If you have a serious illness these days, $8,000 dollars gets you in the door of a good horpital, but doesn’t cover much else. But this is what GOP House Budget Czar Rep. Paul Ryan is proposing — that seniors over 65 get a ‘coupon’ worth $8K total instead of Medicare and give themselves over to the untender mercies of the ravenous health care insurers. Gee, what a bleeding-heart compassionate conservative this goofball ‘Profile in Courage’ is. It’s a GOP horror movie, “Die, Grandma, Die!” Former Rep. Alan Grayson had it right: “If you get sick, America, the Republican health care plan is this: Die quickly.” Ryan was correct about one thing: his ‘Help the Wealthy’ scam is definitely not a budget.
By Robert Parry
In These Times
April 12, 2011
The consequences of three decades of anti-government Reaganism and free-market extremism are now coming clearly into view, a cruel and brutish America split sharply between a few lucky haves and many desperate have-nots.
As Rep. Paul Ryan proudly declared in unveiling the Republican budget plan for fiscal 2012, “This is not a budget; this is a cause.”
It is the “cause” advanced in the modern era by President Ronald Reagan and economist Milton Friedman. It calls for further slashing the tax rate for the richest Americans by another ten percentage points, from 35 percent to 25 percent, while enacting a wide range of domestic spending cuts, including phasing out the Medicare health program for the elderly as it has existed since the 1960s.
Under Ryan’s plan, senior citizens in the future would have to select a private health insurance policy with the government paying “premium support” worth about $8,000 to the company, thus shifting a heavier, even crushing, financial burden onto the elderly.
And, since Ryan’s plan also would repeal President Barack Obama’s health reform, which prohibits insurance companies from excluding coverage of “preexisting conditions,” senior citizens suffering from chronic illnesses might find themselves unable to get coverage of those ailments and likely consigned to a premature death.
Read the rest here.