Monday, November 18, 2013

Being Alive Is A Pre-Existing Condition

"How differently I might behave if immortality were an option." (Tom Stoppard)

Yes. Well...we all misbehave along the way.

Perhaps it's because I am of a certain age, but almost all of my friends and close associates have something wrong with them.

Maybe they smoke or smoked, maybe they did drugs or drank to excess, maybe they played basketball or tennis on concrete courts for too many years, maybe they hurt their backs years ago, maybe all the women in their families tend to get cancer...Or maybe it's just that time has taken its toll.

And before the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare if you prefer, these "somethings", however major or minor they may be, would be cause for insurers to deny them coverage.

So the fact that ACA is imperfect, and that its roll out has been deeply flawed*, while important, are not nearly as important as the fact that it will ultimately offer relief to the vast majority of Americans.

And never forget this important fact: insurance companies spend a great deal of time, effort, and money to fuck us over. Denying as many claims as possible is a key part of their business strategy. Make sure you weigh that against the temporary inconvenience of a faulty website.

It is true that if you live long enough something will eventually kill you, but you shouldn't have to die for lack of care, or go broke along the way because of hospital bills. I know this stands counter to the Great American God of Profit Before All, but still...

*[ Maybe the roll out would have been smoother if the Congress had funded the website with the full amount of money recommended by the Congressional Budget Office and not just 1/6 of the amount. Maybe. And maybe if the Republicans hadn't spent 3 years fighting against its implementation tooth and nail. Maybe.]

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