Showing posts with label Why we're broke. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Why we're broke. Show all posts

Jan 9, 2013

Makes me sick

The electrical teevee news on CNN and MSNBC was drearier and more banal than usual this morning. So I flipped over to the Fox thigh fest. The theory was that if a guy is going to kill brain cells he might as well try to stir his hormones in compensation. It didn't work very well.  So I shut it all off, got out the check book, and started paying bills, first the health insurance premium.

Now, extreme self-revelation is well and good. Hell, it almost a staple of bloggery, but I'm uncomfortable with it. Readers already know the most intimate facts of  my life -- retired wire service man, political operative, semi-skilled handy man,  a devourer of books with an unhealthy interest in firearms, water sports, and women who manage knees-together allure with bits and pieces of fabric giving a decent scope to a man's imagination.

So I offer my invasion of my own privacy here reluctantly and only in service of larger truth.

 Here's what I spent on health care last year:

About 200 Federal Reserve Cartoons, all out-of-pocket. Broken down, that represents one uninsured prescription renewal, perhaps 30 generic ibuprofen and aspirin tablets, a  partial box of bi-carb,  a few pair of one-dollar reading glasses (1.25 and 1.5 diopters if you must know),  and a modest number of band aids.  Disregarding a spendy surgery -- only partially insured -- to ameliorate a hearing problem years ago, that's a reasonably typical year.

I report this only to claim that I am not a frequent defiler of  the venal healing industry -- either that part of it representing American socialism or its near-relative, my "private" insurance.

My reward? An 18 per cent increase in the already back-breaking premium which has more than doubled in six  years. And if you go by the news, I'm luckier than most.

I talked this over with an insurance expert, an old friend. He said it's complicated (No shit, Sam Spade?) but that if you're looking for a one-word reason, "Obamacare" is accurate. Surprise, isn't it? Who would have thought that free or cheap doctoring for x million more people might require a little extra from people who pay for it?


Al Capp used to get big laughs at the expense of ATT when it held a government-protected monopoly on telephone service.  Ma Bell's ambitions were modest, he admitted. She would happily settle for owning all the wealth in the country. And if you want to draw comparisons between that and His Ineptness's new death grip on you, your doctor, and your insurance company, why, it's okay by me.


Sep 13, 2012

Speaking of goat ropes...

While the Mideast burns, your federal government reminds you that you have an inalienable right to a goat, even if you can't afford it.

A goat enthusiast is capitalizing on the drought which killed much of our nice grass but left some ugly weeds.  Forget that icky 24D. Get a goat.

(Goats) will eat grass but they really prefer things like vines and rose bushes and poison ivy, things that give us problems.” For Iowans who are interested in eco-goats, the federal government has programs to help pay for fencing and watering facilities."


I haven't provoked any local bureaucrats lately; shame on me. This may be my chance.  Imagine their surprise when I request a special-use (eco-goat) permit from the governors of my village, Smugleye-on-Lake. These are the guys who last achieved statewide recognition by making it a criminal act to feed a stray kittie.