Archive for Saturday, July 14, 2012

Not a handout

July 14, 2012


To the editor:

The Medicaid expansion outlined in the Affordable Care Act is not a handout. It is a “hand up,” and thousands of Kansans need it. My question to Gov. Brownback is: Who do you really represent?


Claudean McKellips 4 years ago

He represents the Koch brothers and other moneyed interests, obviously not Kansans.

beatrice 4 years ago

Aren't those who live off the working class the monyed interests CM mentioned?

Flap Doodle 4 years ago

RiggsTerry is a lousy, rotten spammer posting lousy, rotten spam.

Cant_have_it_both_ways 4 years ago

My question to Gov. Brownback is: Who do you really represent? ++++++++++++++++++++ Hopefully the taxpayers more than the moochers.

Lori, if you want something, work for it. Don't take it away from those who do.

ivalueamerica 4 years ago

of course your comment is completely and totally dishonest.

you are brainwashed and believe what you are told to believe.

How can asking the wealthy to pay the same tax rate as the middle class and poor be considered taking from them? Only in a fools dream are the wealthy exempt from participating equally in society.

Cant_have_it_both_ways 4 years ago

If you spend half as much time doing something to better yourself instead of looking over your shoulder and/or blaming someone else, you might have something too.

When you take from me and people like me (Producers) and give to people who are just total moochers... How can that be brainwashed... I see it on my income tax returns (The tax you actually pay is buried on the 2nd page of your return) every year.

If you don't like your position in life, do something about it. Don't ask the rest of us who are also trying to scratch out a living to pay your bills. If you don't have enough money for what you want, go live under the bridge until you figure out how to make it on your own. You see, I value America also, just one where everyone who can pays their fair share, not the entitlement America many of you live in. I thank people like you every day when I am up at the crack of dawn doing what I have to do to support my family. I suggest you do the same.

ivalueamerica 4 years ago

again your comments are totally dishonest.

The wealthy and the working class both contribute, to call the working class moochers shows that you have no touch with reality whatsoever.

Kirk Larson 4 years ago

I would bet with a little honest transparency we would find myriad ways in which you as a "producer" benefit from government programs and largess. You are not an island. Just as many of those you label "moochers" are hard working people who make crap wages from stingy "producers" who turn around and disparage the very workers who make their "production" possible. Shame on you, sir.

coco5bosco 4 years ago

Think of all the hard working folks who only make 8 to 12 dollars an hour. Someone has to do those jobs. Does that mean that they dont deserve health insurance? You cant buy meaningful health insurance without a GOOD JOB. what about all the others not as fortunate as you?

Alyosha 4 years ago

"I suggest you do the same." How do you know they don't? Your wild-eyed assumptions are staggering. "You" this and "You people" that. Astounding, really, the level of unexamined projection and sweeping generalizations.

That's just evidence of sloppy thinking.

chootspa 4 years ago

I know this is beyond your comprehension, but some of us are "producers" with real, actual, good-paying jobs and still favor Medicaid expansion.

StirrrThePot 4 years ago

So if you're on Medicaid, you're a mooch?

I'm a taxpayer and Brownback does NOT represent me. I wish he'd take his "representation" elsewhere, and maybe the people who voted for him too.

Alyosha 4 years ago

Yup, the makers are the workers and the takers are the profiteers and Romney types, who did no real work.

I agree, and think that Romney types should put in a lifetime of work to actually earn their money, not make it off others work.

Makers = workers.

Takers = profiteers and Romney types.

Liberty275 4 years ago

Since it's a "hand up" and not a "hand out", you should be OK with a one year limit on medicaid benefits.

Alyosha 4 years ago

You write as if you know the circumstances of commenters — prove that you do, or admit that you are simply making things up, taking wild leaps of assumption to make your groundless (nearly unreadable) points.

Lawrenceks 4 years ago

It is a hand out.

"You cannot legislate the poor into freedom by legislating the wealthy out of freedom. What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving. The government cannot give to anybody anything that the government does not first take from somebody else. When half of the people get the idea that they do not have to work because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get what they work for, that my dear friend, is about the end of any nation. You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it."

ThePilgrim 4 years ago

If you are going to quote someone, please reference the source/person.

parrothead8 4 years ago

I wasn't aware that being taxed a bit higher on earnings over $250k was "being legislated out of freedom." My god, how will they eat?

Also, quoting a Southern Baptist minister doesn't make your point any more credible.

progressive_thinker 4 years ago

This quote is attributed to Pastor Adrian Roberts. You know, the one that tells us that Jesus does not want us to help those who are sick, hungry, and without shelter.....

chootspa 4 years ago

Yes. A minor tax increase on large amounts of income is so "unfreedom," especially when that money could be used to not make sure a working class mother gets treatment for Lupus before she has to get so sick she can no longer work to qualify for benefits. I totally see what you mean and don't at all think you're a caricature barfing up talking points with absolutely no comprehension of the meaning of your words.

ThePilgrim 4 years ago

Current Medicaid benefits under HealthWave (CHIP) include medical insurance for the children of a family of five making up to $62K per year (that's 232% above poverty level). Is that a "hand up" or a "hand out"? You decide.

jafs 4 years ago

Since that's for the children, I'm not sure it makes a difference.

ThePilgrim 4 years ago

Actually it does make a difference. CHIP is difficult to be outspoken against because "think of the children!". Most people would think that it is a good idea to insure children. But it blurs the line later on for whether health insurance is a "right".

jafs 4 years ago

The point is that the distinction between hand "up" and "out" seems rather irrelevant when we're talking about children, who don't have the capacity or the responsibility to be self-sufficient.

Also, 232% is only a little bit more than 2x the poverty level, which is quite low, and hasn't been updated sufficiently to take into account modern costs of living.

I agree that we should be structuring our social programs so as to help adults become more self-sufficient, rather than enabling them to be dependent on those programs. But, in order to do that, there also have to be enough decent paying jobs for people to get as well.

Katara 4 years ago

Isn't funny how people post a link that doesn't say what they claim. There are other requirements families must meet for Healthwave 21 (the part that uses up to 232% of the poverty line).

ThePilgrim 4 years ago

Katara, you imply that I misrefenced or only partially referenced the CHIP requirements. I did not. True, in addition it only applies to people who do not have coverage for their children through their employer (duh) and if the recipient is above the 200% poverty level they have an 8 month waiting period. Irrelevant. It doesn't change the fact that the eligibility income line is remarkably high.

chootspa 4 years ago

Maybe occasionally the state doesn't want uninsured children to die?

Katara 4 years ago

You most certainly misrepresented the CHIP requirements as your comments only addressed income requirements as if they were the only thing for eligibility.

And great, they get coverage for children. What about the adults who cannot afford coverage for themselves? They don't qualify unless they meet the eligibility requirements for Medicaid.

I don't know about you but I prefer it when people are able to work and it is much easier to work and stay working if one is not brought down by a preventable illness or disability.

kuguardgrl13 4 years ago

Preventable or manageable. Being uninsured with type 1 diabetes (the one you're born with) and trying to get through life is very difficult.

chootspa 4 years ago

For the HealthWave 21 program, children must not already be covered by comprehensive and reasonably accessible health insurance. In addition, children whose parents have access to the State group health insurance plan are also not eligible. For families with income over 200%, an 8 month waiting period exists if they have voluntarily dropped comprehensive health insurance.
A premium between $20 and $75 is required for families with income above 150% of the federal poverty level.

ThePilgrim 4 years ago

Correct, but it doesn't change my original contention that $62K is a really high bar for eligibility for Medicaid, even if you pay the small premium.

chootspa 4 years ago

It also doesn't change my contention that it's a very narrow scope, It only covers the children, and they can't have insurance through some other means. They've got an 8 month waiting period. I can't imagine this particular scenario covers a lot of people, unless it's two income families with six or more kids or self-employed heads of household. The employee of a small business, etc,

And frankly, I'd rather the kids be covered. I don't mind paying a little of my tax money for the cause, and yes, I'm a payer, not a beneficiary. It costs us all more in the long run to have kids who go without treatment for diseases.

grimpeur 4 years ago

How poor must a recipient be before these benefits are labeled a handout?

And I agree with the Pilgrim's needs-based assessment: anyone making $60K/year (or more) should not be receiving any tax breaks, welfare payments, food stamps, subsidies, or deductions. Not as a citizen. Not as a corporatIon.

kuguardgrl13 4 years ago

If you're trying to support a family on $60k a year, that's still a challenge. A single adult on $60k a year is doing pretty well for him or herself. But children increase expenses by quite a lot. So a single adult making $60k probably shouldn't receive handouts. A parent making $60k could probably use a tax break.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years ago

The Koch Bros. say we're broke, so Governors like Perry and Brownback say the poor, the disabled, kids and the elderly must pay.

George Lippencott 4 years ago

and for most of them have nothing to show for it - if true

ThePilgrim 4 years ago

"Who cares about the "elderly". They had their chance" And that is the Obama Administration's stance on the elderly. By significantly cutting Medicare to help fund ACA they are giving the message that "you had your chance" and that somehow they are no longer productive enough. This is a remarkably Marxist stance.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years ago

All the cuts to Medicare are made up otherwise. This whining from Republicans about cuts to Medicare is so disingenuous, not only because it doesn't tell the whole story, but because they would completely eliminate Medicare if they could.

Carol Bowen 4 years ago

No, Medicare was not cut. Medicare Advantage, established under president George W. Bush, was cut saving money that was used to subsidized insurance companies for this additional coverage.

Carol Bowen 4 years ago

And this from

"Romney repeated a number of distortions, saying that the law would “cut Medicare” by $500 billion and that it “adds trillions to our deficits.” That’s a reduction in the future growth of Medicare spending over 10 years. And CBO says the law would reduce the deficit."

This one is easy. After the boomer generation, the senior population decreases (fewer children per family). All we have to do is wait.

Carol Bowen 4 years ago

P.S. There are gigs to Obama's comments, as well, but not specific to this comment. See

Brock Masters 4 years ago

Ms. Wagner your letter is counterproductive and you do a disservice to those that would be helped by the medicaid expansion. When you insult the intelligence of those that are on the fence or opposed to the expansion by lying about it you solidify their opposition. In no way can it be considered a hand up. You know it and so does everyone else.

Now that isn't to say that providing access to affordable care to people that can't currently afford it isn't a good idea, it probably is. But lying about it just makes people close their minds to the idea.

Stick to facts and not lies.

jafs 4 years ago

Do you have any statistics or sources to back up your claim? I'd be interested in them, to see how many of those on Medicaid stay there and how many work themselves up from there.

Brock Masters 4 years ago

Jafs look up the definition of a hand out. Doesn't matter if they get off or not it is still a hand out. My point isn't whether it is a good program or not but simply don't lie. There are enough honest reasons to justify it without trying to sugar coat it.

jafs 4 years ago

Umm, that's not true at all - if the program serves as a temporary aid that helps people get on their feet, it is exactly the definition of a "hand up".

Brock Masters 4 years ago

Check this article out. Also since medicaide is intended for kids I suppose you can say they all get off untilmtheynretire.

jafs 4 years ago

For some reason, that link didn't work.

Also, are you saying that helping kids is a "hand out" and something we shouldn't be doing?

Brock Masters 4 years ago

jafs it is a hand out. A hand out is something you give to the needy. Calling it a hand up is just a way of making the person taking it feel better about it.

You pass a homeless person on Mass and give him a couple of bucks - it is a hand out. Doesn't mean you shouldn't do it but it is a handout.

I posted on here that Medicaid for children is a needed program

Don't know why the link didn't work but it was an article about elderly people who get Medicaid for their nursing home care. The concern was that they give away the money they have to their kids to qualify.

My point was simply be honest about it. Don't write a letter with BS - it is counterproductive to do so. Write a honest letter explaining the benefits of the program instead.

jafs 4 years ago

The difference between "hand up" and "hand out" is generally considered to be the difference between helping people get back on their feet and support themselves vs. enabling them to continue to be dependent on others.

Children, who aren't capable of self-sufficiency nor have the responsibility to be such, shouldn't be expected to be, so "hand ups" for kids don't make sense.

If you give a homeless guy a couple of dollars, that is in fact a "hand out" - however, if you give him help to get a job, find a place to live, etc. that would be a "hand up", right?

The original question was whether Medicaid functions as the former or the latter - that's why I asked for some sources or statistics.

Medicaid only kicks in if you have virtually no assets, so many people spend them all before qualifying - it's a problem with the structure of the program, in my view, and should be changed. If it didn't work that way, there wouldn't be the incentive to give your money to your kids and then go on Medicaid. Part of the problem, of course, is that nursing home care is very expensive.

Brock Masters 4 years ago

Perhaps we just call it "assistance"

Anthony Mall 4 years ago

I'm confused by the comment "what the people want"... The majority of people don't want this, 5 more democrats came out to repeal it in the vote this week, and tour facts make no sence... It is the largest tax in the history of this country, done by a president who hasn't accomplished anything, lost the trust of his own party, protected his AG by not releasing all of the information, and does nothing but blame Bush for 4 years... At some point this loser needs to take responsibility for his lack of action... Not a big Romney fan but Obama has to go... Please feel free to fact check...

Brock Masters 4 years ago

@reality The number of people entering the poverty roll has increased under Obama. The number of unemployeed has increased under Obama and so has our deficit. He has lied to his base and to those that didn't support him from the beginning.

Obama has promoted class and race warfare and has done nothing to unite this country nor improve our international image.

He has authorized the killing of Americans who have not been charged or convicted of a crime, but only suspected of terrorist activity.

He has just taken out a key part of welfare reform, championed by Bill Clinton, the requirement for able body recipients to work. He did this without debate or Congressional approval and for no apparent reason other than to garner votes.

Obama has failed and must be fired.

Gotalife 4 years ago

Freddymertz you are totally delusional.

Brock Masters 4 years ago


Just saying something doesn't make it so. Got a point that you can back up? Tell me which of my statements above is false?

I'll concede the statement about him being divisive is subjective, but the others should be pretty easy to dispute if they are false, which they are not.

Gotalife 4 years ago

How about you prove it instead and not with FOX news dribble. I am sure that will take a very very long time to cut and paste the words of others' stupidity. Thanks for the laughs!

Brock Masters 4 years ago

gotalife is that all you have? Come on, prove me wrong on just one of the facts I stated?

Do you deny more people are at the poverty level now than when Obama has taken office?

Do you deny that more people are unemployeed now then when he took office?

Do you deny that he authorized the killing of Americans not charged or convicted of a crime?

Do you deny that he just proposed to waive the work requirement for able body people receiving assistance?

Do you deny that he promised to close GITMO and didn't?

Do you deny that he campaigned against the Patriot act but has kept it when he could have gotten rid of it?

Tell me which of these is not true?

Katara 4 years ago


More people are at the poverty level and are unemployed due to the recession. Obama did not cause the recession. It was years in the making.

And he didn't propose to waive the work requirement for able bodied welfare recipients. He is allowing the states to have more flexibility on how they want to meet the requirements.

"States will not be able to escape the work requirements of the landmark 1996 federal welfare reform law, the administration said, but they may get federal approval to try to accomplish the same goals by using different methods than those spelled out in the legislation.",98711

I thought giving the states more control was one of the talking points for Republicans. If it is good enough for abortion and gay marriage arguments, why isn't giving the states more control on how to meet the work to welfare requirements good now?

Brock Masters 4 years ago


If Obama gets praise for the good things that happen under his watch like killing Bin Laden isn't he also responsible for the bad things? My point isn't that Obama caused the poverty level to rise or high unemployment but that his policies have failed to reverse course.

As for the welfare issue he has no authority to give the states more control and why mess with it? Why act unilaterally without discussion and assurances that the states will be able to let people not work?

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years ago

"My point isn't that Obama caused the poverty level to rise or high unemployment but that his policies have failed to reverse course."

The only thing that could reverse the course of a downwardly spiraling economy is massive government stimulus spending, something this Congress will never allow. I think he certainly does deserve criticism for not stating that loudly, clearly and repeatedly, and instead trying for a muddled middle course.

But you're saying that full-out Republican austerity should now be tried, even though it will without a doubt drive the economy even further into recession.

Brock Masters 4 years ago

Nope not what I am saying at all. Extremes generally are bad. Confidence in a presidents leadership is an important factor in a recovery. A true leader can lead even with different parties plus he had a D controlled senate and house for two years. Heck he can't even get his party to pas his budget now. He is a failure.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years ago

But you're still deluding yourself that electing Romney (and more Republicans) will lead to an improvement, when quite clearly it will make things dramatically worse.

The only advantage I can see to electing Republicans to anything is that maybe, just maybe, things have to get orders of magnitude worse before people begin to wake up.

Topple 4 years ago

So you're suggesting that if we elected Romney, people would soon wake up and realize we want Obama back?

You can't be serious.

Katara 4 years ago

That is an asinine point then.

And nice attempt at moving the goalposts. You said nothing about the issue being that his policies failed to reverse the course. Your remarks most definitely implied that Obama was the cause.

Do you really expect problems that were years in the making to be solved quickly? I certainly don't.

As for welfare, many of the programs are block grants so yes, the states can have more control. There is no waiving of the work requirement as you so falsely assert. The states are allowed to try different methods on meeting the current standards.

Brock Masters 4 years ago

show me in the current law where there is a provision for the states to deviate from the current work rules? There isn't one.

Yes make excuses for Obama's failed policies. We know it is Bush's fault. Obama has lied. He has broken promises and he has no viable plan to right the economy. What will he do differently if re-elected? More of the same?

Perhaps the problems can't be solved overnight but you'd expect to see progress. Unemployment wasn't suppose to get over 8%. When was the last time it has been below it?

And Obama has said the private sector is doing just fine. He doesn't even realize there is a problem.

FAIL = Obama

Katara 4 years ago

Perhaps you lack an understanding with how block grants work?

Expecting a problem to be solved immediately when it took years to create is now considered an excuse? Who knew that reasonable expectations are now excuses?

And there has been progress. The stock market and increased consumer confidence shows some progress. I guess you rather not acknowledge it because then you couldn't dismiss it with a lame "FAIL = Obama".

kuguardgrl13 4 years ago

Most presidents once elected break their campaign promises. They make lofty statements to get elected and then realize that those things are difficult or impossible once they get elected.

The economics professors at KU will tell you that it will take time to fix the economy just as it took time to create this mess. We don't live in the 1930s where economic crises can be fixed with creating construction jobs and manufacturing for a war. War (or rather, police action) has only exacerbated our economic problems, and manufacturing jobs are being outsourced. We're lacking in service jobs like accounting and IT. Unfortunately those are hard to create since companies aren't willing to lose profits for employee salaries.

Romney is a puppet of the GOP who will let the tea baggers run rampant. While things may not drastically improve with another 4 years of Obama, at least they won't get worse.

Brock Masters 4 years ago

I see you have nothing. Just silly words with no substance. if I were accusing someone of being delusional and they laid out facts that I believed were wrong I'd be quick to prove them wrong.

And as I said, I don't watch watch except of Shepard Smith on occassion. I like CNN better.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years ago

Obama is certainly deserving of much criticism, but at least be honest by admitting that A) the Republicans are largely responsible for the collapse of the economy five years ago, B) their obstructionism over the last 3 1/2 years is largely responsible for the continued economic stagnation, and C) neither the election of McCain in 2008 nor the election of Romney in 2012 would do anything to bring any relief to the working and middle class.

Are you honestly saying that class and race warfare are all because of Obama? Race-based politics has been near-official Republican policy ever since Nixon's "southern strategy," right through so-called "Reagan Democrats," and it persists today. And class warfare has been very much Republican policy ever since Reagan, and the massive redistribution of wealth to the 0.1% over that time is it's undeniable result (income and wealth inequality hasn't been this great since just before the crash of 1929.)

While I don't like the drone murder campaigns any more than you do, a Republican administration will almost certainly bring with it even more foreign military adventurism and all the violence, death and destruction that comes with it.

Brock Masters 4 years ago

Bush left a mess with his wars, his abuse of the Constitution. I don't deny it and I spoke against it when he was in office.

Yes, we've had a divided country for sometime, but Obama has deepened the divide and hasn't even tried to bring people together.

We are not better off today then when Obama took office so I am not willing to give Obama 4 more years. If Romney wins and fails I'll be looking to replace him too.

The dems in the KS legislature constantly vote against Brownback - are they too obstructionist? One man's obstructionist is another man's defender of right.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years ago

There was absolutely nothing that Obama could have done to unite the country given that Republicans set out very specifically and intentionally to be as divisive and obstructionist as they could. And, sadly, they succeeded beyond their wildest dreams, and we're paying the price for their political successes.

That's not to say that Obama is beyond criticism, but bringing in Romney to repeat the same failed fairy-tale policies that the Republicans have foisted on us over the last 30 years, and expecting a different result, is orders of magnitude more frightening than 4 more years of Obama.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years ago

"The dems in the KS legislature constantly vote against Brownback - are they too obstructionist?"

The ultra-conservative Republicans who have taken nearly complete control of the legislature and the governor's mansion are batchit insane. Obama and the Democrats in Washington suffer from the same corruption that affects both sides of the aisle, but they aren't insane.

George Lippencott 4 years ago


I guess it is as you say it is because you say so.

I believe that both parties are equally responsible for the economic mess to begin with by providing government guarantees for risky investments

I believe that Democratic have refused to work with Republicans. Compromise requires both to give in. Demanding a 100% increase in some social service and then offering to compromise at 50% is not compromise.

The use of the word insane is inflammatory and absolutely inconsistent with the notion of compromise or even reasoned discussion. I note you are very adept at using such words to describe those with whom you disagree.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years ago

"I believe that both parties are equally responsible for the economic mess to begin with by providing government guarantees for risky investments"

I'd say it's more like a 60-40 split. Democrats get the 40 because they've learned that corruption has its own rewards (and if you can't beat 'em, join 'em,) and Republicans because that corruption has been official party policy for a long time.

"Demanding a 100% increase in some social service and then offering to compromise at 50% is not compromise."

Why, because you say so? It really depends on the specific circumstances. Just throwing it out as an aphorism isn't particularly useful to the discussion.

"The use of the word insane is inflammatory and absolutely inconsistent with the notion of compromise or even reasoned discussion."

Is stating the truth "inflammatory?" And how do you compromise with insanity, anyway?

George Lippencott 4 years ago

No, old soviet approach during cold war. We were wiswe enough then to avoid.. Compromise is when one side demands 20 cows and the other 20 horses and we buy 10 pigs. Insanity has a specific definition and is not subject to your jolly application

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 4 years ago

"The dems in the KS legislature constantly vote against Brownback - are they too obstructionist?"

And one other important distinction-- Democrats in the Kansas legislature do make an attempt to work with the majority to craft as good legislation as possible. Republicans in Congress in Washington have made it official policy to not cooperate in ANY way with the Obama administration-- Obamacare is a prime example of legislation in which Obama went out of his way to craft legislation that contained many, many Republican ideas, and created as system that is still very much privately based, but even there (especially there) Republicans sat on their hands because they didn't want Obama to have anything that he could point to as an accomplishment.

They've had one goal, and one goal only over the last four years-- obstruct Obama and the Democrats, even if the country suffers for it.

George Lippencott 4 years ago

Says you. I think the lack of compromise says they both are pursuing political goals and not working to govern the country

Enlightenment 4 years ago

Largest tax in history is conservative rhetoric. Obama’s supposedly sweeping tax — his penalty for noncompliance — will be levied on a grand total of 1.2 percent of the American people.

So says the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, in its projections for 2016. This means that 98.8 percent will not pay a cent, because virtually all Americans will already have health coverage, will have obtained coverage for the first time, thanks to federal subsidies and tax credits, or will be exempt from the penalty, because of economic hardship or religious beliefs.

The penalized 1.2 percent will be those Americans who can well afford coverage but simply refuse to buy it.

Brock Masters 4 years ago

You mean the middle class? Those whose tax Obama promised not to raise?

Brock Masters 4 years ago

I watch CNN mostly. Very seldom watch FOX news.

Am I wrong that the middle class are the ones most likely to have to pay the tax for not buying health insurance and did Obama promise not to raise taxes on the middle class?

chootspa 4 years ago

No. That particular "tax" only targets moochers, and it's not really that high of a penalty, anyway. This whole "middle class tax hike" framing is utter bull. Just ask "retroactive Romney" about it back when he thought Romneycare was awesome.

Gotalife 4 years ago

Enlightenment thanks for bringing some real knowledge to the conversation. It's amazing what intellect can do to a conversation thread ....LOL

George Lippencott 4 years ago

Become enlightened and understand how the CBO works. 1. They do ten years 2. They use the approach proposed (no Roberts there)

If Mr. Obama has onetime 500B reductions in Medicare -he does - CBO counts it so Obama care is 500 B cheaper than it is. If there is a proposal to save money the CBO pretty much accepts it although there may be significant disagreement as to how well the proposal will work. If the costs for the program start 5 years into the programs but the revenues starts immediately they also accept that further understating costs by half.

Like it or not Obama care will cost a lot more than it is advertised to cost and those costs will have to come from the tax paying portion of the middle class as we both despair of any real tax on the rich.

Wow, it costs nothing.

George Lippencott 4 years ago

I can think of little more offensive than listening to Mr. O'Reilly about how taxing the wealthy an additional 4% will destroy our economy. That is except the dedicated liberals that think those additional taxes will pay for the near trillion dollar a year increase already made in our federal expenditures - mostly for expansion of the social safety net.

The only way we can pay for that is to tax the half of us that pay federal income tax as that is the source to pay for all the additions. We are not talking $20 a month here but thousands of dollars a year on a family making $80K a year.

The unidentified quote above about the result of continuing to take from those who actually work could not be more accurate as to impact. Back before Reagan when a dollar increase in our family income yielded about a 35 cent increase in our standard of living the way was very clear

George Lippencott 4 years ago

Only if you did them all and then people making 89K get to pay several thousand more in taxes. Not sure they see it your way

chootspa 4 years ago

"They" isn't necessarily a group exclusive of me, and I'd be fine with it. My basic needs are met, and that's just a dent on wants. I'm tired of it being part of hostage negotiations, and we're all going to have to give them up eventually. However, even the raise just on those with incomes over $200k would still raise over $700 billion in the course of ten years.

Enlightenment 4 years ago

I don't begrudge anyone their wealth, but I do believe in being committed to the overall well being of all people. I'm ready to pull my weight and pitch in for those who can't. Can't does not mean "won't" and these days poor is NOT a choice. We need to help each other and quit bitching. Healthcare access is necessary for a compassionate society.

George Lippencott 4 years ago

Absolutely. That said it needs to be fair in both availability and cost. The richy use for fee for service and get real quality. The middle use insurance and get managed care. the por use government programs an dget the same as those in medicare.

Obama care does not parse that just runs up the bill for the middle class.

George Lippencott 4 years ago

I made 70 and there was no dental care in my youth.

kuguardgrl13 4 years ago

Sure, I'll drop out of college, qualify for medicare, and use wilbur's tax money to live.

You're basing this off of the overweight babyboomers. We don't yet know about Gen X, Gen Y, and the millenials. Grew up with fluoride in the water and lots of vaccinations as an infant and toddler. Been going to a dentist twice a year for my entire life and saw an orthodontist. I pride myself in being a reasonably healthy young adult.

If the current generation drops out of college, who's going to pay for your hospital or nursing home bills?

ThePilgrim 4 years ago

"The Medicaid expansion outlined in the Affordable Care Act", as Ms. Wagner writes in her letter to the editor, will be significant with Obamacare - hundred of thousands of people will be reclassified as Medicaid recipients. That is why Brownback and Republican governors are resisting Obamacare, despite the Supreme Court decision. It will bankrupt the states. Add to that the Ryan budget which cuts funding for Obamacare and the Medicaid expansion behind the scenes, and we have a debacle in the making. And just like employers dumping pensions when 401K's became available, employers will dump insured and they will go on Medicaid or be forced to buy insurance from the exchange on their own, at high prices. And most people don't realize that Obamacare doesn't give you free or fair priced medical insurance. It dumps you onto an exchange where you have to buy insurance at inflated prices. When the insurance companies have mandatory customers it won't drive costs down, it will drive them sky high.

jafs 4 years ago

Well, according to what I've seen, the feds will carry the overwhelming burden of the expansion, if states choose to go for it, which is voluntary.

It is probable that employers, especially ones that have fewer than 50 employees, who won't have to pay the fine, may choose not to offer health insurance. However, the exchanges are designed to be affordable, and there are generous subsidies for many folks.

Since the fines are quite small relative to income, and don't kick in for up to 4x the poverty level, the insurance companies won't have "mandatory" customers, and will probably have an incentive to offer affordable coverage in order to attract customers.

I agree the bill is quite flawed, and too complicated - there are much simpler ways of improving health care.

Brock Masters 4 years ago

Kansas will ultimately be responsible for 10 percent of the cost. Doesn't sound like much but based on the large number of new recipients it may be significant.

jafs 4 years ago

Only if they choose to expand the program.

And, I was responding to "bankrupt the states" - if a state doesn't want to expand Medicaid, it will have no effect at all on their financial situation.

chootspa 4 years ago

Based on the money we'd save in emergency room fees and unpaid hospital bills, I suspect we'd recoup that cost in no time. Plus, you know, Christianly love of thy neighbor and all that.

progressive_thinker 4 years ago

You are correct, the burden of the expansion is carried by the fed. Starting in 2014, the federal government will pay 100 percent of the new costs. Starting in 2017, the federal share will gradually decline until it reaches 90 percent in 2020, where it will remain.

What has been missed by many is that the medicaid expansion is partially paid for by a reduction in medicaid rates paid to providers. The theory is that providers will come out financially because they will have less instances where they go unpaid.

Now with the medicaid expansion being optional, the medical providers are potentially left with the worst of both worlds. Reduction in rates, and no expansion of the paying pool.

I suspect that there is a huge amount of lobbying by the health care industry going on to get Kansas and other states to buy in to this. I am sure that our illustrious governor is painfully aware of this, and suspect that this is why he has been largely mum on the matter.

George Lippencott 4 years ago

Where is all the money for the subsidies and other federal payments. Just because we will not pay it here does not mean we will not pay it there. In fact Federal Taxes will end up taking more.

jafs 4 years ago

That's a very good question - I've asked it of several people.

So far, I haven't gotten a good answer to it.

chootspa 4 years ago

Or we could continue to pay higher hospital bills as they jack us to recoup the losses they incur by treating people who are uninsured and unable to pay.

jafs 4 years ago

How exactly does that work?

In my experience, insurance companies set maximum levels of compensation for various procedures, so there's a limit to how much providers can charge.

And, uninsured people often can't pay large bills.

So, who's paying for those costs and how exactly?

ThePilgrim 4 years ago

Most of the ideas in Obamacare, including exchanges and mandatory insurance, were Republican ideas in McCain and Bush camps.

George Lippencott 4 years ago

Yup but not packaged the way Obama has. Most of us support many of the reforms. Many of us do not support the massive subsidies that will come out of our hides.

chootspa 4 years ago

Actually, pretty close to packaged exactly as they were under Romneycare. Romney gave a larger subsidy to fewer people (up to 300 percent of poverty) while Obama gives less money to more people (up to 400 percent of poverty), but that's not really a substantive difference.

Carol Bowen 4 years ago

In most discussions about Medicaid, very little is said about the elderly. Is it because no one knows that our elder system depends on Medicaid? A senior has to use up all their reserves, to receive assistance through Medicaid. This is not an exclusive group. It will happen to many of us.

It's a sad way to end a life - giving up everything to get medical assistance. No integrity. Oh by the way, has anyone mentioned that one of the leading causes of bankruptcy is medical bills? These folks end up on Medicaid, too.

George Lippencott 4 years ago

A significant number of seniors are on Medicaid as opposed to Medicare

George Lippencott 4 years ago

Yep - AARP has. Will pull up tomorrow and send you

Richard Heckler 4 years ago

Answer: Koch brothers and their extensive investments in the medical insurance industry.

Also it is possible Sam Brownback is a shareholder in the health insurance industry.

It is difficult for an industry that receives more than a trillion health insurance $$$$ annually insuring government employees to lose money. The medical insurance industry is a sure bet for investors.

There are plenty of elected officials as shareholders = why they protect this industry.

CEO's walk away with handsome golden parachutes such as a $73 million retirement bonus which could insure several thousand families.

Richard Heckler 4 years ago

Demand Medicare Single Payer Insurance for All petition

Let the consumers decide!


IMPROVED Medicare Single Payer Insurance for ALL would cover every person for all necessary medical care 24/7 to include: Wellness prescription drugs hospital surgical outpatient services primary and preventive care emergency services dental mental health home health physical therapy rehabilitation (including for substance abuse) vision care hearing services including hearing aids chiropractic durable medical equipment palliative care * long term care

No deductibles No Co-pays


Allow IMPROVED Medicare Single Payer Insurance for ALL to be available now! We taxpaying consumers want to make the choice. The mechanism is in place as we speak.

Health care in and of itself will remain a private industry.

IMPROVED Medicare Single Payer Insurance for All leaves choice of doctors,clinics,hospital and services across the board to the consumer.

Flap Doodle 4 years ago

All paid for with other peoples' money.

Carol Bowen 4 years ago

An ideal situation of major proportions, but not realistic. There are too many economic variables. It would turn the country inside out. Say what you will about Obamacare, but it's a start at pulling together what we have. A lot more needs to be done. Let's move forward.

Peter Macfarlane 4 years ago

Since the governor already has his health insurance (from two sources: the feds and his state insurance) that covers his family, why would he care about helping those that can't afford it?

Brock Masters 4 years ago

Duh! For the same reason anyone else who has health insurance wants to help others. You do realize that those in power to help others get insurance have it themselves.

Richard Heckler 4 years ago

IMPROVED Medicare Single Payer Insurance for ALL would cover every person for all necessary medical care 24/7 to include:

Wellness /prescription drugs / hospital / surgical / outpatient services / primary and preventive care / emergency services / dental / mental health / home health / physical therapy / rehabilitation (including for substance abuse) / vision care / hearing services including hearing aids / chiropractic / medical equipment / palliative care / long term care

No deductibles / No Co-pays

Flap Doodle 4 years ago

Pie, sky. (copy and paste as necessary)

Flap Doodle 4 years ago

From those clever individuals at the peoples' cube.

Carol Bowen 4 years ago

Suggestion for improving healthcare:

Our current healthcare and welfare systems operate on subtraction schemes that force recipients to remain in the system. We need to teach these folks how to become responsible and provide a system that allows them to do so.

Now, before someone takes off on my right wing or my left wing, know that I do have experience in this arena, and I do not want to cause anybody harm. I think this topic needs to be brought forward with no Ill inttent, discussed, and resolved. I believe that everyone would be happier in charge of their own lives.

chootspa 4 years ago

I think we'd all be better off in the same system, but I'm a pinko lefty single payer supporter. The current system shackles the poor to medicaid, but it also shackles the middle class to their employer. If we no longer had to worry about medical expenses, a lot more people would leave their employers to start their own business and do something truly innovative.

StirrrThePot 4 years ago

You people and your "oh noez we'll have no freedom left if blah blah blah" You're so arrogant and pampered having grown up in this country. If you want to see "unfreedom", move your rear end to Afghanistan for a year. Then come back and tell me about "unfreedom'.

I'll wait.

tbaker 4 years ago

For your "hand-up" to work, people will be forced to pay more taxes Ms. Wagner. I bet you think forcing them to do so is some mutated form of compassion.

It is amazing to me how many people think that voting for / advocating the act of government giving fill-in-the-blank group of “needy” people money is some species of compassion. Helping the poor and suffering people yourself is compassion. Thinking it is a good idea for our government to use guns to take money from one group and give the money to the poor and suffering people (to “help” them) is immoral, self-righteous bullying statist laziness. People need to be fed, medicated, educated, clothed and sheltered, etc. If we are compassionate, we’ll help those who cannot help themselves, but you get no moral credit for forcing other people to do what you think is right. There is great joy in helping people, but no joy in doing it at gunpoint. Yes I said “gunpoint.” Don’t pay your taxes and men with guns will come take you to prison.

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