I would like to think that as much as we can disagree about politics, religion, economics, sex, and philosophies there are some points where there is common ground- where we can work together. When we work on one thing who knows, maybe it will lead to other arenas! (Am I Too optimistic)?  I KNOW that we will ALL agree on what follows:

If the Affordable Health care Act stays, is dismantled or if the model of health care is based solely on a free market concept, we will have a MUCH better system for most Americans. If members of the U.S. Congress, Executive Branch including the President and his staff, and employees of the Federal government ALL had health care programs that were EXACTLY the same as what is available to all the rest of us our health care system would be better. For example, did you know that Congressmen and women as soon as they are sworn in,  may participate in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHBP). The program offers an assortment of health plans from which to choose, including fee-for-service, point-of-service, and health maintenance organizations (HMOs). In addition, Congress members can also insure their spouses and their dependents. Up and to this point you might say, well, that is OK. Here is the rub!!!!!! The government pays up to 75 percent of the premium! So, while deductibles are rising and employers contribute less to an employee’s health plan, YOU contribute 75% of the cost of premiums for health care insurance for members of the U.S. Congress. According to the St. Petersburg Times, “Members of Congress have their own pharmacy, right in the Capitol. They also have a team of doctors, technicians and nurses standing by in case something busts in a filibuster. They can get a physical exam, an X-ray or an electrocardiogram, without leaving work.” Is that in the Affordable Health Care Act for all of us? Do Tea Party Congressional members take advantage of this? Although members pay extra for these services – Representatives pay about $300 per month, and Senators about $600 – taxpayers end up kicking in another $2 million. That’s $2 million not being spent on those who need it. But, it is NOT just the $2 million which is a drop in the bucket with regard to money pissed off by our government. It is that these folks do not face the same pressures as the rest of us and do you REALLY think they can make decisions for the public if they do not “feel our pain”? By the way as best as I can figure it out, all of these benefits and Federal subsidy for premiums continue in retirement even after one term in office. Not bad!

Now the President:

The White House medical unit, with a staff of four doctors plus nurses and physicians’ obama and white houseassistants, is steps from his office. Treatment is free for Obama and his family which includes his mother-in law (as well as for the vice president and his family).Why his mother-in- law? She can make an appointment like the rest of us in the GW walk in clinic in DC!!!! Do they accept her Medicare?

During the president’s travels, a doctor and nurse ride in a limousine in his motorcade. An emergency medical technician comes too, with an ambulance.

Air Force One is stocked with equipment for an on-board operating room. On overseas trips, two medical teams usually travel with the president, one on the plane and one pre-positioned on the ground so the president will always have a rested doctor and nurse at the ready. The first family receives VIP treatment at military hospitals. And Obama has virtually instant access to medical specialists that few, if any, Americans could duplicate.

“If the president comes to us this morning with a mole on his cheek, a dermatologist will be seeing him today,” said Dr. Rob Darling, a retired Navy captain who was a White House physician for President Clinton. At military hospitals, the president typically is not charged for outpatient care, said a White House official who declined to be identified. The president’s insurance carrier is usually billed for inpatient care, but the hospital’s commander has authority to waive the fees if the administrative expense of applying for reimbursement would exceed the payment to the hospital, the official said. When the president’s insurance carrier is billed, he is responsible for copays and deductibles, the official said. Now this does make sense for many reasons- military and administrative. We should protect the President of the United States. But, after the presidency his benefits are at least comparable to a member of Congress if not MUCH better for him and his family. (I can’t find out all of the details yet. It could affect national security!)

IF members of Congress got the SAME care that we got (same doctors and facilities on call in Congress and NO pharmacy and a much smaller contribution to their health care benefits just like industry is cutting down, we sure as heck would get better thought out care for all- free market or federally based! If the President looked forward to getting what we all get AFTER the presidency (including his wife and kids) things would be different. My Lord the Congress and the President might actually start sweating it! Forgive my Bronxeze, it’s all bull, lies, deception! No? The President and First Lady encourage us all to support a public education! BUT, in do as I say, not as I do fashion, their kids go to PRIVATE school. Politician hypocrisy is not confined to a Populist US President. No sir! It’s the ruling class (right or left) vs. the rest of us dooffises. Ask Romney. Why his lovely wife explained recently that she and Mitt felt the pain of the cost of college education when they had to tap some of their reserves to pay for the kids! Tisk, Tisk.

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