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2019-11-07 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Editorial , 333 references Ignore this thread
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2020 year, 64 year old married couple in Wyoming with $68,000 a year in income (thus no subsidy.)

Of course in one more year both qualify for Medicare.

Now the current environment makes the "penalty" for not having ACA insurance zero.  But even if it wasn't zero, it would be for this couple, since that price is well beyond the limit of MAGI that allows you to say "no" and not get penalized.

Thus it comes into stark relief what I said back when Obamacare was proposed and passed, and which many people "poo pooed" at the time.

You have the following choices:

1. Intentionally stop producing so as to drop your income for a single person to around $22,000 a year (married couples are higher.)  This results in the maximum subsidy so you can obtain "coverage" at zero, or near-zero cost.  **** THE ECONOMY, **** PAYING TAXES, **** PROGRESS, **** BEING PRODUCTIVE.

2. If you qualify for an exemption and are healthy, or, since the tax changes made the penalty zero, give the finger to the system and buy nothing.

3. If you need medical care and especially if you need ongoing medical intervention then your only sane option is to choose to die rather than deal with this extortionate garbage, which is designed to and will bankrupt you.

3a. If you believe you will be punished for a retributive strike before you die, then die quietly.

3b. If you either don't believe in an afterlife or just don't give a flying **** if you're punished in it for said retributive strike then go hunting before you die and do so in a form and fashion that makes clear who you're doing and why you're doing them -- whether you choose to aim at the medical or political establishments.

Note that 3b is, of course, extremely illegal and thus I could not recommend such a course of action.  But there are millions of Americans who are in this exact box; they are faced with ruinously expensive "insurance" that they cannot pay for with deductibles and exclusions that make it worthless until they're bankrupted anyway.

What is for many people even worse is that in non-Medicaid expansion states if you make too little you also don't qualify for subsidies.  Young adults are frequently in this position.  They were also exempt from the now-zero penalty because the cost was too high relative to income, but this meant they had -- and have today -- no means to obtain coverage they can afford at all.  And God help you if you are anywhere near that lower-end cut-off and have any sort of instability with your income because if you sign up, take the subsidy and then lose your job partway through the year and thus your full-year income is below the lower boundary cut-off you're utterly rat****ed as when tax time comes you'll have to repay all of that subsidy at once, amounting to thousands of dollars and, of course, being in a lower income bracket and having lost your job you won't have it.

This is why I said your only realistic option was get rid of the extra body mass, stop eating carbs, do what you can to not need the medical system at all and tell them to go **** goats because you refuse to patronize them -- and when someone who works in that field wants something you produce, charge them 500% as much as you charge everyone else.

Most people either didn't or couldn't take that advice.  They either chose to keep the extra 100lbs, 30 points on their blood pressure and five points on their A1c, or were already screwed badly enough metabolically that there was nothing that could be done about it.  Oh well.

We as a body politic refused to demand that Trump keep his ****ing promise to break the medical monopolies -- all of them -- which would drop the cost of care by 80% and make this "insurance" both unnecessary and the care directly affordable.

Instead we did and still do scream "MAGA", "KAGA" or whatever it is today because, well, we wouldn't get off our fat asses when Black Jesus was President with his magic pen and phone either and we sure as hell won't do it today!

We let our State Attorneys General sit on their asses, our state and local cops sit on theirs, and our federal AG and FBI sit on theirs despite all of this pricing behavior being illegal for more than 100 years -- and not civilly illegal either, felony criminally illegal.

Oh well.

One percent of Americans amount to 3 million people.  That's three times the maximum crowd that has ever descended on the National Mall and Washington DC to demand something.  If that one percent had showed up when Obamacare was first debated, demanded that instead all the monopolists go to prison, and refused to leave until it happened, shutting Washington DC down entirely there wouldn't be a problem like this today.  Medical care would cost one fifth of what it costs right now.  I've had a plan out to do exactly that for years.

If one percent of Americans had done so the day after Trump's election, when he intentionally pulled all three of his campaign promises to do exactly that off his web site, never to be seen again, and likewise refused to leave until it happened there wouldn't be a problem like this today, and all the strum and furor about "repealing" the ACA, which we now know what a total load of bull**** from the entire Republican caucus that in fact loves ass-ramming you on a daily basis, would have not occurred and that time could have been spent on something productive.  But even now, three years in, when Trump has demonstrated that he doesn't give a wet crap if you go bankrupt or die at the hands of these criminals, fully half the nation still supports him.

Nor have the people done so, laying siege, to any of the state capitols -- but they could have.

One guy waving a sign and writing columns does nothing.  100 dudes waving signs do nothing either.  I remind you that in 2008 when the US Government ****ed everyone in this nation to bail out a bunch of banksters I, Stef and Randy Jasky and a handful of others organized a demonstration in DC.  We drew under a hundred people and, of course, were ignored.

Three million Americans deciding that this crap will stop right now or Washington DC will stop until it does would be a different matter.  If it was 3% of Americans instead of 1% that would be ten million people -- an utterly impossible to disperse crowd as that is many multiples of the number of police in the United States and if the cops or politicians decided that a peaceful shutdown of everything in DC wasn't going to be "allowed" their decision to use violence would prove to be the biggest mistake ever made in the history of American politics.

But.... nope.

You'd rather argue over Orange Man Bad or Orange Man Good.

You'd rather argue over all manner of petty bull**** instead of this, which underpins the entire Federal deficit, the entire monetary shenanigan game in the US and more.

You'd rather bitch about stupid things like which bathroom someone should go******in even though the math on this has been clear for the last 30 years, the trajectory was clear then, it has stayed the same since and within the next five years it will blow up the federal and state budgets.

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