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Respeck Knuckles


I was kind of shocked that the Affordable Care Act was deemed legal across the board. Don't get me wrong, I support the president and the troops, but I didn't think that with almost three years of shouting, lies, and forwarded e-mail propaganda from opponents that cooler heads would prevail.

Tonight the missus has to go console a friend now that "Obamacare" will continue to be the law of the land. I suggested that she encourage her friend to refrain from right-wing media for a week or two, if possible, or this friend will need anti-anxiety meds. Medication that will paid for by that person's health insurance, a fact that amuses me since the ACA does not effect this friend.

Guys, so hug a Republican. They need it right now.


I always kinda liked John Roberts. He seemed like a shockingly reasonable, non-partisan/non-agenda choice when G-Dubs chose him. (I mean, compared to what I expected at the time.) That's a good thing, because he's awfully young (by Supreme Court standards) and will probably be there a looooong time.
At the time of his senate confirmation I wondered why nobody called out the (at that time) current president for nominating someone for the high court and then asking that the new guy also be named chief justice. That seemed like a strange move to me. But W also had the senate fully on his side so he got what he wanted.

Roberts is going to be around for a long time and I think he is asserting himself as a non ideological leader. I'm no law scholar so I can't say something silly like, "I know that I won't agree with all his decisions..." But it is clear that he isn't going to rant in public about decisions such as Scalia, and he certainly will not be asked to officiate any of Rush Limbaugh's future weddings like Thomas.
I thought that was weird too. I guess I didn't even realize that the president had the right to choose the Chief Justice — I assumed it was based on seniority, or an internal vote or something. I was shocked to see this brand-new 50-year-old dude get appointed CHIEF JUSTICE so quickly, and obviously I was leery of anyone hand-picked by GWB getting that position, but there did seem to be some kind of inherent decency about Roberts. I couldn't hate him.
SHOCKED that it actually passed, too, la vache! I have medical bills to pay right now because I had the audacity to get sick when I couldn't afford healthcare. No one should be given a death sentence or be bankrupt because of their health.

Insurance isn't cheap and getting sick is even more expensive. Getting sick isn't a choice and I hope your medical bills aren't setting you back too badly.

I often hear opponents of health care reform (and anything else they once liked until this president also liked it) say that health care is not a right. Then I point out that if they have a cut artery and go to a hospital emergency room they will not be delayed care until after the ability to pay has been established. That's the uninsured emergency example. My other example is Medicare. So health care kind of is a right.

Cutting down costs will be the next hurdle for an industry that is raking in the money. The missus was told by her doctor in 2008 to get an ultra sound and a mammogram. It took us seven months to pay off those bills because none of that was covered by our insurance at that time. That all changed the following year.
I hope the missus is okay now!

It looks like my bills are coming to $2,500 because that's the deductible on my new insurance (I should have clarified, I have insurance but is super shitty insurance - Horizon Blue Cross - NEVER USE THEM). This was for vaccines, blood tests and a routine check-up, but the plan I'm on charges the deductible for EVERYTHING before they even consider co-pays, especially since my doctor apparently "as routine, doesn't do pre-authorizations". I have been questioned about every single thing from the insurance company and told that everything is "not necessary" even when my doctors told me otherwise.

$2.5k is surmountable but the last month was just hellish. I can't be too mad because all my test results came back okay, which was a relief because we weren't sure if I had something life-threatening. I may have a mild condition that woudl require more treatment, but I can't afford more tests yet until insurance is straightened out. Insurance should never prevent people from getting adequate medical care.

I often hear opponents of health care reform (and anything else they once liked until this president also liked it) say that health care is not a right.

I'm sorry, but those people are heartless idiots. We do not just throw our fellow citizens under the bus and tell them, "sorry, you shouldn't get sick/be poor."

One of my friends is technically still married to his ex-wife (they're separated and no longer talk) because without his health insurance plan, she'd die. She's an abusive lunatic who tortured my friend but he's a good person and doesn't want to cut her off that way until she has access to medical insurance, so he was thrilled with the recent news. Needless to say though, this impedes his quality of life. The sooner she's out of his life completely, even on paper, the better.

A classmate of mine experienced heart failure at 21 when her aorta nearly erupted. She was in the ER for two weeks as doctors scrambled to get her a working heart, and she died twice on the table but managed to bring her back and finally save her life. Insurance claimed the surgery wasn't a medical necessity and refused to authorize it, so she was given a bill for over a million dollars (air vaccing someone to a regional hospital and keeping them alive for 2 weeks *in the ER*, not even as an in-patient, doesn't come cheap).

What I don't get is hospital billing. If you went to a restaurant and were presented with 9 bills at the end of the meal for things such as soiled napkins and a dirty plate people would never eat outside the home. When my son had tubes put in his ears in 2005 we were presented with a Past Due bill from the anesthesiologist. United Healthcare said anesthesia had to be paid from our deductible but we did not know that, and if we didn't come up with $700 that week then our credit would take a hit. That 13 minute procedure also resulted in a bill for soiled laundry because some earwax and blood got on the sheets. We were charged for the operating room. We were charged for the medical instruments used by the doctor. It went on and on.

You see a list of billable item, not knowing what you have to pay and what is covered, and you think, "Daaaaang, I really want a single-payer system this very minute.
YES to that last statement, 1000x.

I may have knocked down my bill to $2,000 this morning because i tturns out some stuff is getting covered by my plan. Ludicrously happy right now.
Also, this just reinforces to me the importance of an "Oh Sh!t" fund, which I got from Ramit Sethi (www.iwillteachyoutoberich.com). Everyone should read that guy's financial advice - it'll change your life. Anyway, an "Oh Sh!t" fund is a separate saving account dedicated to funds for when you get these sort of surprises, I have almost $1,000 saved up in mine, so I think I'll be okay. Getting those bills this month while I was waiting on bloodwork results to see if I had a life-threatening condition was more stress than someone should deal with.
Choosing to NOT consume right-wing media is an immensely smart thing to do. As a lefty, it only took me about 15 seconds to get pissed upon tuning in.

But now I realize that even if you're on their side, the effect is the same. Right Wing Media exists solely to get you pissed off and fired up for their cause.

I am a moderate kind of guy who tries to choose the happy path in life. The media I consume cannot leave me feeling worse after consuming it. There's a song I've been trying to write for a long time that is based around the line, "I don't want to be fed by a machine fueled by hate."

My old man wasn't the happiest guy and he was always upset and miserable after listening to soul crushing AM talk radio. If a radio host has to fill 30 minutes based on one quote from an arbitrarily assigned "enemy" you just know that the talk is going to include lots of strawman arguments and character assassination.

I don't need new that agrees with my world, I just need news that is accurate and for my "entertainment" to be entertaining.
Right on. Well said!
And I forgot to say that I have nothing but respect for your career path. You're providing for your family without having to denigrate others for profit. There's something to be said for being in broadcasting with a mission of uplifting the listener.
Well thank you very much. I'm a big fan of how we operate where I am. No politics, no "God will bless you if you give" gimmicks, no guilt tripping.

People need to know that there is room on the radio spectrum for that kind of programming. Broadcasting without manipulating people's emotions is a great thing these days.
I have to admit that I was shocked, but happy, about the ruling. It's the right thing to do for everyone. :-)
The parts that have already been implemented are having positive impacts on people right now. Getting more people insured will be a good thing for America.