A lot of people like “free” stuff. This past election showed this when so many voted for Obama because of all the “free stuff” he was giving them—including free Obama phones–as if he has his own secret stash that he can draw from. Yes, there are sadly millions who believe government healthcare will be free or at least affordable, and that it will be a good thing for all Americans.
What people don’t seem to understand is that nothing is free, and while they might not have to pay money for government programs, millions of cash-strapped citizens have to pay more in order for them to benefit from all of these programs. However, when the full force and ramifications of Obamacare are in place (if it is not repealed), these people who love free stuff will not find much to cheer about when it comes to their health.
Think about long lines at your local DMV or Post Office—and speaking of, things sure have changed since Benjamin Franklin was appointed by the Second Continental Congress to be the first Postmaster General. Congress enacted the “Constitutional Post” as a way to be sure that communications were available between the people and the patriots preparing to fight for America’s independence.
Back in the day, the Postal motto was, “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.” Now we’re lucky if they deliver down a dirt road or on Saturdays. While the post office is a semi-independent federal agency, it still receives approximately $96 million in taxpayer money, which is budgeted annually by Congress. They are required by law to remain “revenue neutral”, not making a profit or suffering a loss. It is interesting then, that last year, in November, the US Postal Service reported losses of $57 million per day in their last quarter. Congress in 2006 mandated they pay for future retiree health benefits. It was reported that these expenses made up $3.1 billion of their quarterly loss and worker’s comp added another $1.1 billion. The Postal Service has direct rules and regulations of management under the federal government, and Congress is partly to blame for the losses, which in turn is passed on to the tax payers who are paying just as much if not more for less service.
Speaking of less service, I wonder if people who believe in government control have considered Amtrak. Amtrak has bled the American taxpayers of billions since its inception under Nixon. Somehow they lost 84.5 million on its food and beverage services in 2011 and $833.8 million over the past 10 years and have never broken even on their services. For those who want a cheeseburger while riding the rails, they can expect to pay $9.50. Congress has required Amtrak’s food and beverage services to be revenue positive since 1981. The sale of food and beverages aboard Amtrak trains has never made a profit in over 30 years. For a government run operation, claiming that 2012 was a successful year because it only lost $361 million, this is what we can look forward to with Obamacare. Only we’ll be dealing with people’s lives instead of cheeseburgers.
And then, there is the Veteran’s Administration. Surely our government would take great efforts to take care of those who have served, those who have been wounded for us, wouldn’t they?
During a hearing a couple of weeks ago, to examine VA clinics and hospitals, it was found that “long wait times and inadequate scheduling processes at VAMCs have been persistent problems.” From the testimony of Ms. Debra A. Draper, Director, Health Care Government Accountability Office, she stated, “In December 2012, we reported that VHA’s medical appointment wait times are unreliable and problems with VHA’s oversight of outpatient medical appointment scheduling processes impede VHA’s ability to schedule timely medical appointments…We found that VHA’s reported outpatient medical appointment wait times are unreliable, there was inconsistent implementation of certain elements of VHA’s scheduling policy that could result in increased wait times or delays in scheduling timely medical appointments…”
The problem is that this is the federal government running healthcare for a reasonably small percentage of our citizens. Long waiting times, meaning, they have to wait to receive much needed care, in many cases important medications, pain management, critical care, important follow up procedures and operations.
There are hundreds of good doctors who care about our Veterans and thousands of medical staff who work hard every day trying to help those who have served our country but their time is restricted, which means less time spent with their patients. Their service is rushed as they are given larger caseloads. Backlogged appointments and a shortage of the latest medical equipment and medicines, which would help, heal those who need care. If things are like this for military Veterans, what will things be like when every citizen is forced into a government bureaucratic system?
Obamacare will spend at least $1.7 trillion (over 10 years) on its coverage expansion provisions alone, including a massive expansion of Medicaid and federal subsidies for the new health insurance exchanges. It will increase federal health spending by 15 percent, bringing it to 44 percent of all mandatory spending. At least 18 new or increased taxes and penalties raise $836 billion in new taxes between 2013 and 2022. There’s also $716 billion in spending cuts to Medicare. The Medicare chief actuary warns that these cuts are unrealistic and unsustainable and will likely add billions more to the budget deficit.
One only needs to think of other nations with government run, socialized health “care” to see where America’s system under Obamacare will lead, waste of billions of dollars, and steadily increasing taxation on over half the nation’s citizens. None of the “free stuff” is going to last. One only needs to think…
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