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Blame it on the poor Park Ranger for the shutdown

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    johnnycee Wrote: My calculations were off some what, it seems my gorilla fingers didn't do the math right, it turns out the rate went up by $450.. not $4500.00. but still my wife and I are on fixed incomes so $450 dollars is still a loss in our standard of living.
    I was going to comment on your $4,500 cost increase but I see you have corrected the amount. In any case it appears to me that you and your wife are on Medicare and have a Medicare Supplemental policy? Correct? Those Medicare supplemental policies are being advertized regularly on TV. They cover the 15 percent of Part B that Medicare doesn't cover. Your Medicare Part B premium is most likely 104.90 a month unless your income is much higher than mine. It also has a $147 per year deductible. Medicare Part A cost is zero...you paid for that during your working career.

    The Keystone 65 supplemental policy that you have has several different options depending on how much coverage you want. I suspect it is similar to my AARP United Health Care policy. I have the AARP UHC high deductible Plan at a cost of $55 per month. It hasn't changed since I enrolled. This gives me coverage comparable to what I had with my employer.

    When I took early retirement my health insurance costs went up because my previous employer no longer paid the subsidy that they did for regular full time employees. When I turned 65 and went on Medicare my costs went down...mainly because the cost of medicare Part A was zero...I prepaid that over my lifetime of working.

    I see where many people are complaining about cost increases and attribute this to ObamaCare. If they are on Medicare the annual cost increases are very modest.

    I see where you previously stated that your Keystone 65 plan was being raised to $170.00 from $155.00. You probably have a higher level of coverage than me, but still the cost increase of $15/month works out to an increase of $180 per month. Double that to $360 if you are covering both of you.

    The final point I will make is that Medicare has nothing to do with ObamaCare. The cost of my AARP United Health Care supplemental policy likewise should not be affected much by ObamaCare, although ObamaCare does take away some of those profits and plows it back into Medicare Part D and Medicaid. My Supplemental policy at $55/month has a lot of unneeded perks like a free gym membership at 24 Hour Fitness. I would be happy to pay for that myself, and maybe that will be taken away. No complaints from me if they do.
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    Johnnycee,

    ObamaCare on this thread is off topic, but nevertheless since you interject your criticism of ObamaCare on just about every thread I'll indulge you.

    I looked up the Keystone 65 Supplemental policies.

    Keystone 65 HMO


    It looks to me like you have opted for the most expensive "Cadillac Plan" called Keystone 65 Preferred Rx HMO

    It covers just about everything. Coverage includes medical coverage including hearing, dental, and vision + prescription drug.. It just seems to me that paying an additional $175 per month to Keystone for all the rest of the 15 percent is a bit expensive. Most of my fellow retirees have all opted for the AARP UHC high deductible plan.

    Maybe you should do a consider a lower cost plan with higher deductibles.

    Again your decision to pay these higher costs has little or nothing to do with ObamaCare costs.
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    No, my wife does not have the Cadillac plan, trust me, and I won't join ARRP for reasons best not to air on this site, her plan does NOT have a hearing or a dental, or even a vision plan, and there is a deductible ,I believe it's $150 per year, my wife wanted the least pricy plan because of her low social security check, less than $700.00 a per month and that's before taxes and she is quite healthy, she has not been sick in decade's, her last hospital stay was for the birth of our youngest child, who will turn 40 this January. Thank God , I have a decent pension and a better than average social security plus some savings. Now if memory serves me right did not President Obama remove from Social Security hundreds of millions of dollars to initiate the funding for the Affordable Care Act, so I believe the higher cost's are being reflected in social security to compensate for those lost dollars, so Obama Care had and still does have an effect on social security .
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    johnnycee Wrote: Now if memory serves me right did not President Obama remove from Social Security hundreds of millions of dollars to initiate the funding for the Affordable Care Act, so I believe the higher cost's are being reflected in social security to compensate for those lost dollars, so Obama Care had and still does have an effect on social security .
    This is yet another false charge. Social Security and the ACA are two completely separate programs within the federal government. Please inform me of some actual facts regarding this accusation of yours.
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    johnnycee Wrote: No, my wife does not have the Cadillac plan, trust me, and I won't join ARRP for reasons best not to air on this site, her plan does NOT have a hearing or a dental, or even a vision plan, and there is a deductible ,I believe it's $150 per year, my wife wanted the least pricy plan because of her low social security check, less than $700.00 a per month and that's before taxes and she is quite healthy, she has not been sick in decade's, her last hospital stay was for the birth of our youngest child, who will turn 40 this January. Thank God , I have a decent pension and a better than average social security plus some savings. Now if memory serves me right did not President Obama remove from Social Security hundreds of millions of dollars to initiate the funding for the Affordable Care Act, so I believe the higher cost's are being reflected in social security to compensate for those lost dollars, so Obama Care had and still does have an effect on social security .
    Johnnycee --

    Okay I'm happy your wife doesn't have medical problems, but I'm calling you out then on the false statements you are making about the Keystone Plan that you claim ObbamaCare has increased your cost for the Medicare Supplement Plan by $450 per year. I've checked all the Keystone Plans in the above link and the only one that would come close to your claims is the most expensive plan offered for Philadelphia residents.

    The AARP assortment of plans with United Health Care are very similar to the Keystone plans. I could have chosen a more expensive plan and paid upwards of $160 per month but decided it wasn't in my economic best interests.

    So perhaps you want to correct your statements that your Keystone plan is costing you $175 per month.

    Now like your statements on ObamaCare, your statements on Social Security are entirely false. Just plain BS that you most like picked up listening to Fox News.

    Johnnycee, you are on a one man vendetta to attack President Obama on every one of his intiatitives. I'm sorry to be so harsh, but when you jump on new members with all the lies and misinformation I will call you out. I'm almost ready to ask the moderators to kick you off this website.
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    How can I prove my point when you refuse to see a different point of view, it is a well known fact even if you don't /refuse to acknowledge that when the healthcare bill was being discussed the initial funding was to come from social security, which it did to the tune of several hundred million dollars, and that we/I paid into for 4 years before it finally began to open for enrollment, where have you been . My wife's medical plan is called Keystone 65,HMO, so I don't know what number you called or what person you have been talking to over there but you have sure got some wrong info. My wife and I switched over from Independence Blue/Blue Cross as soon as my pension plan expired, I went with the plan F and my wife chose the HMO plan and she does pay for now $155. which will go up to $170, so don't try and tell me what I pay unless you want to pay the bill, by all means be my guest, so I don't know what you mean by calling me out ,what is this a school yard and your attempts to bully are silly, I just have a different take on the Affordable Care Act than you. I strive to listen to all sides of the story and then make my best informed decision for me and mine , I said I don't like Obama 's policies regarding a lot of things but it is not a vendetta against him, it's some of his policies that I disagree with, this is still the United States of America and one of our greatest privileges is to be able to as you say "call out" our politicians ,and yes even the President , when we disagree with his policies, but to go running to the teacher/principal/ moderator to kick someone out because you disagree with their different point of view is pretty juvenile. I have often said that the Medical Care Industry in this country needs much needed reform, so when it was first proposed I was all for it, even back when the First Lady H. Clinton proposed it, but then the policy wonks went to work and they really screwed up a real good idea into a party perk platform, so you see it's not , President Obama's fault that the party wonks screwed up his plan, his problem was that he continues to allow them to screw it up further by thumbing their nose's at the electorate by granting subsidies and exemptions to certain supporters, and there is no way could you say that was done fairly and to say that it's the law is just being disingenuous because a law is for everyone not just for some but for all, and this law does apply to everyone. Now that is what a interested and engaged voter says and does, not a Democrat nor a Republican, but an independent thinking person who is not into any ideologue put out by our politicians. I call myself by my actions a moderate Democrat. If you can't handle that, then cease responding to my posts .
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    johnnycee Wrote: How can I prove my point when you refuse to see a different point of view, it is a well known fact even if you don't /refuse to acknowledge that when the healthcare bill was being discussed the initial funding was to come from social security, which it did to the tune of several hundred million dollars, and that we/I paid into for 4 years before it finally began to open for enrollment, where have you been . My wife's medical plan is called Keystone 65,HMO, so I don't know what number you called or what person you have been talking to over there but you have sure got some wrong info. My wife and I switched over from Independence Blue/Blue Cross as soon as my pension plan expired, I went with the plan F and my wife chose the HMO plan and she does pay for now $155. which will go up to $170, so don't try and tell me what I pay unless you want to pay the bill, by all means be my guest, so I don't know what you mean by calling me out ,what is this a school yard and your attempts to bully are silly, I just have a different take on the Affordable Care Act than you. I strive to listen to all sides of the story and then make my best informed decision for me and mine , I said I don't like Obama 's policies regarding a lot of things but it is not a vendetta against him, it's some of his policies that I disagree with, this is still the United States of America and one of our greatest privileges is to be able to as you say "call out" our politicians ,and yes even the President , when we disagree with his policies, but to go running to the teacher/principal/ moderator to kick someone out because you disagree with their different point of view is pretty juvenile. I have often said that the Medical Care Industry in this country needs much needed reform, so when it was first proposed I was all for it, even back when the First Lady H. Clinton proposed it, but then the policy wonks went to work and they really screwed up a real good idea into a party perk platform, so you see it's not , President Obama's fault that the party wonks screwed up his plan, his problem was that he continues to allow them to screw it up further by thumbing their nose's at the electorate by granting subsidies and exemptions to certain supporters, and there is no way could you say that was done fairly and to say that it's the law is just being disingenuous because a law is for everyone not just for some but for all, and this law does apply to everyone. Now that is what a interested and engaged voter says and does, not a Democrat nor a Republican, but an independent thinking person who is not into any ideologue put out by our politicians. I call myself by my actions a moderate Democrat. If you can't handle that, then cease responding to my posts .
    Johnnycee --

    I can see you remain rigid in your views. So let me explain further where I am coming from.

    1) People writing in this website sometimes make outlandish claims. We push back on them and ask that they provide the sources for that information. If they cannot, we remain skeptical.

    2) Regarding your claim that the initial funding "to the tune of several hundred million dollars" for the Affordable care Act came from Social Security, it is simply not true, and you cannot find any sources to back that claim up. In fact Social Security funds have absolutely nothing to do with the Affordable Care Act. The Social Security Trust fund consists of surplus Social Security funds plus interest paid into the system since 1983. By law, income to the trust funds must be invested, on a daily basis, in securities guaranteed as to both principal and interest by the Federal government. All securities held by the trust funds are "special issues" of the United States Treasury. Such securities are available only to the trust funds.

    3) Medicare Advantage Plans are plans issued by private insurers but heavily subsidized by tax payers. In fact the subsidies have far exceeded the actual costs of those companies providing the benefits and hence have been immensely profitable to the insurers. As a part of the Affordable Care Act, the subsidies are being reduced by 12 percent each year until the costs are more in line with original Medicare costs.

    Medicare Advantage plan costs depend on the market place. Each insurer participating in a market offers a range of plans which can cost zero to maybe $200 or more per month depending on what they include. Because these plans are so lucrative the insurers have been able to include such things as free gym memberships and free transportation to clinics for check-ups, etc. I expect that with the 12 percent annual reduction in tax payer subsidies to these plans that one of the first "benefit reductions" will be the free gym memberships, but alternatively the insurer could just increase costs by 12 percent.

    It is easy to browse the internet to check costs in any market. That's what I did with the Keystone 65 HMO plans. I simply Googled Keystone 65 HMO and came up with this link.

    Keystone 65 HMO

    I found six different Keystone HMO options ranging from zero for medical only to $171.80 for the most expensive plan. Since you cited the cost of your wife's Keystone 65 HMO at $175 I assumed it for the Keystone 65 Preferred Rx HMO (coverage includes medical coverage including hearing, dental, and vision + prescription drug). Take a look at the link. Where did I go wrong in my analysis?

    So you and your wife's monthly cost for health insurance is $104.90 each for Medicare Part B. In addition your wife pays $175 for Medicare Advantage. You have chosen a Plan F for yourself which, if similar to many of the Advantage Plan F's across the country, also provides top of the line services and costs similar to the Keystone HMO plan of your wife.

    You obviously can afford that, but for me because my wife and I are in good health, we chose a cheaper option at $55 per month each in Colorado. And I still get a free gym membership at 24 Hour Fitness.

    What got me going is that you are blasting the cost of ObamaCare and then citing your Medicare and Medicare Advantage premiums in support of your criticism of ObamaCare. Yes the 12 percent increase in your Medicare Advantage plan can probably be attributed to ObamaCare, but if you were to ask others in this website who are over 60 and not yet qualifying for Medicare, they'll not have much sympathy for your case. Their premiums will be double or more what you are paying depending on the state.
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    I do not get a free gym membership, although I do get a discount from L.A. Fitness which is not done thru Social Security, I just get a senior citizens discount by just showing showing my Medi-Care card, I do feel those who are and in some case's soon will be in a worst position than I, but that does not negate the unfairness of the Affordable Care Act, it reminds that when I worked in a E.R. as a security guard, I watched the ER doctors as they made decisions based on their Triage policy, those who were treated and made whole were quite happy, while those who had to wait for their loved one to receive aid but because of the triage situation and their loved ones chance of making it were slim to none at best, and the ones who could be healed were treated first, theirs were not so fortunate, was it fair ,yes for the ones who survived but quite a different answer from those of the deceased, who wanted more to be done although it was hopeless, perhaps I am getting more dense in my old age but I still feel that I am getting hosed because of the Affordable Care Act, although maybe not as much as others, but I am still getting hosed. Since I went to the sites you mentioned I am now receiving tons of e-mails from health providers who I never even knew existed. I am not blaming you for that, but I certainly didn't need the added confusion to my already over loaded brain which is on the verge of just saying F##k it and pay as I go and hope I don't get seriously ill.
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    Out of fairness, taxpayers who cannot afford to, or choose not to visit a national park should not be forced to pay taxes which subsidize the vacations of those who do. If the tourist functions of the parks were breaking even, or even possibly making a profit, then the government shutdown would have practically no effect.
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    To bad no one bothers to check the congressional records. The republicans put thru bill after bill to open everything except Obama care from day one, the Democrats refused each bill. So, no don't blame the park ranger, Blame the Democrats.
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    jlt Wrote: To bad no one bothers to check the congressional records. The republicans put thru bill after bill to open everything except Obama care from day one, the Democrats refused each bill. So, no don't blame the park ranger, Blame the Democrats.
    Too bad you didn't bother to read the whole thread before sticking your head out from under the bridge!
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    My wife's and my Medex Part B went down $20 a month (and we have full coverage)!