WARNING: RANT AHEAD.
Last year I didn’t sign up for Obamacare because I didn’t think I qualified based on my income being so low, and North Carolina is one of the states that hasn’t expanded Medicaid to low income people. But that’s only part of the reason I didn’t sign up in 2016. I also just felt triggered, irritated, and emotionally overwhelmed by the whole process, and frankly, I’m also morally opposed to the fact we as a nation do not have single payer healthcare like every other freaking industrialized country. So I guess there was also an element of rebellion in my refusal to sign up, which is stupid, because what would have happened if I got sick or in an accident? I was lucky I did not. I already knew a year ago I’d have to pay the $695 fine when I do the 2016 tax returns, but I assumed it would cost me a whole lot more to get Obamacare, if I even qualified at all. After all, it seemed like everyone was whining about how expensive Obamacare is, but it’s mostly people who hate Obama (I’m not one of them –but I’m starting to really appreciate him now, knowing the Ooompa Loompa is taking over in 3 days.)
So anyway, back to my health insurance saga. I make a little more money now than I did a year ago, due to being promoted to a semi-supervisory position a few months ago (and being up to my ears in work). I just wanted the whole health insurance thing to go away and acted like it would if I just did nothing at all. I just didn’t want to deal with it, but in the back of my mind, I knew that the penalty for 2017 would be close to $2,000 if I didn’t sign up. I also knew I was living on borrowed time, because inevitably the day will come when I will need medical care and not just a first aid kit or an aspirin. But I kept procrastinating because I just didn’t want to deal with the unpleasantness.
Today I got a letter in the mail reminding me to sign up by January 31 if I didn’t want to pay that ridiculous fine for 2017. Personally, I think it’s outrageous that people are being fined for not opting to line the health insurance companies’ coffers, especially if their states haven’t expanded Medicaid to low income people, but what are you going to do? You have to do something, even if it makes you feel like throwing up in your mouth. Why does America think “the market” is so damn wonderful anyway? I think corporations are just as, if not more corrupt than the “big bad government.” Their ONLY reason for existing is for profit. In my opinion, healthcare is a right, not a privilege, and every American should have access to it and not have to pay some insurance company. But no one complains about corporate America, they only complain about “the government.”
So anyway, back to the letter I got. After reading it, I said to myself, what the hell, might as well sign up right now and get it over with, since I have to do it anyway. Why put off the inevitable? There were a lot of questions to answer but it turned out I am eligible for Obamacare and get most of it paid for! My premiums will be only $29 a month!. Maybe I had it all wrong and could have done the same last year and avoided the $695 fine. I also feel better knowing I have health insurance now, even if it’s not the greatest plan in the world. Now I can stop worrying about what I will do should I become sick or have to go in the hospital. Not having insurance at my age is playing with fire, and I’ve been all too aware of that, and tried to ignore it. Now I can cross that off my list of worries. For now.
Because here is what really sucks. Now that I’ve finally signed up, Trump and his band of goons are talking about repealing Obamacare. Now that I finally have it, I’m afraid I’m going to lose it. If I do lose it, will people still be required to pay fines for not having health insurance? I know there’s no way I could ever afford the premiums without the generous tax credit Obamacare gives me. The idea of fining low income people for not having the money for the full price of health care (especially now that most companies no longer offer health insurance to their low-wage slaves) makes me feel sick to my stomach. It would be appallingly unfair if that actually happened, but I wouldn’t put something like that past this godawful, compassionless, immoral administration.
I’m worried about something else too. Paul Ryan, who is a “Christian” (Catholic) Ayn Rand devotee (how is it even possible to be both?) wants to privatize social security. Oh, no, we can’t have that! It helps people! It has to go away because “it’s an entitlement.”
EARTH TO PAUL RYAN: IT’S NOT A FREAKING ENTITLEMENT! I paid into it since 1976! I’m really worried that as I enter my later years, which isn’t that many years from now, that all the money I’ve paid into social security for FORTY-ONE YEARS will be for nothing, and older folks like me who don’t have savings, investments, and 401Ks (because we never made enough money to have those things) who had counted on social security to be there for us when we finally were too old or weak or sick to work anymore, will just have to just keep on working until we drop dead, or become a burden on our grown children, who will be forced to support us.
There’s also talk about privatizing Medicare. If either of these programs the previous three generations enjoyed and that (until recently) seemed immune from being tampered with by Stupid Party, get the plug pulled on them (which “privatizing” essentially means), there’s going to be a whole lot of really angry and frightened people. WHAT IS THIS? LOGAN’S RUN? Or even…SOYLENT GREEN! (That 1973 movie about a dystopian future sounds a LOT like what’s starting to happen here, and the year it takes place in? 2022! Only 5 more years!)
Why not just off everyone too old to work. Riiight, let’s just let the old and the sick DIE OFF. They don’t contribute anything anyway! They’re not PRODUCTIVE! Who cares if they SUFFER?
I think if Obamacare is repealed or especially if Medicaid and social security are privatized, there will be civil war. Hell, maybe a civil war or a mass uprising is what needs to happen so people stop being sheep and keep voting for people who don’t represent their best interests. The squinty eyed fat man with NPD and his pack of sociopathic stooges really have me scared. I’m getting reeeeally close to hating this country and wishing I could just leave. America, the nation that promised so much and that everyone used to want to live in, is turning into a third world country. What’s happening here is the way third world countries are run. Why’s Trump so worried about our borders? Who will want to come here?
Am I the only one who feels like that?
Anyway, I have health insurance. Finally. For now.