Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Implementation of the Affordable Care Act is pushing many people unwilling into the exchanges and the Kern Citizens for Sustainable Government reveals highest paid county employees are KMC doctors

 * … OBAMACARE: The controversy over the implementation of the Affordable Care Act is revealing the dark underside of dealing with the insurance carriers. As my friend former Congressman Bill Thomas reminds me, no one wants to see how sausage is made but that is where the details are. Insurance companies are now hitting companies and individuals with hefty annual increases to comply with the ACA, or canceling their policies outright, forcing many people unwillingly into the exchanges. That is certainly not what the president once promised when he said "if you like the insurance plan you have now" you will be able to keep it. This story is just getting started and chances are we are all in for more surprises.

 * … WATCHDOG: And speaking of sausage making, the Kern Citizens for Sustainable Government was formed a bit over a year ago to keep tabs on local government. Jenifer Pitcher, the community liaison for the group, told me on First Look with Scott Cox that the focus remains on public pensions, effective education and efficient government. She also told me that when she pulled the top 30 highest paid county employees, 29 of them were doctors on contract with Kern Medical Center.

 * … SPOTTED: On a friend's Facebook page was this: "Overheard in the kitchen when teen daughter was asked if she saw something on Facebook: 'Oh, No, Facebook has been taken over by Moms!'"

* ... STREET SWEEPERS: Reader Jim VanderZwan submitted this lament about city street sweepers. "Recently our neighborhood streets were resealed and the city or whatever contractor completed the work did a great job. The streets were clean and a pristine black, that is, until the street sweepers came through.  Not only were tax payer dollars wasted 'cleaning' a just resurfaced neighborhood, but they left a large ugly brown streak where they 'cleaned' all throughout the neighborhood, leaving me and the neighbors just shaking our heads."

  * ... ACHIEVERS: I misspelled a name of a local achiever in an earlier blog, so I want to get it right today. Here is the full item: I got a call from proud grand mother Christine Nichols who updated me on her two grandsons. Josh Medrano, a 2006 Centennial High graduate, just graduated from the Navy's Nuclear Power Program in Goose Creek, S.C., while his brother, Frontier graduate Matthew Medrano, is studying agronomy at the University of Kentucky.

 * … EVENTS: Two events to keep on your calendar. This Saturday out at Minter Field in Shafter is the annual "fly in" featuring some really interesting aircraft. Gates open at 7 a.m. and it is all free. Then next Saturday, Nov. 9, make sure you remember the drive to collect blankets, pet treats, leashes and collars for stray, sick and abused dogs and cats. It's called Operation Blankets of Love and it will take place at Petco on Gosford Road from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.


Anonymous said...

Drs...the greatest transfer of our nations wealth from these crooks! They take everything, from medicare to county money to everything in between; all in the name of hero worship. Don't get me started on firefighters...


Anonymous said...

Have you just become a complete shill for the GOP? You regularly post McCarthy's misleading and inaccurate propaganda, and then you parrot out regurgitated Republican nonsense. The folks who are getting their insurance plans replaced (not cancelled) are mostly whining. In the vast, vast majority of these cases, the insurance (if you can call it that) is substandard and inadequate. A better product is being made available to them, and frequently at lower cost, if they'd bother to look. While it's true the president made a promise he couldn't keep -- relying as it does on the private insurers to offer coverage they aren't willing to offer -- this development is not unexpected.

I know from my own experience, prior to the ACA, that in my 20 plus years with my employer I've seen my health insurance go from 100 percent covered by my employer for me and my spouse, to I have to pay my spouse's premium, to I have to pay for my spouse's premium and 10 percent of mine, to now I pay for my spouse and 25 percent of my premium. Nearly all of that happened before the ACA.

Why no criticism of outrageous hospital costs, exorbitant physician fees (as highlighted by the KMC note below...what do you suppose the renumeration of most private physicians is?), rapacious pharmaceutical costs? These are the real drivers of the healthcare crisis--it costs too damn much to be sick in this country and way too many people have no access to decent healthcare.

Why no criticism of the avaricious insurance companies, who regularly deny claims, and continually raise rates for no apparent justifiable reason?

Let us not pretend that our healthcare system is some wondrous thing prior to the ACA, and it won't be after the ACA--but it will be improved. Yes, some people will pay more. Some who could never get insurance will now be able to. Isn't this great, this development for the greater good? Or are we strictly focused upon the selfish libertarians among us who can afford to pay more? Reading your work for a while I must say that is the case you espouse.

Nor let us ignore the reluctance and outright sabotage of the GOP in the ACA. Don't set a fire, stand back and fan the flames and then complain that the firemen aren't putting it out fast enough, and then be incensed to be called out as hypocrites. We should be referring to them as saboteurs, because that's what they are: arsonists, saboteurs, scalawags, grifters and traitors.

Anonymous said...

Well said anon! This guys is a shill for the local GOP!