A few days ago I reminded everyone of the old phrase of somebody being stupid enough to be able to fuck up a one car funeral. I expanded that to say that the current GOP was worse, it would have trouble getting the casket into the hearse. I was wrong about that. For this GOP, it turns out that the person wasn’t even dead to start with, just sleeping hard.
A perfect example of this almost otherworldly stupidity is their toddler-in-a-crystal-shop effort to give the rich shitpokes who contribute to boneheaded Republicans more money back in tax breaks than the rest of us earn altogether. Dhould have been a match made in heaven, rich shitpokes always love more money, and who cares about the rest of us, we don’t vote Republican anyway. If it ever looks like they might lose, no problemo, the Koch Brothers will just buy them a new electorate for Christmas.
There was just one problem, the GOP no longer remembers how to write bills. The only bills they’ve written for the last 7 years were Obamacare repeal bills, and they only wrote one of those, every time they wanted to get the warm and fuzzies, they just made a copy of the original, and threw it out on the floor for a vote. As a result, they fucked up the writing of the new bill so badly that they inadvertantly eliminated the lions share of the tax cuts they were trying to give to the rich shitpokes. Job one in the reconciliation conference.
This shold surprise no one, the GOP has been praqctising for this moment for 7 years now.They have hated this Obamacare suitor from the day Obama brought him home from the dance. Their excuse was that it was going to take away individual choice in healthcare, but more importantly, drive the insurance companies broke. This was pure, unadulterated bullshit on both counts.
The insurance companies have had no problem with the ACA since they put in the cost Sharing Reductions. This gave the insurance companies a vast new market to exploit. And exploit it they did, in the same way that the cable companies exploit you. They give you Starz for 6 months for only $5 a month more for 6 months, and then, when you’re hooked on the soft core porn scenes in “The Girlfriend Experience,” they jac up your rate as far as you’ll tolerate.
That’s exactly what they did with the marketplaces. They took a short term loss by making rates affordable to as many people as possible, and got them used to being able to see the doctor. They also made up some slack from people who bought insurance as a backup, but didn’t use enough to outstrip their premium payments. The idea was a stable marketplace and consumer market, then adjust the premiums until you’re making money. But the GOP kept screwing up the works. They kept threatening to end the CSR’s, and promising to finally repeal the ACA next year, roiling the market and scaring people from buying, afraid that it might get pulled out from under them.
The insurance companies finally got what they wanted, they’re making money. According to an article in Politico, after 3 years losing money, the insurance companies finally managed to incrementally increase the premiums enough that they’re on track to finally make a profit this year. And the funny thing is that they’re doing it partially because of the Affordable Care Act. One of the things the ACA dis was mandate that more of every premium dollar go towards patient care expenses.The basic break even point for insurance companies to make a profit was $0.85 of every dollar going to patient costs. But with the changes the insurance companies had to make to qualify under Obamacare, this last year they had increased the effectiveness of their care process so that they were only spending $0.78 on the dollar. A part of this is due to the fact that greater physician availability has meant more preventative care at lower cost to the insurance company, as opposed to the catastrophic cost of the patient waiting until an emergency to be treated for something that could have been handled much more cheaply earlier.
And now, just like with their tax cuts, the Republicans are fucking it up. The insurance companies finally get this thing running like a watch, and the GOP torpedoes it. First, they announce that they’re going to stop making the Cost Sharing Reduction payments that make it possible for lower income people to get health insurance. The customer premiums beside the CSR’s are factored into the inurance companies goals. If people like me dfrop off of the coverage map, the way I did, the insuran ce companies don’t just lose the CSR’s, they lose the premiums people like me were pahying on top of it. And that hurts since we were costing them less money by being healthier.
Not only that, now the GOP is rescinding the Individual Mandate for health insurance as part of their tax boondoggle. This is the kiss of death for insurance companies. Without the Individual Mandate, the insurance companies will lose what healthy people they did have whose premiums helped to subsidize the cost of covering sicker, older people. And while the government may save a ton of money by no longer making CSR payments for 13 million people, that lost revenue, and the collateral premium payments by consumers shoots right out the old blow hole of the insurance companies.
This is “unified Republican government” at its finest. Although I do have one question I would like to ask the insurance company executives if I may. “Excuse me, gentlemen? Are you sick of all this fucking winning yet?” And if they can screw up the insurance companies, they can screw everybody else up too, they’re on a roll.