Monday, September 7, 2009

What really does "Public option" mean?

Happy Labor Day to all! Hope each of you are having a very nice relaxing day!

Are you as confused by all of this talk about President Obama's new health care program as I am? Do you think anyone who knows what the politicians are talking about? If you flick from one news program to another you will hear entirely different explanations and the definitions will vary extremely depending on which political party is doing the talking.

I read an article in our Sunday Review Journal this morning. The article was written by Susan Estrich titled "Who will run free hot dog stand?" and it mentioned something like buying hot dogs compared to health care for $10 or $20 but some, she said, couldn't afford a hot dog for even that amount. I did not see the comparison. A friend of hers doesn't have insurance and she described what he has had to go through in the public hospital as compared to what she deals with having insurance. Her conclusion is blaming the conservatives for screwing up the ideas that liberals want to pass just because the conservatives don't want to raise taxes.

I know of two situations where both individuals have been in need insurance coverage of some kind. One individual had lost his job and shortly after that he was involved in an accident with no insurance. His health care cost was astronomical. He had worked and paid taxes since he was 16. He had insurance when he was employed. The social workers at the hospital asked him if he had the unemployed insurance, Cobra, which is available - guess what, it costs $500+ a month - please tell me, if you are unemployed, how can you pay for it!!! Duh!!! He applied everywhere for assistance and was denied - he is an American citizen. He is working now, he had to take the job he could get due to the economy and can't afford insurance because his wage is so low he can barely meet his expenses.

The other individual had a good union policy and he has a child he is responsible for 100%. He had to have surgery and he was off work too long, then the economy crash hit he lost more work time and consequently lost his insurance too. He has been earning enough time to be eligible for union insurance again, but in the meantime if his child gets ill, he's hurting or if his health problems erupt again, he has no recourse. He is an American citizen too, and has worked as well since he was 16 and paid taxes.

I am a conservative but I do believe there should be assistance available for American citizens when they need it. We are a generous country and we should take care of our own.

I can understand the point of view of the conservatives wanting to rein in frivolous spending - wouldn't you? Why would you, if you were on a fixed budget, take your mortgage money and spend it on an unnecessary trip or car or furniture. We do need our health care system remodeled and upgraded within reason.

There are three or four blanket ideas floating to be voted on when Congress returns tomorrow and now the President has come up with his own plan. Some will include the Public Option - whatever in the world that is - and some won't. And, now the Democrats are talking of pushing the Republicans out all together and they will push the bill through on some sort of executive situation.

I am sure that John Q Public is more informed today than ever in history. Because of the Internet and cable news, we have choices and through communication tools like blogging and emails we can get our opinions across. I think this is a thread to the politicians and they don't like our being more informed than they are. There are a few who have remained patient with their constituents at the town hall meets and I give them a big "thank you" whether they are Democrats or Republicans - I thank them for listening! But for those who think they know it all and have been resentful and rude, I'll bet they won't be in office next voting cycle. I wish the Democrats and Republicans would work together peacefully and with consideration to get a good heath care program passed that would help all AMERICANS now and in the future. I can dream, can't I!

I found a law website/blog which stated simply the term "public option" and you may link to it here. I don't know about you, but my head is spinning with overkill - - it's no wonder many of our politicians don't have the answers, they don't know what they're voting on either.

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