Monday, May 9, 2011

I Totally Just Fixed Medicare. Winning!

"Why should the federal government save money on the backs of seniors at the same time that they are giving tax breaks to millionaires, giving subsidies to Big Oil, and tax cuts to companies that send jobs overseas?" ~Nancy Pelosi, speaking to seniors in Orlando, FL, April 20, 2011.

Problem solved! Thanks, me.

Nancy Pelosi and other Democrats in Congress are flagging down every man, woman, and child with a video camera for the chance to warn America that left to the Republicans, all seniors will STARVE and DIE. STARVE and DIE. Well...unless they eat cat food.
Really, Nancy? Really???

Okay, first I'd like to point out that the Paul Ryan / Republican budget plan DOES NOT change Medicare funding for current recipients, nor for any who qualify FOR THE NEXT TEN YEARS. The ONLY cuts in the Ryan plan are the ones the DEMOCRATS already outlined in Obamacare.
But still... Republicans want to kill seniors. Really? Has anyone noticed the average age of Republicans in Congress?? Pretty sure they're not into killing seniors. Just sayin'.

Here's the thing. The average net worth of members of the US House in 2009 was about $4,000,000.  The average net worth of members of the US Senate in 2009 was almost $14,000,000. Democrats play the role of representing the "little man" while painting a picture of greedy Republicans as only looking out for their own... the wealthy, greedy, Wall-Street CEOs and banker types. But here's the thing. 7 of the 10 wealthiest members of Congress are NOT Republicans. They're Democrats. Huh...weird.
Here's a sampling of some 2010 net worth numbers, though these aren't all necessarily in the top 10:

Dianne Feinstein (D-Cali): $108,100,000.00
John Kerry (D-Mass): $294,900,000.00
Darrell Issa (R-Cali): $451,100,000.00
Mark Warner (D-VA): $283,100,000.00
Nancy Pelosi (D-CA): $58,000,000.00

And so on and so on and so on, but frankly, the more names & numbers I give you, the sicker I become.  

55 out of 261 members of Congress have an average wealth of $10 million or more. Of those 55, 8 have an average wealth of $100 million or more.

Now, about that health insurance the Republicans want to strip from seniors.....
Members of Congress have the option of choosing from more than 10 different plans and providers; one of the more popular ones being a Blue Cross Blue Shield plan that costs $1,120.47 per month.  To their credit, members do pay a portion of their monthly premium. Up to 25% of it, to be precise. The remaining 72-75% of it however, is paid for by the government a la American taxpayer (a.k.a. YOU. ME.) dollars. Hey, guess who pays taxes that help fund Congress health insurance plans......  Seniors. The same Seniors for whom the Dems show soooooo much concern and distress. Awesome.

In contrast to the plush Congress plans, Medicare is Medicare. There is no option of choosing from more than 10 plans and providers. You get what you get. You take what they give you or you don't take Medicare.  And let me tell ya.... it ain't pretty.  What is covered under Medicare, when compared to what is covered under the "Cadillac" plans our federal representatives and employees enjoy, is peanuts. And not even delicious, honey-roasted peanuts. More like the blah blah unsalted peanuts you buy for a quarter to feed elephants at the zoo. As is the case in Congress plans, the government (a.k.a. our tax dollars) pays for 75% of the monthly premium and the remaining 25% is taken out of the recipient's monthly Social Security check.

So here's what I'm thinking. Virtually every Democrat member of Congress has said (repeatedly.... over. and over. and over. and ovvvver.) it's time the rich in this country start paying their "fair share" stop "sitting around, doing nothing" as President Obama put it in a recent speech. Well, Misters and Missuses Congresspeeps, bring it. Put your money where your mouth is.  Based on the net worth of virtually every one of you, YOU ARE the "rich" to whom you refer. Clearly, you can all afford to pay for your own health insurance. And since you care so much for the seniors of America who will soon be living off of cat food if they're in fact still living at all and haven't starved to death, surely you're all willing (if not ecstatic) to re-allocate the tax dollars that pay for your health insurance to Medicare instead. Especially given that a month's premium for one of your plans would pay a month's premium for two, three, maybe even four Medicare recipients.  

Remember when President Obama said we'd all have to make sacrifices?  What better sacrifice than one that isn't really even a sacrifice to begin with?  If it's time for the wealthy to step up and pay their fair share, who better to lead by example than the ones who are telling the wealthy to step up in the first place?

Old people eating cat food...... Losing. Congress actually practicing what they preach for once....... Winning! (Sorry...I'm really starting to miss Charlie Sheen's nuggets of gold.)
So c'mon. Whatdaya say? Step up? Fair share? Everybody in? Awesome.

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