Politics Trumps Both Compassion and Common Sense

Apparently, common sense is fairly uncommon, and compassion is just a word in the dictionary.

The Dallas News recently reported that Texas’ refusal to expand Medicaid and participate in the Affordable Care Act (aka “Obamacare”) will cause individual health insurance premiums to rise a whopping 9.3%.

The Texas Observer reports that Texas will not only leave 100 billion dollars “on the table,” but the decision will cause a raise in local property taxes. (The burden of emergency medical care generally falls on property taxpayers in Texas–just as it does in Indiana. When people take Mike Pence’s advice and get their “access to care” through the Emergency Room, property taxpayers pay for that unnecessarily-expensive care. )

Fiscal stupidity is one thing. Essentially telling poor people to f**k off is another.

Nearly 7 million adults ages 19 to 64 would qualify for Medicaid in the 25 states that have not voted to expand it, according to an Urban Institute report. Those 7 million people won’t get Medicaid and they won’t get federal help to buy health insurance.

The refusal to expand Medicaid won’t “defund” the Affordable Care Act, or change any of its provisions. The only “message” it will send to Washington is “we’ll show you–we’ll hurt ourselves!”

The bottom line: Rick Perry, Mike Pence and other Republican governors care more about obstructing Obama than about the health of their economies or their citizens.

That’s politics these days. And it’s not only stupid, it’s despicable.


  1. The states that went “hard right” last time, are paying the price now. Wis, IN, Texas…. so many people NOT being helped. Dumb Dumb Dumb. I sure hope they see the link from their “Tea Party” leaders to their family, friends and neighbors not getting medical coverage…not getting much needed health care. MANY will have to die for this stupidity. How very very sad this is. All because these Tea Party idiots hate the scary black man.

  2. I will take this opportunity to spout off here where more than my family and friends will either benefit from or ignore this information. There are many who need and deserve medical care assistance such as Medicaid; I am not referring to them. I have known and seen with my own baby blues those who cause tax payers in this city and state unknown amounts of tax dollars paying for other people’s medical care. These are the thousands of people with decent jobs; they usually have two vehicles, big screen TV’s, any and all systems to show movies and play computer games, the children have all the newest electronic gadgets & games, they have cell phones that do everything but cleanse their behinds, they eat carry-out meals, order in pizzas, attend movies and concerts and enjoy life in general. When they or their child get sick, however minor the illness, they head for the nearest hospital emergency room for diagnosis and treatment. They usually don’t pay because they believe this is somehow owed to them and will be taken care of by “the system”. If you ask why they do not have a doctor or health care coverage the answer is always the same – “we can’t afford it”. Refer to my above listing to understand why they cannot afford it.

    If anyone knows a way to get those against the ACA (or Obamacare if you prefer) please get this message across to the staunch followers of GOP blathering, lies and repeated repeal attempts. It shames me to admit that years ago, a few of my own family members were guilty of the ER form of medical care. We are already paying medical care for these people and without ACA ruling that working people must purchase their own health care provider we will continue to pay skyrocketing costs for our own health care and medications as well as paying for our health care coverage. For those who believe Medicare is free and recipients are on the tax payers dole; we pay for that monthly plus needed supplementary health care and co-pays for physicians and treatment. I keep wondering if these Republican governors and other elected officials realize they are also harming the thousands of Republicans who will continue paying for the health care of others without ACA and Medicaid expansion. There are none so blind as those who will not see – and none so deaf as those who will not hear.

  3. @Joann Green I normally really love your posts and I think I usually agree with you, but I am going to challenge you on what you think you are seeing with your baby blues eyes. I work with the homeless, disabled, and those living in poverty, but my dark brown eyes see a very different perspective, and my perspective is based on what I see in reality. I have actually sat down with many people in poverty and tried to help them work out a budget. Just last week, a disabled man with severe Crohn’s told me that he was hoping to get his food stamps increased. His food stamps were increased by $1 a month, up to $32 a month. He is the norm for food stamps in Indiana for single adult. Unfortunately he requires a very special diet, and soup kitchens/food pantries are typically the wrong foods for him to complicate matters. He is what our focus should be on helping.

    Posts like yours make me angry because I believe you are seeing bits and pieces of a skewed reality blown out of proportion. It is like child abductions and airplane crashes that receive so much attention so that it seems like it is happening to everyone, but they are actually rare events. I have no doubt that you could find plenty of true examples to back your claims, but even in those cases, the truth is often a much muddier picture.

    Take for example the phones, we actually do give out donated cell phones to homeless people, because phones are a lifeline to benefits, job contacts, and family. We will take whatever phones are donated. Everything is by phone (or social media) and when one is living a mobile existence, cell phones are survival.

    As for poor people having the latest, greatest phones, some foolishly do go out and spend all their money on a phone, many poor people are drawn to superficial showy flashy items. They feel like they have nothing, but they don’t want to seem like they have nothing. Many people in poverty put on a very big show and focus on the superficial. I actually have met several people in poverty that have iphones or look like they have iphones, but no service plans with them. All the iphones actually do for them is operate as a phone, and they use the pay as you go cards to get minutes. You might be surprised by how common that is. You might be surprised by the deals that people can find on phones that look like iphones because iphones are a status symbol. Clayton Christensen is getting negative press right now for wrongly predicting that the cheap iphones would fail because he thought that people would select the low end rivals that actually are a better value, but iphones are a status symbols and status symbols are important.

    I obviously could write a book on this subject and I am not doing this subject justice, but I just want to make the point that sometimes those that put on the biggest show of what they appear to have are really putting on the biggest show. Truth is messy. (I also really do love most of your posts, so I feel kind of bad for disagreeing with you a little bit, and I do think in general we do agree.)

  4. Gayl Killough; I specifically stated I was NOT referring to anyone who needs and deserves public assistance in any form. I am talking about people who can easily afford to pay for health care but refuse to because they prefer spending their money on entertainment and/or appearances. I worked with Community Services Division which was part of the Mayor’s Office; we monitored federal funds going into all multi-service, senior and health centers in Marion County till Reagan cut funds. I worked with the service center directors writing annual proposals for this funding, I monitored their physical facilities and their records and spent much time in these centers watching staff members deal with their clients. They were all amazing people; people like yourself who genuinely cared about anyone and everyone in need. How on earth does this government expect anyone to feed themselves on $32 monthly in food stamps? One counselor at Near Eastside (now John Bonner Center) took abused women and children into her home because at that time we didn’t have facilities to house them. I know the difference between people who need and deserve assistance and selfishness and greed. Need doesn’t change with time; so the needs I saw served years ago are the same needs that today are faced by many more Americans due to the greed, avarice and racism – yes, there is that word racism again – evidenced by the GOP, Tea Party and NRA. I thank you for being one who cares and puts her heart and soul into helping others and I am sure you would recognize the difference between someone in need and someone using the sytem for anything free that is available.

    Rep. Julia Carson grew up in a single-parent home and in poverty. She remembers how she was treated with disdain in her local Township Assistance Office as a child seeking food for herself and her aiiing mother. When she later became Township Trustee she and her staff would visit homes on their own time; looking for and weeding out those who had income but were using the sytem. They were charged legally and made to repay for what they had received. This is the way the system should work.

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