Posts Tagged ‘hole

28
Nov
11

afternoon all

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Charles P. Pierce (Esquire): Why Does Everybody Hate Mitt? …. I’ve cast my memory back as far as I can, and I cannot recall a major politician of either party who causes so many members of his party to spit (metaphorically, one hopes) at the simple mention of his name. And this is not a recent phenomenon. One of the few insights worthy of anyone’s time in that horrible Game Change book was the fact that, by the end of the 2008 presidential cycle, all of the other Republican candidates had come to despise Willard. (John McCain was apoplectic on the subject, even by McCain’s standards, which are considerable.) This now has seemed to transfer itself to the Republican electorate in general. Nobody likes this guy…..

On the surface, this elemental loathing seems disproportionate, even if you take into account how much of the GOP’s Jesus-jammin’ base distrusts the extended coven into which Romney was born …. Willard is something of a foof who spends all his time falling a few yards short of sincerity. He speaks a form of trust-fund English that can be off-putting. He is as utterly unprincipled as a politician can be, and he’s about as trustworthy as a puff adder… all Romney’s done is change his position on a whole host of issues, and talk like the guy who’s come to repossess the family farm…..

More here

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President Obama, flanked by European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso and European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, in the Roosevelt Room, Nov 28

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WH: Over the weekend, a report by the Associated Press detailed how the Affordable Care Act is dramatically reducing drug costs for seniors who hit the prescription drug coverage gap known as the donut hole. This year, seniors are benefiting from a 50 percent discount on brand-name drugs in the donut hole. And the discount and other provisions in the law are saving money for seniors. As the AP reported:

The average beneficiary who falls into the coverage gap would have spent $1,504 this year on prescriptions. But thanks to discounts and other provisions in President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul law, that cost fell to $901…

…. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, seniors will receive bigger discounts in the years ahead. By 2020, the donut hole will be closed completely.

And even if you don’t hit the donut hole, there’s still good news for beneficiaries with Medicare Part D. Prescription drug premiums will not rise next year, and thanks to health reform, seniors can get preventive services like mammograms and other cancer screenings for free.

More here

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Caught ya M4O!

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15
Sep
11

‘gosh, could obamacare be working?’

Jonathan Cohn (TNR): Republicans made a lot of arguments against the Affordable Care Act. But perhaps none were as effective, or as seemingly plausible, as their contention that their new law would cripple Medicare Advantage.

New evidence suggests – surprise! – that the argument was wrong.

…. The policy rationale for Medicare Advantage is two-fold: To give seniors more options and to introduce some private-sector competition. The idea is that private insurers might be able to be more innovative or offer certain combinations of services that some seniors would prefer. But, for much of its history, the program (formerly known as Medicare-plus-choice) was also a form of corporate welfare. Non-partisan studies, by the likes of the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission, suggested that the government was paying the insurers too much.

The architects of the Affordable Care Act decided, quite sensibly, to reduce those extra subsidies and use the money to offset part of the law’s cost. That’s when the Republicans, and their allies, pounced. Taking money away from the insurers, they claimed, would force insurers to charge more, limit their offerings, or pull out of the market altogether.

…. new information, just released from the administration, suggests those predictions haven’t come true.

On the contrary, the Department of Health and Human Services announced on Thursday that premiums for the plans are down and enrollment is up, well above the official projections……

More here

Thank you ‘africa’

31
Dec
10

‘major health care reforms take effect january 1’

TPM: Starting Saturday, two of the new health care law’s most significant reforms take effect – or at least begin to take effect.

The first will dramatically clamp down on insurance industry waste, abuse, and excesses. Starting on New Year’s Day, insurance companies will have to spend at least 80 percent of the revenues they receive from premiums on actual health care. Not on salaries or overhead…..

..…The other is much more visible. Senior citizens – a demographic that’s skeptical of the bill – will see real benefits. In 2011, the law will begin to close the Medicare Part D coverage gap – the infamous “donut hole.” Seniors who reach the donut hole will now receive a 50 percent discount on brand-name drugs, the first step in a 10 year plan to fill the hole completely. Seniors will also now receive free annual checkups, screenings and other preventive care.

Other changes will also kick in … but these are the biggies. Add them to other reforms that have already taken effect – such as a ban on discriminating against children with pre-existing conditions, and the new right parents have of keeping their children on their family insurance plans until they’re 26 years old – and you’re talking about a bunch of stuff that would be very unpopular to repeal.

15
Aug
10

hole in one!

President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama react as their daughter Sasha gets a hole-in-one on the first hole as they play minature golf at Pirate’s Island Golf in Panama City Beach, Fla, Saturday, Aug. 14

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23
Nov
09

soleless

Senator Obama was doing press interviews by telephone in a holding room between events. Sometime later as he was getting ready to begin his event, he asked me if I was photographing his shoes. When I said yes, he told me that he had already had them resoled once since he entered the race a year earlier. Providence, R.I., 3/1/2008. Callie Shell.




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