The hospital news is good, but the
recreation news is bad.
The 1930s offer a parallel for today.
The Miss-Lou’s breaking news:
Natchez Humane Society saves animals through
New CVB director is
Natchez Bluff Blues
The Advice Goddess:
He just won’t listen and an argument
Terry Savage on money:
Trust but verify when it comes to your financial
McAllister on health:
Here are some tips on how to pick a
Thomas Sowell thinking clearly:
The Democratic Party can no longer help black voters.
Let’s adopt the “Stossel
Tourists and pilgrims welcome:
Spring weather is really here. It’s
time to visit Natchez and Vidalia.
Win cash or prizes!
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More good writing:
Peter Rinaldi writes another edition
of The Rinaldi Report on
Health insurance not the real issue
by Charlie Mitchell
playing baseball breaks his leg. Mom needs a pacemaker. Dad has had a stroke
and is on his way to the emergency room.
the most conservative of conservatives won’t say these people must have
money or insurance — or be turned away at the hospital door. A few may
differ, but most accept the premise that in America, a gathering of humanity
that has been richly blessed, people’s medical needs should be met.
So what’s the
problem in Mississippi? Why have the Legislature and the governor fought
Obamacare tooth and toenail?
The answer is that
it’s not about insurance.
It’s about a
duality, real or perceived, that America is being wrecked by a rising number
of “takers” and shrinking number of “givers.”
extends to all aid programs, even where ill-founded. (The Affordable Care
Act isn’t another handout to those who are poor, aged or both. The poor have
Medicaid; the aged have Medicare and the poor and aged have Medicaid and
As Chief Justice
John Roberts pointed out, Obamacare is a tax — a new tax, a big tax.
A Kaiser Family
Foundation online calculator is available to anyone — free (kff.org). Enter
the info for a family of four (two 35-year-olds and two children) living in
Jackson with a household income of $50,000, and the result is this: An
average health policy would cost $14,283 per year less a $10,918 tax credit
for a net of $3,365 or $280.42 per month.
this prototypical family had no insurance, $280.42 per month is a lot more
than they were paying: 6.7 cents more in taxation plucked from every earned
dollar. But on the other hand, it puts them in the pool, no longer facing
bankruptcy for a child’s broken leg or having others, the previously
insured, pick up the cost of their uncompensated care.
Obamacare nice, clean legislation? Heck no. It’s a mess that is (1)
underfunded and (2) filled with carve-outs for special interests. It’s a
super-duper three-ring mess.
Former Gov. Haley
Barbour said so. So did (and does) Commissioner of Insurance Mike Chaney.
But what those two Republicans concluded is that Congress (and the Supreme
Court) dealt the cards and that Mississippi should play the hand in the
least painful way possible.
said Gov. Phil Bryant, insisting the state would be bankrupted. No, said the
Republicans who control the House and Senate. Do they have a better plan?
Well, the answer is “no” there, too.
The confusion (and
deception) that has been part of this conversation may be unprecedented.
Last week, when the
deadline (that is not a deadline) for the uninsured to buy a policy (which
might cost too much and might be free) passed, President Obama declared
victory based on internal numbers showing 7 million enrolled.
pushing for universal coverage, it was routinely reported that 15 million or
40 million or 44 million or 48 million did not have policies. Since when is
signing up fewer than one-half (or one-eighth) a win? (The most reliable
stats are probably from the U.S. Bureau of the Census, which was reporting a
steady annual decline in uninsured citizens before the Affordable Care Act
was enacted, most recently to 15.4 percent of the population in 2012.)
numbers? Forbes says half the people in Mississippi “required” to sign up
did so. Good old Fox News says only 1.7 percent of the previously uninsured
have enrolled and only a fraction have paid a premium.
The president has said,
although not very often, that the end game is a single-payer system copied
and refined from those used in Canada, some of Asia and almost all of
Europe. At its core, the purpose of the law is in keeping with the history
of civilization. Sharing risks and rewards is what societies do.
The hang-up is this
deep-seated tension, this firm belief that too many game the system to
obtain everything from cell phones to diapers to the food on their table and
the roofs over their heads. Obamacare is seen as just another step on the
road to having good, working people support lazy, shiftless people.
That’s a shame.
path toward the whole nation sharing the whole cost of health services would
have been perilous enough. It has been made tougher by
the notion that everything would be OK if all the freeloaders would just get