start a life and a family – you know, Democrats looking out for the little guy!

Consider 24-year-old Nils Higdon. The self-employed percussionist and part-time teacher in Chicago pays $140 each month for health insurance. But he’s healthy and so far hasn’t needed it.

Nothing like buying stuff you don’t need!

The law relies on Higdon and other young adults to shoulder more of the financial load in new health insurance risk pools. So under the new system, Higdon could expect to pay $300 to $500 a year more. Depending on his income, he might also qualify for tax credits.

Poor Nils, as we shall see. He’s a musician! The very sort of job which Pelosi says we should be able to become, a bunch of musically driven navel gazers. Too bad, Nils, you’ll have to get a real job, if you can find one.

At issue is the insurance industry’s practice of charging more for older customers, who are the costliest to insure. The new law restricts how much insurers can raise premium costs based on age alone.

Insurers typically charge six or seven times as much to older customers as to younger ones in states with no restrictions. The new law limits the ratio to 3-to-1, meaning a 50-year-old could be charged only three times as much as a 20-year-old.

Which means no matter how the numbers add up – no, wait, they won’t. So something’s got to give. Either the older folks will get less health care or the younger folks will pay more. Of course, our intrepid AP won’t even hazard a guess. Surprise to come!

The rest will be shouldered by young people in the form of higher premiums.

Yep, there is it – pay more you young’uns! This will of course help the young to get ahead in the world. I guess.

Higdon wonders how his peers, already scrambling to start careers during a recession, will react to paying more so older people can get cheaper coverage.

Does he wonder, now? Hmmm. I suppose they’ll be miffed.

“I suppose it all depends on how much more people in my situation, who are already struggling for coverage, are expected to pay,” Higdon says.

But wait, Nils, you’ll find out soon enough. Pelosi does guarantee not only will you find out – but you’ll love it!

He’d prefer a single-payer health care system and calls age-based premiums part of the “broken morality” of for-profit health care.

Ok, so he’s a self-employed whatever, crassly wishing for profit. The broken moralist does decry profit for some folks, but demands, no, nay, will have to demand more, for himself the right to make profit. Can you say hypocrite? And what is this “single payer”? Oh yeah, that means that instead of buying $400 bucks more in insurance from some immoral profit maker, he’ll pay $400 more in taxes to the government so that the government will make the profit. Or does Nils think that somehow the government will bring in less than it pays out? And thus operate at a loss until the national bankruptcy? Hmm, no answer from Nils on that conundrum.

But on average, people younger than 35 who are buying their own insurance on the individual market would pay $42 a month more, according to an analysis by Rand Health, a research division of the nonpartisan Rand Corp.

What is “non-partisan” in this case? Would it just be a group who counts all the numbers rather than some of the numbers? Beats me. Still, the youth of America will pay more, and more, and of course, given the track record of all government programs, will cost more and more. Oh well, the youth wanted Obama, they got him.

The analysis, conducted for The Associated Press, examined the effect of the law’s limits on age-based pricing, not other ways the legislation might affect premiums, said Elizabeth McGlynn of Rand Health.

OK, once again, why bother to look at all the scenarios, when we can just look at what are the best numbers. The ones that won’t really scare the bejesus out of anyone. Still, those numbers are coming.

Jim O’Connor, an actuary with the independent consulting firm Milliman Inc., came up with similar estimates of 10 to 30 percent increases for young males, averaging about 15 percent. “Young males will be hit the hardest,” O’Connor says, because they have lower health care costs than young females and older people who go to doctors more often and use more medical services.

Nothing like a bunch of angry young men paying for everyone else. Those hit hardest are always miffed, no? Oh yeah, that’s right, they’ll be unemployed. They don’t need to worry at all!

Predicting exactly how much any individual’s insurance premium would rise or fall is impossible, experts say, because so much is changing at once. But it is possible to isolate the effect of the law’s limits on age-based pricing.

What? You mean this carefully crafted plan with an exact price tag set by law is impossible to figure out? How did this happen?

Some groups predict even higher increases in premiums for younger individuals — as much as 50 percent, says Landon Gibbs of ShoutAmerica, a Tennessee-based nonprofit aimed at mobilizing young people on health care issues, particularly rising costs.

So Landon Gibbs is mobilizing young folks, eh? How so? For or against the health care fiasco a-coming? Is Landon mobilizing for or against higher premiums? No word is given either way, on what would, to me, be a rather important point.

Some groups predict even higher increases in premiums for younger individuals — as much as 50 percent, says Landon Gibbs of ShoutAmerica, a Tennessee-based nonprofit aimed at mobilizing young people on health care issues, particularly rising costs.

Nothing like the same sentence twice in such a craftily written medical article by a medical writer.

Gibbs, 27, a former White House aide under President George W. Bush, founded the bipartisan group with former hospital chain executive Clayton McWhorter, now chairman of a private equity firm.

Well, bipartisan? If this is the case must be against the “reform” since the opposition was, is, will be, bipartisan. Right? Hmmm…

McWhorter finances the organization. The group did not oppose health care reform, but stressed issues like how health care inflation threatens the future of Medicare.

Oh, so it’s not opposition, so I guess they like those higher premiums and future-killing changes. Nice. And, um, who causes health care inflation? Oh yeah, the government. No point in opposing that. Is there?

“We don’t want to make this a generational war, but we want to make sure young adults are informed,” Gibbs says.

What does this mean? Hmm, the generational war has started since the elderly now have the incentive to always demand more care, hence more money, and the youth will pay for it, or else. Nope, no war there. No doubt someone thinks this ancestor worship, ok, just ancestor support, is the kumbaya moment the country needs.

Young people who supported Barack Obama in 2008 may come to resent how health care reform will affect them, Gibbs and others say. Recent polls show support among young voters eroding since they helped elect Obama president.

Well, uh oh, oops, dang and darnet looks what’s happening – the blind will have the scales pulled from their eyes as they notice they’ve been screwed. Obama’s in for a heap big trouble.

Jim Schreiber, 24, was once an Obama supporter but now isn’t so sure. The Chicagoan works in a law firm and has his own tea importing business.

Ironic, a tea importing business! One wonders when he’ll throw his first party. And why does a lawyer need a second job? Oh, good, though, he has it, for he’ll pay more and more… for nothing!

He pays $120 a month for health insurance, “probably pure profit for my insurance company,” he says.

And he’s a lawyer? Educated? Premiums aren’t pure profit at all, they are pooled resources to pay big claims by the pooled small payments. The profits are still the same roughly 2 to 3 percent that insurance companies are given by the insurance regulatory agency in his state. In fact, as a lawyer he should be well aware that no insurance company makes 100% profit. How absurd. What kind of law does he practice?

Without a powerhouse lobbying group, like AARP for older adults, young adults’ voices have been muted, he says. He’s been discouraged by the health care debate. “It has made me disillusioned with the Democrats,” he said.

Muted? Voices muted? Heavens no! You all screamed for Obama, who gave you what you wanted – health care “reform.” Peshaw, doesn’t he know that the Democratic party is the voice of the youth of America today? What more powerful lobbying group than the majority party and the president who are running around the nation saying not only the opposite of what the numbers show, but are saying that anyone who questions the wisdom is some sort of reactionary un-American right winger. He’s a lawyer and now he figures out it’s mush? I wouldn’t want him to argue my case; he’d be unprepared.

Ari Matusiak, 33, a Georgetown University law student, founded Young Invincibles with other Obama campaign volunteers to rally youth support for health care overhaul.

Now, see, there’s the big lobbying group for the youth! No worries. Pay or go to jail, you youthful heathens for new-found love of liberty. This is what you wanted! You got it. Shut up.

Age rating fails as a wedge issue because the pluses of the new law outweigh the minuses for young adults, Matusiak says. “And we’re not going to be 26, 27, 33 forever,” Matusiak says. “Guess what? We’re going to be in a different demographic soon enough.”

Duh! Tell us more oh Ari – it’s a benefit because you’ll pay more for less now, and it’ll work out in 30 or 40 years, if the system isn’t bankrupt by then. Sweet to pay now for gain later – why, it’s an investment! On solid ground, like Social Security. Oh, that’s right. Never mind. Sorry. Not going to be there in the future for those who pay today.

Nationally representative surveys for the Kaiser Family Foundation have consistently found that young adults are more likely than senior citizens to say they would be willing to pay more so that more Americans could be insured. But whether that generosity will endure isn’t clear.

The last sentence is priceless understatement. I’d wager for the end of generosity, oh, any day now. Though they need not worry, they’ll be unemployed, and thus not have to pay. No worries here either.

“The government approach of — we’ll just make someone get health care and pay for someone else — definitely NOT what I want,” says Melissa Kaupke, 28, who is uninsured and works from her Nashville home.

Now there’s some gumption! Go Melissa? Join a TEA party near you!

In Chicago, Higdon says he supports the principles of the health care overhaul, even if it means he will pay more as a young man to smooth out premium costs for everyone.

He is of course more than welcome to donate whatever he wants to whomever he wants, but he has no moral right to tell any of his peers to join the kooky train to bankruptcy, that’s for sure.

“Hopefully I’ll be old someday, barring some catastrophic event. And the likelihood of me being old is less if I don’t have a good health plan.”

His last statement is absolutely worthless. There is no evidence possible to be gathered that would show that he will or will not live to some age or another without or without health care. Indeed, he could have the finest health care free from God himself, and still run into a wall at 70 mph and put the kabosh to that. More amazingly, having paid all that money, it will be lost immediately, given to someone else. What a waste for him. Or he could have no health plan and pay for what he needs when he needs it (aka shopping) and still live to a ripe old age without a plan whatsoever. Any scenario in between is possible, too. Paying for a plan no more guarantees long life than paying for something in cash when needing it. But I suppose that’s what happens when you let a precussionist think, for his brains have been apparently pounded out of his cranium, filled with emotional claptrap. Oh well, he’ll hopefully learn. Give me a beat now, it’s just rock and roll until the T-bills are taken away.

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