Obamacare Rumors that JUST WON’T DIE! (Part 2)

Today I will start off immediately continuing my post from yesterday on Obamacare rumors and half-truths that seem to be persistent.

socialismObamacare is socialism!:

I think to refute this statement, we must first ask what socialism really is, then we can see if it applies to the Affordable Care Act. So… What is socialism? Let’s just use the basic definition of socialism:

Socialism: An economic theory or system in which the means of production, distribution, and exchange are owned by the community collectively, usually through the state. It is characterized by production for use rather than profit, by equality of individual wealth, by the absence of competitive economic activity, and, usually, by government determination of investment, prices, and production levels.

Does Obamacare fit this definition?

Are the means of production of insurance owned solely by the government?

No… Insurance is still produced and provided by private insurance carriers.

Are the means of distribution and exchange owned solely by the government?

Some may say the marketplaces are controlling the distribution, but the answer is still no. The Affordable Care Act simply provides a place where private insurance companies can distribute their own policies. You can still purchase insurance plans directly from websites like bluecross.com or sign up for policies provided by your employer.

Is the Affordable Care Act production for use rather than profit?

The answer again, is no. Private insurance companies are still the primary source for health insurance, and they certainly aren’t doing it for free.

Is the Affordable Care Act creating equality of individual wealth?

Certainly not… The insurance companies are still making record profits. The only thing this is providing is basic health care for almost everyone.

Is there an absence of competitive economic activity?

No, the private insurance companies are still competing with each other for your business?

controlDoes the Affordable Care Act give the government the power to determine investment, prices, and production levels of health insurance?

No, it does not.  While the ACA does set minimum standards for health care coverage, makes it illegal to deny coverage for preexisting conditions, and sets caps on how much insurance providers can raise rates on people per year, this still does not meet the basic definition of socialism. 

So now we see that the Affordable Care Act in no way fits the definition of socialism. Medicare and Medicaid may be socially provided programs, and are part of the ACA, but that doesn’t mean, in any way, that the ACA is socialism. Anyone that says it is, is playing on old embedded fears of Communism in order to bolster their political agenda.

Obamacare is causing insurance premiums to skyrocket!:

I will have to admit that this is partially true. There are states where insurance premiums are skyrocketing…. Now let’s take a look at what a CNN article has to say about this issue:

While many residents in New York and California may see sizable decreases in their premiums, Americans in many places could face significant increases if they buy insurance through state-based exchanges next year. That’s because these people live in states where insurers were allowed to sell bare-bones plans and exclude the sick, which has kept costs down. Under Obamacare, insurers must offer a package of essential benefits — including maternity, mental health and medications — and must cover all who apply. But more comprehensive coverage may lead to more expensive insurance plans.

Under Obamacare, all Americans must have insurance coverage starting in 2014 or face penalties of $95 or 1% of family income, whichever is greater. Enrollment in the exchanges begins October 1, with coverage kicking in in January. Plans will come in four tiers, ranging from bronze to platinum. Some lightly regulated states, including Indiana, Ohio, Florida and South Carolina, have recently released preliminary rate information highlighting steep price increases. Unlike the blue states of California and New York, these are Republican-led states that have strongly opposed the Affordable Care Act, as Obamacare is officially known.”

rocketSo, while it may be true that rates in some states are “skyrocketing” there are various reasons, many of which could have been prevented. One reason being that many of these states offered “bare-bones” (as the article put it) plans that basically covered nothing, and in fact didn’t even meet the minimum coverage required by the Affordable Care Act (which isn’t that much, really), and they also refused to cover anyone with preexisting conditions. The next reason, and this is a big one, is that many of the states seeing high rate increases are Republican-led states. What a “surprise” that the few people signing up for insurance in the Republican controlled states, where the anti-Obamacare propaganda machine was running full-force (or should I said “fool”-force), are seeing skyrocketing rate increases and high premiums. For Obamacare to work like it’s supposed to, it requires people to sign up and for their respective state governments to cooperate.  Let’s not forget that many of these states are also refusing the medicare / medicaid subsidies which is leaving even more people out of luck.

One last thing that many people are forgetting when they see their quoted premiums is that they most likely will qualify for significant federal subsidies to help pay for their policies, and if they don’t qualify for subsidies, then they have to be making pretty good money, seeing as how a single person making less than roughly $45,000 a year qualifies for one.  Chances are, if they are making more than $45,000 a year, then they are a full-time worker and their employer is required to provide health coverage anyway.   Which leads me to my next rumor.  

joblessObamacare is destroying full-time jobs!:

This claim is actually false. Many reports are showing that part-time work is actually decreasing while full-time work is increasing.

According to the BLS household survey, part-time jobs fell 594,000 in September, while full-time workers were up 691,000.”

Ben Casselman of the Wallstreet Journal stated:

“The share of part-timers who say they usually work between 30 and 34 hours at their main job has been roughly flat over the past three years, at about 28%. (September data aren’t yet available.) If anything, it’s actually risen in the past year, though the change has been minor. The share working just under 30 hours has indeed risen somewhat, but the share working under 25 hours has fallen—suggesting that employers are giving part-timers more hours, rather than cutting full-timers’ hours back. Put another way: If the Labor Department used the same definition of “part-time” as the health law, its data would show no increase in part-time work over the past year.” (Link to the article to follow…)

I know that these two short blog entries do not address all of the Republican rhetoric being thrown around, but I hope that it will at least help some people see that not all of it is true, and much of it is at least partially distorted. The information is out there for anyone willing to look.

Written By: James Garcia (11/10/13)

http://money.cnn.com/2013/08/06/news/economy/obamacare-premiums/ (CNN Article on skyrocketing premiums…)

http://www.businessinsider.com/the-obamacare-part-time-jobs-myth-2013-10 (Business Insider article on part-time jobs myth…)

6 thoughts on “Obamacare Rumors that JUST WON’T DIE! (Part 2)

  1. It really is difficult to figure out what the truth is through all the misinformation. The spins and slants and half-truths are bad enough, but we lack a media we can trust to dig past the bs.

    1. That is true for the most part, but I think the conservative media outlet is FAR worse, especially Fox. I used to watch them when I was a conservative, but you can only have lies pointed out so many times with factual evidence to back it up before you start to question what you’ve believed for so long… I try to look stuff up for myself now. If a poll or a study is cited, I’ll go and look at what it says myself. I think that is the only way we can stay informed. That and check out foreign news sources as well. I’m sure we don’t even have access to half of the truth, but some is better than none.

      1. Yeah, it’s frustrating. I still believe in libertarian and conservative principles, but I am leery of party politics. Christians are little more regarded than useful idiots by Republicans, who demagogue “Christian values” in order to maintain absolute control over a huge monolithical voting block in much the same way the Democrats do to the African Americans and other minorities.

        In retrospect, I can see little difference in results between the two parties. They both “advocate” issues but never do anything substantial, in order to keep their devotees fanatical with promises to “continue the fight.” Abortion, Civil Rights, Gay Rights, etc. These will always be “unresolved” or “in danger” unless you “vote for us!”

        Abortion has always been a sticking point with me, because it’s murder of the unborn. But I no longer consider it as an issue, because I realize I’m being manipulated. “Women’s right to choose” will never be in danger, either, yet this fear is always trumpeted to garner loyalty fervency. We are considered sheep. It’s sad. I’m sick of it.

      2. I’m not sure I quite agree on a few things… But I’m open to discussion. As for me, I used to believe in what I thought were conservative principles, but lately “conservative principles” seem to unjustly favor straight, male, white, and rich, which is why you don’t see a slew of African Americans, Latinos, Asians, or women (with the exception of Palin and Bachmann, who are both slightly unhinged…) running with the Republican party. Occasionally you will get an African American that the Republican party marches out so they can say “See! We’re not completely racist! We have a black guy in our party!” But he eventually sort of… fades into the background to be replaced by the likes of Mitt Romney or John McCain. As for the statement “Abortion, Civil Rights, Gay Rights, etc. These will always be “unresolved” or “in danger” unless you “vote for us!”
        -It seems that you are implying that these aren’t truly issues… But these things are still being touted by the Democrats because they are, in fact, still major issues. Gay marriage, for instance, is only legal in 16 states, with the other 34 states banning it. This is both a gay rights and civil rights issue. Is it really the majorities right to say whether or not a responsible, loving, couple, regardless of the gender, can or can’t get married because THEIR religion says so? Is it really right for an employer to be able to fire their employee for no other reason than that they’re gay? I know you’ve said you agree ENDA needed to happen on my other post, I’m just trying to point out that gay rights is still in fact a major issue…
        ” “Women’s right to choose” will never be in danger, either, yet this fear is always trumpeted to garner loyalty fervency.”
        -Abortion, that is another issue. I can’t say that I am completely comfortable or sure of my opinion with this one, but it IS still an issue also. There are still Republicans that run specifically on this platform in some states and try to (and in some cases succeed) in passing laws against it or that make it all the more difficult. For instance, the Mississippi law that says women who have miscarriages HAVE to report to the hospital for examination or face jail time… As if a woman who just suffered a miscarriage don’t have ENOUGH emotional issues without having to worry about facing jail time if she doesn’t report to the hospital in a timely fashion. Here is a link that has a long list of legislation regarding abortion: (http://www.politicususa.com/proof-war-women-2) I will be the first to say, I have no idea what goes through a woman’s mind when she makes that decision. One thing I do know though, is that whether or not we ban abortions, they will still happen, they will just happen in a way that is dangerous. If a woman really, truly, does not want to be pregnant, she will find a way to terminate the pregnancy no matter who approves. Is it really our place, or in our power, to say “You HAVE to carry this pregnancy to term, no matter how it alters your health, no matter how it will affect your life or the life of family you already have, no matter what the circumstances.” I certainly don’t believe it’s any of my business… Women don’t go out and get pregnant on purpose JUST so they can have abortions, accidents happen, and many times these accidents have just not been prepared for. What it ALWAYS is, is a sad, terrible situation for anyone to be in, and I’m sure that for a majority of the cases out there, it isn’t a decision that’s made easily, or forgotten quickly, if ever. If the Republican’s were truly worried about stopping abortions, they would stop fighting against birth control and contraception so vehemently. They aren’t going to be able to stop people from having sex, so the best way they have to stop abortion is to promote contraception and birth control, yet they throw hissy fits about insurance covering it. Do they honestly think if they make birth control harder to come by that people will stop having sex? To me, that’s a bit of a ridiculous fight… They also don’t consider those grey areas such as rape or incest… Anyway, this conversation certainly went off on a tangent haha!

      3. I think I’m more of a libertarian. I support liberty for all, gay rights (seriously, it’s ridiculous to discriminate against them), abortion (even though it’s a horrible practice, I’m willing to let God sort it all out), legalized pot, lowering the drinking age to 12 (if it’s legal, teens won’t think they’re so cool with their “forbidden” rebel parties), abolishing the Patriot Act and TSA, mailing out free condoms to all Americans. Legalized prostitution. And I would also allocate community welfare programs so that churches were incentivized to provide assistance to the needy and care for the homeless.

        I don’t really support either party, though, because I don’t trust them. They treat us like idiots. I always hope for divided government, just so neither get the chance to go unchallenged. Tyranny is something nowadays that has few limits thanks to the technology we have, so keep them at each others’ throats and maybe they’ll keep them off ours. Hahaha.

      4. Yeah, there are lots of problems with our political system. I think a majority of it is money, on both sides. Unless something changes drastically, no matter who our president ends up being, they will always just be puppets to whoever holds the checkbook. I agree with ALMOST everything you said, however I think the drinking age should only be lowered to 18. If someone is considered by our government to responsible enough to fight for our country in the military and support themselves financially, then they should be able to drink if they want. Teenagers are generally stupid when it comes to things like drinking and would probably end up hurting themselves or others if they were allowed to drink freely… Who knows for sure though.

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