Wednesday, September 25, 2013

You Do Not Like Obamacare? You Do Not Like It, So You Say? Have You Tried It, Mr. Cruz? Try It, Try It, and You May!

Dear Senator Cruz,
Before citing children's literature in your fili-bluster against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), perhaps you should have done your homework on the authors of the books mentioned.

The Little Engine That Could was penned, under a pseudonym, by Mabel Caroline Bragg -- an expert in health and physical education. She was a champion of early preventative health measures for children, and of creative, varied physical activity integrated into school curriculum (kind of like our First Lady, no?)

Green Eggs and Ham -- really? Theodor Geisel, aka Dr. Seuss, was of our country's most progressive political cartoonists, ever. His children's books openly promoted environmentalism, cooperation, integration, a community's responsibility for its neediest members, and experimentation.

And, while you're at it, you should totally read the ACAI know you have the best medical coverage in the country, but could you please peruse the entire law? (That would have been a great use of your time last night!) Here, too, is a handy explanation of the law and its timeline, with lots of colorful graphics (more like a picture book, if that's your preference).

Then, ask all your friends and constituents with grown kids how many of their children have stayed on their insurance (statistically, more Republicans have than Democrats). How many of those kids have avoided thousands of dollars of medical costs from accidents, surgeries, routine care, root canals? How many of your friends/family/constituents with preexisting conditions can now get insurance? (My husband was kicked off his for back injuries; we are thousands of dollars in debt for it, after paying Blue Cross $600/mo. for a single policy.) 

Price the exchanges (start in your Lonestar State! Lookin' good!). Ask your colleagues in states without affordable insurance for children, whose constituents' kids have gone without check-ups and dental care, the difference this law will make. Learn about new incentives and programs for preventative care that will save the U.S. millions in emergency room visits. And look at that cost -- how much $$ is wasted in ERs because people don't have an affordable option for routine care, no insurance due to a preexisting condition -- MS, Parkinson's, Diabetes, asthma, cancer? Ask anyone who's had to fight their insurance company while themselves terminally ill, or caring for a newborn (all those hours on the phone with United when getting two hours of sleep a night!) or so their loved one could get life-saving treatment, what difference the ACA will make. Or could have made

Please let this be your bedtime reading tonight. And perhaps consult with the researchers and physicians at Dartmouth Medical School, otherwise known as:

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

The Rapacious Creditor

If addiction was personified, I'm pretty sure it would look like this:

Breaking Bad's Uncle Jack and his grizzled pals perfectly symbolize the disease (in any form "the disease of more" takes): full-throttle, indiscriminately violent, heavily armed, wildly greedy. Anyone whose known, lived with, loved or been themselves someone in the death grip of addiction understands how it will excavate everything of value from a life, throw the bodies in the pit afterward, then kick back with a bowl of Ben & Jerry's to watch a hilarious confession tape robbed from the house of a murdered DEA agent, said confessor currently chained to a dog run out back, forced to cook meth between beatings. Just a typical Tuesday.

(Oh, spoiler alert. See? Addiction doesn't give a crap if it wrecks your plan to watch all of season 5 when it comes out on Netflix.)
Header Image from Bangbouh @ Flickr