Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Trump Budget Punches Poor, Sick, Children & Trump Supporters In The Throat

President Donald J. Trump
While President Donald Trump was traveling abroad his 2018 Federal budget was released. Straight from the White House website it is titled:

"President Trump's Taxpayer First Budget

President Trump's first proposed budget shows respect for the people who pay the bills. The administration's proposal reverses the damaging trends from previous administrations by putting our nation's budget back into balance and reducing our debt through fiscally conservative principles, all the while delivering on President Trump's campaign promise not to cut Social Security retirement or Medicare. The budget's combination of regulatory, tax, and welfare reforms will provide opportunities for economic growth and creation." source :

The above is not a joke, it is directly from the White House website. A simple translation of that title and subtext is that rich people are paying the bills and deserve the spoils. Some budget bullet points:

  • $3.6 trillion in cuts over 10 years
  • Repeal and replace Obamacare - $250 Billion saving (Medicaid cut)
  • Reform Medicaid by giving States the choice between a per capita cap and a block grant - save $610 billion over 10 years (Medicaid cut)
  • The Budget proposes a series of reforms to SNAP (food stamps)  that  close  eligibility  loopholes,  target benefits  to  the  neediest  households,  and  require able-bodied adults to work. Increase state benefit match to 23% by 2023.
  • The Budget proposes a series of reforms to SNAP (food stamps)  that  close  eligibility  loopholes,  target benefits  to  the  neediest  households,  and  require able-bodied adults to work. Increase state benefit match to 23% by 2023. (translation - Kick people off food stamps)
  •  Reform Disability Programs. The Budget proposes to reform disability insurance programs to promote greater LFP(Labor Force Participation). (translation - Kick people off Social Security Disability Insurance) 
  • Reform Federal Employees Retirement Benefits - increasing employee payments to the defined benefit Federal Employee Retirement System pension and reducing  or eliminating cost-of-living adjustments for existing and  future retirees
  • Extend the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) - extended through 2019 with higher state matching in future.
  • Reform Student Loan Programs - Budget eliminates the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program, establishes reforms to  guarantee that all borrowers in IDR pay an equitable share of their income, and eliminates subsidized loans
These are the losers in Trump's 2018 budget, the poor(including children), sick and elderly through Medicaid and social program cuts. Rural areas where a lot of Trump voters that depend on Medicaid and Obamacare live, lose big league.
Who wins in Trump's 2018 budget. Defense spending increase of $52 billion to $639 billion. Immigration and Border security get $71.8 billion. The wealthy get an elimination of the estate tax penalty and a reduction of the business tax rate.  
Source: Trump Budget
Mick Mulvaney, White House Director of management and Budget wrote said in an article published in the Miami Herald, that many social program users were stealing from taxpayers footing the bills because they didn't intent to pay it back. Mulvaney's attitude is a throwback to the era of the welfare queen talk of years gone by, except the reality is that the person being hurt is an elderly White woman in rural America instead of the stereotypical Black woman of urban legends.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

The Death Panel Votes On Healthcare

The Death Panel Votes on Healthcare

Do you remember the shrill screams about death panels deciding who would get access to healthcare before the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare, was passed into law? It did not happen. Well fast forward to 2017 and the same political party that was railing against the passage of Obamacare using the death panel scare tactic is in control of both the Legislative and Executive branches of the United States government. Guess what, they are voting to change health care by ushering in a real death panel or more precisely, death pools.

The aforementioned is not hyperbole. This is how it works. States can set up high risk pools for those with preexisting medical conditions, you know, those people that have not lived "good lives" as one Republican Congressman said who deserved to get cheaper health insurance. I guess living a bad life includes having high blood pressure, Cancer, asthma or severe allergies. It's is like their creating modern day medical leper colonies. The party line is that states will have to apply for a waiver and set up high risk pools to opt out of the community rating provision currently in the Affordable Care Act. Fast forward two years when the Medicaid expansion that supports many of the subsidies that are used to create parity in health cost for everyone without regard to preexisting medical conditions changes and states will be force to create high risk health pools. Yes, there will be access to health care for all, but we are back to at what price. Many with obviously higher medical care costs will be priced out of the market and therein lies the death pool.

Republicans finally found their medical death panel by looking in the mirror.