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Carol M. Ostrom shows how ACA should properly be covered (hint: she's a health reporter, not a political reporter):

Nobody disputes that enrollment in taxpayer-supported Medicaid, already above its 2017 target, will make a serious dent in the numbers of uninsured. But the ACA, in the end, hinged on bringing the uninsured into the private marketplace.

When the dust settles, will Washington, one of the most successful states in enrolling residents in health insurance plans through its exchange, have accomplished that goal?

Ostrom goes through all the reasons it's not easy to know.
In the legislative work session, Dammeier, Sen. Andy Hill, R-Redmond, and Sen. Randi Becker, R-Eatonville, all demanded a number from Onizuka: How many of those who are getting health coverage through the exchange were previously uninsured?

Onizuka couldn’t satisfy the lawmakers. “That’s a harder number for us to get,” he said, stumbling to find the right phrases. “We’re trying to get that.”

Why is that number so elusive?

Here’s one reason: At this point, there’s no good way to track individual people’s insurance choices. It would be easier if Carol M. Ostrom had to report her insurance status monthly to Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler. Then we would know whether she used to be uninsured.

But that’s not the case, at least not now.

So, the lawmakers asked Onizuka, did the exchange at least ask those signing up: Do you have insurance?

It sounds simple enough but, in fact, it’s complicated, too.

Last year, the Healthplanfinder application caught people in the midst of transition, and people who had a plan that was being discontinued might reasonably have answered: “Sort of.”

If they had insurance at the moment they signed up, and answered, “yes,” the website sometimes wouldn’t allow them to move the application ahead, local sign-up assisters say. If they eventually answered, “no,” will they be counted among the “uninsured”?

Once you read through that, you'll have a better sense of what Charles Gaba has accomplished at acasignups.net, wading through data like this to make sense of it.

More politics and policy below the fold.

Your daily serving of "Chris Christie, burnt toast".

Jonathan Cohn:

Conservatives' real beef: That people want to sign up

For each one of these extensions or delays, the ultimate question is whether they change the law’s ability to realize its basic goals—which, in this case, means encouraging people to buy new private health plans while maintaining a stable insurance market. Giving people a little extra time to enroll wouldn’t seem to impede this kind of progress. If anything, it would seem to enhance it. And maybe that's what really bothers some of the law's fiercer critics.

Paul Krugman, with a Gaba appreciation post:
So what would real data-driven reporting look like (beyond what goes on at the sites Noah mentions, and also at the Times)? Well, here’s an example: Charles Gaba’s ACASignups.net. Gaba, a website developer, realized that nobody was systematically keeping track of enrollment data for Obamacare, and has turned himself into one-stop shopping on the law’s progress. And he really fills a need: when you read news reports on Obamacare, you can tell right away which reporters have been reading Gaba and know what’s happening and which reporters are relying solely on official announcements — or, worse, dueling political spin.
That Krugman piece above? it's also part of a feud going on between him and Nate Silver, which Nate escalated with this tongue in cheek piece.

Good news from ABC:

Twenty-five pharmaceutical companies are voluntarily phasing out the use of antibiotics for growth promotion in animals processed for meat, the Food and Drug Administration said Wednesday.

Citing a potential threat to public health, the agency in December asked 26 companies to voluntarily stop labeling drugs important for treating human infection as acceptable for animal growth promotion. The FDA did not name the one company that has not agreed to withdraw or revise its drugs.

David Ramsey:
Many on the left are trumpeting another finding, suggesting that many people are tired of hashing out the health care law, and that Republicans may be making a strategic mistake with their all-Obamacare-all-the-time strategy in the 2014 elections.

Well, maybe. The "Obamacare bad" message still plays pretty well in Arkansas. But hey, perhaps by November being tired of hearing about the health care debate is something that Democrats and Republicans will be able to agree on.

WaPo:
So in Amsterdam on Saturday night, Secret Service supervisor George Hartford had the Miami incident in mind when he issued a warning to a group of agents gathered for dinner: Go out if you want, but stay out of trouble.

By the next morning, Hartford was pounding on the hotel door of a 34-year-old junior agent who had passed out drunk in a hallway and later had to be lifted into his room by several hotel employees, according to a hotel spokesman and two other people familiar with the incident. The agent claimed to have no memory of the events.

Hey, thanks for taking your job seriously, guys.

Dahlia Lithwick:

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Is Irreplaceable

All you liberals trying to push her out, think about that.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Dahlia is right (30+ / 0-)

    In fact, all the women on SCOTUS are invaluable, but Ruth Bader Ginsberg is a national treasure.

    If the Republicans ever find out that Barack Obama favors respiration, we'll be a one-party system inside two minutes. - Alan Lewis

    by MadRuth on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 04:47:50 AM PDT

    •  like Thurgood Marshall (10+ / 0-)

      Both of them earned their stripes litigating the key civil rights cases of an entire generation, and then jumped to SCOTUS without the usual lower court apprenticeships. That civil-rights- by- litigation era has passed. So no, we won't see another Ginsberg.

      That said, the younger generation of women on the Court are also highly qualified, and making a real difference. If the Hobby Lobby case goes as we fear, I expect a vigorous dissenting opinion that all three of them join.

      •  Ginsburg and Marshall were lower court judges. (0+ / 0-)

        She served on the D.C. Circuit for well over a decade before her appointment to the Supreme Court.  

        Marshall served for a shorter time on the Second Circuit.

        "Ça c'est une chanson que j'aurais vraiment aimé ne pas avoir écrite." -- Barbara

        by FogCityJohn on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 10:19:43 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  We are strongly litigating (0+ / 0-)

        Marriage Equality, Women's Choice, voting rights, labor rights, immigration rights, the right not to be shot, and a multitude of others. The Civil Rights Era never ended. It just became part of the regular routine, not something to put on the news every day. The first Marriage Equality lawsuit from the ACLU was in 1971, so it has been a 43-year slog so far. Rights for Blacks have been litigated since before the Civil War, with the Dred Scott decision being merely the most visible and reprehensible.

        Whether we will see another ACLU litigator on SCOTUS is a different question. Not from Obama, certainly. Hillary might, considering that Bill nominated Ginsburg.

        Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

        by Mokurai on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 02:45:39 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  What's that line about graveyards (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LemmyCaution

      and irreplaceable people?

      "Harass us, because we really do pay attention. Look at who's on the ballot, and vote for the candidate you agree with the most. The next time, you get better choices." - Barney Frank

      by anonevent on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 06:01:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  More from David Ramsey..... (14+ / 0-)

    "The other big finding to note is that 59 percent of those surveyed either want Congress to keep the law and work to improve it or just keep it as is, while just 29 percent want to repeal it or repeal and replace with a Republican alternative......Another poll earlier this month found 71 percent wanting to keep the law (54 percent saying they want lawmakers to work on fixing it, 17 percent saying they want the law to remain as is) and just 28 percent wanting to eliminate it."

    Unfortunately the GOP are not into facts....beliefs yes....facts no.

    •  Improve it how? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wintergreen8694, SoCalSal

      None of those polls ask what they think is wrong with the law.

      For 80% of the people the law will ultimately effect, ACA has been delayed.

      Those polls are silly.  "Improve it" could range anywhere from slight tweaks to a complete overhaul.

      And speaking of "fixing it".  None of the politicians up for re-election this year have bothered to spell out what fixes are needed.  To them, saying "fix it" is their way of saying.. hey, I don't want to be associated with this POS.

      •  Most don't know much about it (6+ / 0-)

        Fix what? You may be right about that. Most wouldn't know what to fix because they don't even know how it affects them. The entire issue of driving down avg. healthcare costs is barely recognized yet (it will be). But "repeal", which has been the right wing response is NOT what most Americans want. And even some of those who have been propagandized into agreeing with "repeal" are starting to recognize real benefits to themselves or close friends/family members (even if a subset of those may still be in denial).

        "One of the more serious temptations which stifles boldness and zeal is a defeatism which turns us into querulous and disillusioned pessimists, sourpusses." ― Pope Francis

        by GoodGod on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 05:30:22 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  GOP mantra here in NC is that Obamacare is (0+ / 0-)

          broken.......24/7......so fix it.

        •  Agreed.. but that will likely change.. (0+ / 0-)

          All of the "good stuff" of ACA kicked in early.. it was front loaded.

          The Medicaid expansion and individual plans available for the chronically sick with guaranteed coverage are all good things.  Individual plans with subsidies for lower income folks is a positive as well.

          But, employer plans have not seen the hit yet.  My employer was able to keep their plan for one more year in December.  But next year?  With all the delays by executive order, I have no idea when the employer mandates kick in anymore.. too damn confusing.

          But, kick in they will.  And that is when the majority of Americans will truly be able to judge how effective this law is in their eyes.  Not until then.

          •  The employer mandates (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Heart of the Rockies, GoodGod

            kick in in 2015. Too damn confusing? Try a Google search.

            http://obamacarefacts.com/...

            If your employer already has insurance for it's employees that meets the standards set by the ACA (covers 60% of expenses for a typical population and doesn't cost more than 9.5% of the employees income), then it has nothing to worry about.  

            Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

            by skohayes on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 06:02:44 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  And 2016 for smaller employers (0+ / 0-)

              with 50-99 employees.

              So it will be two more years until the majority of Americans feel the effects of ACA... as I said.

              And those effects, in the employer paid market, will be that premiums will be higher.  Almost no plan met ACA standards.  The "free" doctor visits, etc. will end up costing more.

              My company, before it was told they could renew their old policy, was told there would be a 5-7%  increase due to ACA alone.

              •  My insurance increased on average (0+ / 0-)

                about 10% a year up until 2012. We switched insurance companies and the rates have not gone up in the last 2 years.
                Almost no plan met ACA standards? Well, frankly, if they're that bad, they need to be replaced.

                Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

                by skohayes on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 11:00:08 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

      •  You don't mention a public option. Why? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Stude Dude

        Before ACA become law, that was the one thing that polled above all others as to what the American people wanted from the law.

        “We can always count on the Americans to do the right thing, after they have exhausted all the other possibilities.” - Winston Chuchill

        by se portland on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 05:59:04 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Time for a beer summit. (9+ / 0-)

    ...between Krugman and Silver.

    Or not.  As feuds go, this one is pretty entertaining.

    -

  •  More good news coming on the ACA (6+ / 0-)

    Initial exchange sign-ups are spiking (see Charles Gaba http://acasignups.net/ ), and will come in between 6 to 7 million once the numbers are fully counted in a month or two. Significant percentages will be previously uninsured, and younger.

    But there are 500K counted and as many as 4 million off-exchange that have signed up to plans that can't be cancelled when they get sick. These need to be added in! As well as Medicaid and Students on parents plans... we may be approaching 20 million Americans with coverage or improved coverage despite the Republican lies, fear tactics and obstruction.

    Just think how much more popular this law will be, and how many more will enroll next round, as the truth comes out. Also how much more successful it would be, how many more would be covered, and how much impact on holding healthcare costs down there would be if the Republicans had helped in its implementation.

    "One of the more serious temptations which stifles boldness and zeal is a defeatism which turns us into querulous and disillusioned pessimists, sourpusses." ― Pope Francis

    by GoodGod on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 05:07:31 AM PDT

    •  That's quite a counterfactual you have there (0+ / 0-)

      going back to Ronald Reagan cutting a vinyl LP in 1961 for Operation Coffee Cup, on how Medicare was Socialized Medicine and the end of American Freedom.

      Then, as I Diaried several years ago in The sum of all GOP fears, Bill Kristol explained in 1993 how HillaryCare would be

      a serious political threat to the Republican Party...It will revive the reputation of the party that spends and regulates, the Democrats, as the generous protector of middle-class interests. And it will at the same time strike a punishing blow against Republican claims to defend the middle class by restraining government.
      The Tea Party cancer that has metastasized throughout the Republican Party was started explicitly to demonize Obamacare, and has since tried to take down the US Government and the global economy.

      You just wait until a Single Payer bill comes before Congress. Assuming that the Republican Party still exists then.

      Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

      by Mokurai on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 03:13:08 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  My wife got us signed up (12+ / 0-)

    after I essentially screwed it up.

    I was CERTAIN we were supposed to be using "Federal Gross Income" but she said I was wrong. She went to an accountant and they finagled numbers and we are now signed up for some OK coverage at less than $300 month (w/o any dental or vision)

    We were paying $500/month for BC/BS policy that was jacked up to $720/month or something in February. I  didn't pay on it any further. That's a house payment and the policy was really crappy: $500/month + pay for almost everything out of pocket anyway.

    $300 or less is what ins should cost. Ins co make too much  money doing absolutely nothing.

    Legal means "good".
    [41984 | Feb 4, 2005]

    by xxdr zombiexx on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 05:07:46 AM PDT

  •  Ruth Bader Ginsburg is also in her 80's (5+ / 0-)

    She almost certainly won't survive until 2020.  Does anyone, ANYONE here want her replacement to be chosen by a Republican if the Democratic candidate doesn't win in 2016?

    This isn't freedom. This is fear - Captain America

    by Ellid on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 05:08:30 AM PDT

  •  Florida ACA enrollments overcome GOP obstacles (21+ / 0-)

    Florida overcomes barriers to enroll uninsured

    Florida’s Republican leaders have fought the Affordable Care Act, banning navigators from county health departments, offering no state dollars to boost outreach efforts to 3.5 million uninsured and leading the fight to repeal the law. Yet the state has emerged as a tale of what went right with President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul.

    More than 440,000 Florida residents had been enrolled through the federal marketplace through the end of February, putting Florida on pace to exceed the federal government’s initial projections by the time enrollment closes March 31.

    The numbers are impressive for a state where Republicans control the governor’s mansion and both houses of the Legislature. By comparison, Republican-leaning Texas has enrolled 295,000 through the federal site, even though its population is about a third larger than Florida’s.

    Seeing this and recalling the long, late night lines of Floridians waiting to vote in the last presidential election gives me hope for my state.  

    As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

    by JaxDem on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 05:12:26 AM PDT

    •  But will they come out to vote (9+ / 0-)

      In the off years?  This year with the Governors race and the Medical Cannabis initiative, I would expect the left of center vote to be strong, but these same people who waited on line for the 2012 election need to show up this November and November 2018...

      But the success of the ACA here is encouraging.

      •  I've been canvassing with my local (10+ / 0-)

        Democrats group and although we have begun with visiting identified "Super Dems" there seems to be a number of hot button issues (education related issues chief among them)  they have with Scott that indicate that group intends to vote, but then again they would not have been labeled "super dems" if they didn't vote in nearly every election.  I suppose we'll learn more when our canvassing/phone banking includes everyone.  I do have a flak jacket on order from amazon for the days we do open canvassing ;-)

        As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

        by JaxDem on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 05:29:15 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's the layer below "Super Dems"... (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Stude Dude, salmo, rl en france, JaxDem

          ...that is the key in this cycle. The sooner we can focus attention and resources on known but "casual" supporters, the better.

          I realize there is a segment of the DKos community that recoils at the concept of "working" our casual voters, and I am learning to respect their deeply held beliefs on this matter...but I am nowhere close to "there" yet and I'm probably decades away from "there" truth be told. The rest of us need to focus our attention on these voters and pursue any effective means of engaging them in this cycle.

          Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. --Martin Luther King Jr.

          by Egalitare on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 06:11:20 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  These voters (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            salmo, rl en france, JaxDem

            are rather easily identified here in New York by looking at their voting patterns.  We should be targeting those voters who show a pattern of only showing up in Presidential years.  Canvassing door to door is the most effective, if not the most efficient way to get these voters out.  

            We can have democracy in this country, or we can have wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. Louis Brandeis

            by Ohkwai on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 06:35:40 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  How much healthcare would a B-2 bomber (7+ / 0-)

    provide?

    The Northrop Grumman B-2 Spirit is also known as the Stealth Bomber. This is the only bomber that can carry large air-to-surface standoff weapons in a stealth configuration. The cost of one of these is about $737 million.
    That's close to $9 billion a year...

    Yeah... I know it's heresy to even suggest using DEFENSE money for helping sick people, but I just wondered.

    DFH's do that.

    Legal means "good".
    [41984 | Feb 4, 2005]

    by xxdr zombiexx on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 05:28:08 AM PDT

  •  How hard would it have been to have asked (0+ / 0-)

    enrollees: "Have you had health insurance in the last six months?"

    But, no.. this administration doesn't want to know those numbers. So, they can spin them as "millions of uninsured", when we have no idea really.

    Nor, do they want to know the enrollment numbers.. or, at least they don't want us to know.

    So it comes down to a courageous individual like Charles Gaba to have to compile these numbers.  The billions we are spending on ACA should at least pay for a small office dedicated to compiling these numbers accurately.  It's pitiful.

    •  The whole concept of insurance in this (6+ / 0-)

      capitalist country has been abysmal.

      So what if Obamacare had quirks during start up?

      So what if there are bits of data going uncollected and unsifted (I assume the N$A will have that anyway)?

      Costs are being dragged down to where the BULK of Americans can actually afford it.

      Politicians cite stats all the time and - really - it hardly matters how accurate those stats are most of the time: politics is so much hot air and hyperbole and complete bullshit.

      As long as normal people can afford to go to a doctor, progress has been made: who cares about gift wrapping?

      Legal means "good".
      [41984 | Feb 4, 2005]

      by xxdr zombiexx on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 05:35:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  wow (11+ / 0-)

      I'll give you this. You're consistent.

      "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

      by Greg Dworkin on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 05:45:36 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The Washington exchange web site (8+ / 0-)

      was designed to gather the pertinent information needed to sign people up for health insurance. It was not designed, nor tasked with gathering census information about Washington citizens.

      If it had, we would hear the Right howling about that. Hell, if you remember, they were howling about the constitutionally mandated census being and intrusive on their privacy, and threaten to boycott it.

      “We can always count on the Americans to do the right thing, after they have exhausted all the other possibilities.” - Winston Chuchill

      by se portland on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 05:49:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  PS if you actually read Carol's piece (15+ / 0-)

      the answer is "harder than you suggest". And no, it isn't that people don't want to know (an absurd suggestion), it's that it's not so easy to know.

      Further, the more boxes and checks you need to fill out the harder the signup. The idea is to make it easier, not harder.

      And you know what? At the time of signup, it doesn't frickin' matter. This is a policy aimed at helping people who need insurance a lot more than it is a policy designed to satisfy the Monday morning quarterbacks.

      We'll simply have to wait for some of these numbers.

      Glad you weren't blogging when SS was rolled out. it was as sloppy as Medicare Part D.

      "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

      by Greg Dworkin on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 05:51:05 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  And SS was fought against even (5+ / 0-)

        afterwards tooth and nail.  I remember reading in The Glory and the Dream that employers attempted to scare employees by telling them that the big bad gubbmint had ordered the employers to REDUCE YOUR WAGES.  Thankfully, there wasn't the hysterical MMQBing then that the internets permit nowadays.

        With the Decision Points Theater, the George W. Bush Presidential Library becomes the very first Presidential Library to feature a Fiction Section.

        by Its the Supreme Court Stupid on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 06:14:35 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Ummm.. excuse me.. (0+ / 0-)

        but ACA was sold to the American people as a way of solving the "crisis" of the uninsured.

        Now, that it has passed and started to be implemented, not so much, eh?

        I, as a taxpayer, have a right to know how effective a trillion dollar program is doing at reaching its stated goals.  And, my government has the obligation to provide me with that data.

        •  We have no way of knowing (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          JJ In Illinois, I love OCD, SoCalSal

          based on the initial signups.

          We will be able to tell in the slightly longer run, based on the same kind of data that told us we had a problem with the uninsured in the first place. Not to mention the underinsured or junk insured.

          Frankly, just a count of those signing up who didn't have insurance doesn't really tell us what you want to know anyway. Others could be brought in through expanded employee plans. Obviously the Medicaid expansion gets some. And of course the opposition will always point out the threat of companies dropping coverage.
          So a simple count of X people who signed up under the ACA and didn't have insurance before doesn't actually mean "Number of uninsured dropped by X". Wait and survey the actual number of uninsured once it's running. Preferably over a couple of years as things shake out.

          The Empire never ended.

          by thejeff on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 07:16:57 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  JJ seems mad (0+ / 0-)

            Angry about "stuff." When I'm upset and want to vent, I don't want to hear well thought out explanations full of facts. I don't usually waste time and emotional energy trying to get "angry" people to listen to reason. Venting people are not really looking for info anyway. Some of us have done exhaustive research on the PPACA and how it effects us and others, some haven't. I used to share any info I had on the subject with most anyone who brought it up. Because I thought it was important. But I realized after many heated exchanges that those who are inquisitive, and not agitated by their lack of knowledge, are the most likely to be receptive. Sometimes I'll listen to the rant about "stuff" and then after they've calmed themselves, will THEN say "what do you think? Is that right?" AT that point we can fact check everything together. I'm MORE than happy to share the truth. I'm not willing to argue about what are actually facts though. I'm not making shit up after all. It's all verifiable. There's most likely 100's of people on this site (1000's?)who have all the info anyone could ever want or need regarding the ACA. Plus a whole bill to read if you have the stamina. So....is there something you'd like to know JJ? Just ask.  

            "Because we are all connected...."

            by Shawn87 on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 10:48:17 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  what part of "you'll have to wait" (6+ / 0-)

          are you struggling with? ACA was sold to decrease the un- and underinsured at rates people could afford, without eliminating the private markets. It is doing exactly that.

          Millions of people are signing up (likely 6.5 mm or more) and another set of millions are now in Medicaid and another subset of millions stay on parents insurance.

          Approx. 75% of people in KY were not insured before this (both QHP and Medicaid). IIn NY it's something like 59%. It remains to be seen whether it's true in other states.

          But the first batch of open enrollment is not over (for 2014) and CBO guesstimates it would take a few years to ramp up.

          I get the doubt before it's started, but now you're just climate denying the numbers. People are signing up by the millions and nothing you write changes that.

          As policy it's working. Politics are a different argument.

          "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

          by Greg Dworkin on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 07:20:20 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  as for the underinsured (numerous) (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          rl en france, johanus

          nice piece here defining the problem.

          http://www.commonwealthfund.org/...=

          "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

          by Greg Dworkin on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 07:29:36 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Well, is that a NECESSARY data point? (10+ / 0-)

      The way people demonize this administration, any extra questions, no matter how relevant, would be spun somehow into "FEMA Camps" and "Tyranny".

      A former RWNJ friend (former friend, not a former nut) thought the census was intrusive in 2010, although he had to deal with the census at least 3 times prior in his adult life.  But now that the Kenyan/Indonesian/Muslim/Gay/Atheist was president it was suddenly a 4th Amendment violation to him.  I suspect that Obama Derangement would apply here.

    •  Why does that matter? (8+ / 0-)

      Does it matter whether people are buying MORE AFFORDABLE insurance or whether people are getting insurance for the first time?
      There are two comments in this thread, from Bill and dr. zombie that show that it's working for people regardless of whether they had insurance before:

      I was CERTAIN we were supposed to be using "Federal Gross Income" but she said I was wrong. She went to an accountant and they finagled numbers and we are now signed up for some OK coverage at less than $300 month (w/o any dental or vision)

      We were paying $500/month for BC/BS policy that was jacked up to $720/month or something in February. I  didn't pay on it any further. That's a house payment and the policy was really crappy: $500/month + pay for almost everything out of pocket anyway.

      $300 or less is what ins should cost. Ins co make too much  money doing absolutely nothing.

      $243 for me. (10+ / 0-)
      And that's down from the $800 it would've cost just to latch onto my partner's plan.  I went without insurance because of the cost for seven years.  Glad to have it now, through a non-profit insurance outfit here.
      The fact is, as much as you conservatives complain about it, it's helping millions of people get coverage and go to the doctor, and THAT'S what the ACA was about.

      Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

      by skohayes on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 06:16:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  It was also supposed to (0+ / 0-)

        solve the "crisis" of the uninsured.  Has it?  We have no idea because they don't want to collect that info.  Absurd.

        •  That information is being collected (0+ / 0-)

          One thing we do know is that red states are leaving their poor in the lurch by refusing to expand Medicaid, so not as many people are being covered as they planned on.
          Nothing like fucking over your poorest citizens just to make sure people know how much you hate Obama.

          Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

          by skohayes on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 10:54:39 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  We actually have pretty good numbers on (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            skohayes

            people getting Medicaid for the first time, especially "woodworkers" who qualified for Medicaid before the expansion, and came out of the woodwork because of all the fuss about the expansion. Brainwrap estimates them at 1.78 million so far. There appear to be at least 4.62 million getting Medicaid Expansion for the first time, people who did not qualify for Medicaid before. It could be more.

            JJ wants information not gathered by the exchanges or the Medicaid authorities. Here it is, from Gallup.

            U.S. Uninsured Rate Drops so Far in First Quarter of 2014

            Rate among 26- to 34-year-olds continues to fall

            These data are based on more than 19,000 interviews with Americans from Jan. 2-Feb. 10, 2014, as part of the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index.

            The percentage of uninsured declined from 18.0% before the exchanges opened in October to 17.1% in January to 16% on Feb. 10.

            Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

            by Mokurai on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 04:22:01 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Thank you (0+ / 0-)

              From what I've read, most people who will remain uninsured are those that qualify for the Medicaid expansion, but live in a red state that refused the money.

              In states that do not expand Medicaid, millions will fall into a “coverage gap” of earning too much to qualify for traditional Medicaid coverage but not enough to qualify for other ACA coverage provisions. The median Medicaid eligibility levels for parents in states not implementing the ACA Medicaid expansion is just 47% of poverty, or about $9,400 a year for a family of three, and only one of those states (Wisconsin) covers adults without dependent children. State decisions not to expand their programs will leave over five million people without an affordable coverage option.
              http://kff.org/...

              Imagine being a family of 3 with an income of less than $10,000 and being told you make too much money to qualify for Medicaid.

              Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

              by skohayes on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 03:32:09 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Most people who remain uninsured (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                skohayes

                will be those who fail to take advantage of the exchanges. There are supposed to be about 5 million being denied Medicaid expansion, and a prior total pool of 49 million uninsured (US Census 2009) mainly because they couldn't afford it, or were subject to exclusions for pre-existing conditions.

                The reasons for such failure are various. The biggest seem to be

                Ignorance that coverage is available, and at what price

                Believing one or another Republican lie about how it doesn't work

                Refusal to enroll because Obamacare is teh evul

                (not counting those who prefer to remain on junk insurance that costs slightly less and provides far worse coverage)

                We know how to deal with each of those through education, outreach, and word of mouth. The expectation is that we will reach 6.5 million by the end of Open Enrollment, which is being extended by two weeks for those who start an application by March 31 but don't finish it before the original deadline. Maybe 7 million by election day, since many people will have qualifying events (birth, death, marriage, divorce, losing a job with coverage…) outside of open enrollment. Maybe double that or a bit more in the next open enrollment, and the next after that, and so on. So in seven or eight years, we could bring in almost everybody.

                In other words, working as designed, right on track, matches earlier rollouts perfectly (RomneyCare, Medicare prescription benefit, original Medicare, Medicaid). Except in head-exploding Teabagistan.

                Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

                by Mokurai on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 09:23:37 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  NOBODY complained (9+ / 0-)

    when Bush extended the enrollment period for Medicare Part D:

    As Republicans complain about the Obama administration's latest deadline extension for Americans to purchase health insurance, Democrats are countering with this reminder: The Bush administration did something similar in 2006. Back then, as it was implementing the Medicare prescription-drug benefit Bush had signed into law, the GOP presidential administration announced it was waiving penalties for low-income seniors and those with disabilities who signed up late. There's one key difference....Democrats didn't try to scuttle the Medicare law's implementation (especially since some of them had voted for it), while the same isn't exactly true of GOP actions regarding the health-care law. But the 2006 story is a reminder that when it comes to the implementation of complex new laws, both Democratic and Republican administration have changed the rules to encourage enrollment."
    http://www.nbcnews.com/...

    Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

    by skohayes on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 06:20:12 AM PDT

  •  I'm having regrets (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    salmo

    About drawing my skiffy parody escapist comics back in the '80s instead of getting involved with the Farm Movement.

    But the dreariness of being stuck on the farm is why I drew those skiffy parody escapist comics.

    Plus the Farm Movement got tainted by getting infiltrated by hate groups. Then it fizzled out.

    "If this Studebaker had anymore Atomic Space-Age Style, you'd have to be an astronaut with a geiger counter!"

    by Stude Dude on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 06:23:51 AM PDT

  •  LOL, as seen on Twitter (12+ / 0-)

    Arguing with conservatives is like playing chess with a pigeon; no matter how good I am at chess, the pigeon is just going to knock over the pieces, crap on the board and strut around like it's victorious.

    Your beliefs don't make you a better person. Your behavior does.

    by skohayes on Thu Mar 27, 2014 at 06:31:45 AM PDT

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