RUSH: Betsy McCaughey -- who's one of the ranking analysts of socialist medicine, socialized medicine, be it Hillarycare or Obamacare -- has a piece at Investors.com, the old Investor's Business Daily, and headline of the piece says, "Think Obamacare Is Bad Now? It Gets Worse Next Year." Okay, now, what gets worse next year?
Well, here's how she starts the piece: "'Substandard' and 'cut-rate' is what President Obama calls the health plans that millions of Americans have lost, even though they wanted to keep them. Backpedaling on his promise that 'if you like your plan, you can keep your plan,' Obama is now telling Americans another whopper: The insurance they can get on Obamacare exchanges is a better deal. Don't believe him. On the exchanges, you may no longer be able to use the doctors and hospitals you prefer.
"Many exchange plans exclude the top-drawer academic hospitals like Cedars Sinai in Los Angeles, the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota and New York Presbyterian in New York City. Instead, the law says exchange plans must cover care at 'essential community providers ... that serve predominantly low-income, medically underserved individuals.'" That's from the law itself. "That means clinics, public hospitals and hospitals largely serving the Medicaid community" is where the majority of exchange plans will work.
You do not get the top-drawer hospitals and clinics. Those are reserved for people who will pay out of their pocket and will not have insurance. "Yet the president claims that people losing their health plans and having to sign up on the exchanges will be getting a better deal," and he is. That's what Jay Carney was trying to say yesterday, as they continue to lie about this law. It's just astounding. They are compounding their one lie with another.
I mean, they're just continuing to tell lies here, and they sent Carney out to say yesterday, "Well, of course the president doesn't like what's going on here! He doesn't like these substandard plans that people had, and what is gonna happen here is that people, when they lose their plan and sign up they're gonna get a better deal. Who's opposed to that? So here's what they're defining as "getting a better deal." It's losing your doctor, losing your existing plan that you liked, now having to shop blind on a website that doesn't work for a health plan.
Settling for Medicaid-level care and government controls at underserved hospitals and clinics, all for a premium that's on average 41% higher than what you were paying. That, somehow, is a better deal. Here is the piece de resistance"Wait until the other shoe drops in 2014..." Do you know what that other shoe to drop is? All we're talking about now is people who are losing individual insurance, meaning you have gone to an insurance company and bought an individual policy, and you may be lumped in with another group.
But right now, that's the only thing affected is individual policies. Nevertheless, even though that limited number of people is affected, that limited number of people is causing all of this havoc. The other shoe to drop in 2014 is when this I same thing starts happening to people who get their health care at work. We're not talking about employer-provided coverage here yet. That shoe doesn't drop until next year. Right now, it's just the individual insurance market that's being affected by the exchanges.
It's just the individuals who are unable to keep the plan they like. Wait until everybody who's insured by their boss begins to lose their plan! That happens in January of next year. Then all hell is gonna break loose because then we're talking about the vast majority of the people in this country. Admittedly, folks, the individual insurance market is not the major part of it. I mean, how many of you...? Let me just ask you the question. How many of you have a health insurance policy, or had, that you went out and bought yourself?
Show of hands. Let me see. Probably two out of 10 people. The vast majority of people get their health insurance at work, and none of this impacted them. They haven't lost their plans yet. They haven't had their plans taken away from 'em. Their premiums and all that stuff hasn't gone up yet. That doesn't happen in the employer-provided market until January. Now, wait until 80% of people with health insurance start being impacted by Obamacare, and it's gonna make what's happening now look like Romper Room.
See, if you get your insurance at work as an employee benefit, none of what's being discussed here really has impacted you yet. About the only way it has is maybe you've been converted to part time. You may have lost your health insurance at work because your company can't stay in business with the new rules. But for those of you who still get health insurance at work -- and there's one exception, talked about it yesterday. If your company is self-insured none of this is gonna matter to you until they get around to fixing it so that you do get hurt by it.
Right now the self-insured market is not impacted by any of this. There aren't any rules or restrictions in the self-insured market. And again, the self-insured market is when your boss, your company, just pays for your health care directly, without an insurance policy. They set aside the same amount of money to insure everybody that works there. An employee goes to the doctor, has to get an operation, the company pays the hospital directly, the doctor directly, not an insurance company. That's called self-insure. And Obamacare doesn't touch them. Republicans got a carve-out for that. Now the Democrats are trying to fix that.
So the only way that you who have your insurance through your boss will not be impacted in January is if your company self-insures, and I don't know how many it is. But the point that Betsy McCaughey's making is that right now we're just talking about the individual insurance market, and let's face it, the percentage of Americans who go out and buy their own health insurance like they buy hotel rooms is tiny. Most people are insured at work. Wait 'til they start losing their policies. Wait 'til they lose their plans that they like. We're talking tons and tons of people. That's the other shoe to drop in 2014. Nobody's brought it up yet. I just want you to have a heads-up.
RUSH: This is Brian in Philadelphia. I knew this was gonna happen. Brian, great to have you on the program. Hello, sir.
CALLER: Thanks for having me, Rush. I was calling about you mentioned employers were about to get it. I just got my letter in the mail from Aetna saying that they cannot renew my employer existing plan in 2014.
RUSH: Yep. Yep. See, this is the other shoe to drop in 2014. When did you get it, like this week?
CALLER: Yeah, I just got it. It's addressed November 1st, and the renewal date is for February 1st, so in the next couple months I'll have a whole new policy and next year --
RUSH: So you're gonna lose the plan that you have. Do you like the plan that you've got?
CALLER: Oh, yeah, it's an excellent plan.
CALLER: It's incredible. Really helped me out. I actually had to go into the hospital --
RUSH: No, no, your plan is substandard. No, no, no. You don't know. The president says your plan is substandard and worthless, because you're not buying contraception for Susie and Nate so they can get between the covers.
CALLER: Yeah, well, I don't need that stuff at all, I know --
RUSH: Too bad. You're gonna be paying for it. That's why you can't keep your plan, because your plan doesn't cover that stuff.
CALLER: Absolutely. By the way, I'm looking forward to buying your book here. I was listening to you talk about it so it's gonna be in my kids' Christmas stockings this year.
RUSH: Oh, cool. Cool. Here, I tell you what, let me make you a deal. Stay on hold. How old are your kids?
CALLER: My son is 14 and my daughter's 12.
RUSH: Okay. I want to send you the audio version, so if you're gonna go out and buy the book --
RUSH: Yeah. If you'll hang on, I'll get your address --
CALLER: That's cool.
RUSH: -- and Snerdley will send that out. Well, somebody will. Snerdley doesn't send things. It's beneath him now, but somebody will, and that will accompany the book that you're gonna buy. I can't thank you enough. But that's cool. Here you go, folks. See, I mentioned this in the previous hour. The people that are losing their plans now are individual policies, people that are not getting their health insurance as an employee benefit. They're actually buying it themselves. They're the ones losing their plans right now, but starting next year, employer provided plans go through the same thing. That's where people start losing theirs because the company is going to have to change the plan in order to stay in compliance with Obamacare.
One of the things that the plan is gonna have to do is provide birth control pills. Obamacare guarantees contraception. So the insurance companies have to sell it, the buyer has to buy it, in our so-called Obama free market, so that Millennials can have inconsequential sex and vote for Obama and thank him for it. And that constitutes change, and when your policy changes then you lose the grandfather status and your plan's gone. Bye-bye. This, by the way, is why the employer mandate was delayed, so that this would not happen at the same time as the individuals were losing theirs, you see.
Yes, ladies and gentlemen. It is an intricately woven web of deceit, and everybody that's asking out of this knew what was going to happen.
RUSH: Mike in Washington, Indiana. Hi. Glad you called, sir. It's great to have you here.
CALLER: Thank you, Rush. Long-time listener, first-time caller. I own an insurance agency in Indiana, and I thought I had some input that might assist. One of the problems with Obamacare that no one has looked at yet, is this is an HMO product. It's a health maintenance organization where they're going to assign me a doctor in a hospital -- maybe in my community, perhaps not. The issue with that is that as I'm approaching 60 years of age, my concern is this: You know, as I'm paying into Social Security and into Medicare, I understand the government's insurable interest in keeping me alive. But at that point where I'm no longer able to function, they lose an insurable interest and I'm concerned about my health care being rationed.
RUSH: Oh, well, you are entirely correct in assuming and worried and concerned that your health care is gonna be rationed and it is, and the rationing is gonna start very soon.
CALLER: The other thought I have to help your listeners is what I'm going to do. I've lost my health insurance effective January 1. My doctor's retiring January 1, so the only solution that I can come to after 35 years in the insurance business is that I want to purchase a short-term health policy that will grant me coverage for six months time. Now, it will not cover preexisting conditions, but it will insure me for conditions I don't currently have or an auto accident. For the young listeners --
RUSH: You have to renew it every six months, is that what you would do?
CALLER: Well, you can pay it monthly or every six months. You can renew it one time. Your listeners can simply go to various insurance carriers and shop for their own plans.
RUSH: So basically, you're going to self-insure?
CALLER: Exactly. I'm going to self-insure. My premium is gonna drop from $21,000 a year to approximately $5,000 and I'll use my premium savings to pay those other out-of-pocket expenses.
RUSH: Now, wait. Why is your premium gonna drop from 21 grand to five?
CALLER: Well, I'm currently under the Indiana Comprehensive Health Plan. That is the pool in Indiana that is being discontinued, effective 1/1, due to Obamacare.
RUSH: Okay. But you gotta go by something that's replacing that, and you say you're gonna buy a short-term, six-month policy.
CALLER: It is, and the short-term policy for my wife and I is approximately $400 a month. It won't cover preex[isting conditions], but I can't go to the Obama site because it's not secure and I can't risk having my identity stolen even if it is an HMO product. Your young listeners don't need to go to the Obamacare website. They just simply need to go buy short-term insurance.
RUSH: Well, I tried to talk about this yesterday, but it's such a foreign concept. Of course people can buy their own insurance. You can buy a replacement policy. It depends on what price you can find for it. But most people are not conditioned that way. It's sad. (interruption) Yeah, yeah, I know you have to shop and then you have to write the check, and that's what people don't like. When it's health care, you have to pay for the policy.
Now, most people are used to paying co-pays, and dealing with deductibles. But they think somebody else is paying the freight on the policy. (interruption) Yes, I do understand. (interruption) Oh, Snerdley is saying I don't understand because he says that the average American, particularly the low-information American won't know where to go to shop for the plans. Where is the insurance company? Where do you go to do this? (interruption) Okay, fine. Maybe that's true.
Even if they know that, my point is, it's not something they think they should have to do. Everybody's been conditioned that health care is given to you, provided for you. You pay a little. You pay your copay and you've got a deductible. But you do not write a check for your policy. The boss does. The people who have individual policies do this, but they are the minority. So his solution is self-insure. Can you imagine if we had hotel insurance and people never had to pay for their hotel rooms? They had to pay for the incidentals, but their insurance paid for the hotel room?
But if they raided the mini-bar they'd have to pay for that, maybe a deductible. And imagine for 30 years people never had to buy a hotel room and all of a sudden that gets canceled and they now gotta buy the room, can you imagine the culture shock? Well, that's where we are with this. But this has been since World War II that people have not been buying health care. It's been given to them,
In this guy's case, even if it goes from 21 grand to five, that's still five they're not used to, in their minds, paying. They are paying it, they just don't think so. It's the same thing. If they canceled deduction and withholding on federal taxes and every three months people had to right the check, you'd have to revolt because then people would find out what it actually costs, what money they're losing that they never see because of deduction. And the Democrats, I think, have been very crafty creating this whole notion that health care is a benefit. What's a benefit? Even to hear Obama talking about, urging people (imitating Obama), "Wherever you go to get a new job, make sure you get your benefits defined."
Benefit, what the hell is a benefit? It's a freebie, people think.
Now, this guy's in the insurance business so he knows where to go. He's still paying $5,000, I didn't ask him, for six months or a year, but you always will pay less if you don't use an insurance company. Go to the hospital. Try this sometime. No, don't try it, 'cause I don't want you to get sick. But offer to pay the bill with your credit card instead of your insurance and look at the price difference. You'd be amazed how much less it costs. It might still be expensive. I'm not saying it's not expensive. But you'll be amazed how much less it costs, if you pay for it yourself. Because the hospitals don't have to worry about the paperwork and the minutia and the bureaucracy and all that crap that takes up everybody's day.
You pay for it, it's over with. You leave the hospital, and you come back when you gonna get the mistake that the doctor made fixed. Just kidding. Couldn't help myself. I'm worn out, folks. No excuse. Just kidding about the mistake the doctors make. But you walk out, after you pay for it, it's over with. You're not gonna have somebody come repossess your house. You're not gonna have an insurance company breathing down your back and raise your premium or anything. You just pay for it and leave. And they're through with it, too. 'Til you get sick the next time. And when you're paying for it yourself, it's amazing how much healthier you remain, guaranteed.