Do you remember “Harry & Louise”?

Here’s a reminder. Watch both commercials, but especially the second one. There’s a LOT going on here:

2/ First of all, notice how in 1993, “community rating” (i.e., not being allowed to charge people more based on their health status) was considered a HORRIBLE thing.
3/ Cut to 2018: 8 yrs after the Affordable Care Act was signed into law, 89% of the public thinks it’s important NOT to charge people more for their health insurance based on their health status. EIGHTY-NINE PERCENT. This is the real legacy of the #ACA.…
4/ Second: Notice how “Louise” berates community rating because everyone pays the same amount “even if they smoke or whatever”. Sure, it’s easy to sneer at people who choose to smoke, but ‘WHATEVER’ refers to millions of people with pre-existing conditions which are genetic, too.
5/ “…or whatever” also refers to millions of people who live in areas with high concentrations of toxins in the air, water and ground which cause health problems they can’t do much about no matter how “responsible” they are with their lives.
6/ Related to this: Noice how Harry, Louise and their buddy “Pat” are all white, middle-aged suburbanites. They’re healthy, too—Harry and Pat are playing basketball while Louise is an avid bicycle rider. No chemotherapy treatments, leg braces or asthma attacks for these yuppies!
7/ But here’s the REAL kicker for me as a data nerd: “Pat” complains that his insurance “went from $1,200 to $3,200 a year”. The ad ran in 1993. Adjusted for inflation, those figures would be $2,100 and $5,600 respectively, or from $175/mo to $467/mo.
8/ Guess what? $467/month just happens to be almost EXACTLY what the average #ACA enrollee was paying for a Silver plan in 2017.…
9/ 2017 also happens to be the same year that the #ACA markets finally FULLY STABILIZED, with insurance carriers returning to full profitability for the first time since the pre-ACA days. In other words, after several rocky years, THEY FINALLY HAD IT.…
10/ It was right AFTER this, of course, that Trump and the GOP pushed the #ACASabotage throttle to the floor, causing 2018 rates to spike an extra *17%* for no useful reason…
11/ …and then THIS year, when #MandateRepeal + #ShortAssPlans are pushing rates up about 9% higher than they would be otherwise:
12/ Sonething else to keep in mind: “Pat” never explains just what’s actually *covered* by his $2,100/year-in-2018-dollars Insurance policy. Is it a junk plan? Does it cover hospitalization? Prescription drugs? Outpatient care? Surgery? Mental health services? Blood tests?
13/ the thing is, I honestly don’t remember much about the details of the “Hillarycare” plan itself. Maybe it was good, maybe it sucked. What I *do* remember is that because it attempted to COMPLETELY overhaul the entire U.S. healthcare system in one shot...
14/ brought the FULL OPPOSITION of the entire health insurance and pharmacy industries. They were absolutely brutal and ended up tearing down the whole thing. Hillary WAS able to successfully help bring about the CHIP program a few years later.…
15/ This was one of the reasons why President Obama and the Dems in Congress DIDN’T try to push through full SP the next time they had a shot at health reform. He knew that if they tried for the whole enchilada, there was a very high chance of not getting ANYTHING.
16/ The ACA moved the ball from the Dems 40-yard line to the GOP’s 40-yard line. I suspect the next major accomplishment will be to move it to their 20-yard line...a much stronger ACA 2.0, including a robust Public Option, perhaps based on Medicaid.
17/ if you think the insurance and pharmacy lobbies aren’t gonna fight tooth & nail against any M4A/SP proposal with EVERY ounce of power, money and influence they have, guess again: They’re already prepping for that war:…
18/ ...which is why it’s worth considering what the actual GOAL is here. It’s UNIVERSAL, QUALITY, COMPREHENSIVE, AFFORDABLE COVERAGE. As I discussed here, that CAN include Single Payer, but doesn’t necessarily HAVE to:
ADDENDUM: The Clintons actually whipped up their own parody of the “Harry & Louise” ads featuring themselves. It was a strange time. Not as strange as today, of course...

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More from @charles_gaba

Aug 27, 2018
⚠️ GRAPHICS-HEAVY THREAD: Next week, the #TexasFoldEm lawsuit brought by 20 Republican Attorneys General against the #ACA goes to court. The Trump Administration is refusing to defend against it even though it EVERY legal expert says it’s a pile of steaming garbage. 1/
2/ If the #TexasFoldEm plaintiffs succeed, federal protections for those w/#PreExistingConditions would be gone. Not just on the individual market…people w/EMPLOYER coverage would be at risk as well, especially since most people are out of a job at least once in their lives.
3/ Here’s a reminder of the idiotic “argument” the #TexasFoldEm plaintiffs are using:
1. SCOTUS ruled the #ACA mandate is only Constitutional because it’s a tax.
2. The GOP repealed the mandate tax.
3. Therefore, they get to repeal the rest of the #ACA as well.
Really. That’s it.
Read 67 tweets
Aug 21, 2018
THREAD: For those who still don’t understand how important the #ACA #TexasFoldEm case is (along #StopKavanaugh), here’s a simple timeline of the ACA’s 3-Legged Stool:
1/ Here’s how the #ACA’s 3-Legged Stool was *supposed* to work when the law was passed. The blue leg includes the patient protections. The red leg is the part everyone hated but which served an important purpose. The green leg is the financial help for people to pay for it.
2/ This is what it ACTUALLY ended up looking like: There were two main problems. The financial assistance was cut off at 400% FPL income (& wasn’t generous enough), and the mandate penalty wasn’t strong enough to be fully effective. Both were EASILY fixable.
Read 13 tweets
Aug 10, 2018
ATTENTION MICHIGAN RESIDENTS: I’m trying to track down the Twitter handles for the following 2018 Democratic nominees; please help if you can, thanks!

HD001: Tenisha Yancey
HD003: Wendell Byrd
HD004: Isaac Robinson
HD005: Cynthia A. Johnson
HD006: Tyrone Carter
HD012: Alex Garza
HD013: Frank Liberati
HD014: Cara Clemente
HD016: Kevin Coleman
HD022: John Chirkun
HD024: Laura Winn
HD025: Nate Shannon
HD028: Lori M. Stone
HD030: John P. Spica
HD031: William J. Sowerby
HD032: Paul Manley
HD036: Robert Murphy
HD045: Kyle Cooper
HD048: Sheryl Y. Kennedy
HD049: John D. Cherry
(yes, THAT John Cherry…he doesn’t seem to be on Twitter?)
HD050: Tim Sneller
HD051: David E. Lossing
HD054: Ronnie D. Peterson
HD056: Ernie Whiteside
HD057: Amber Pedersen
HD058: Tamara C. Barnes
HD059: Dennis B. Smith
HD063: Jennifer Aniano
Read 5 tweets
Aug 10, 2018
THREAD: Yeah, I have insomnia, so here’s some wonky info re. single payer, M4A and the Michigan Gubernatorial primary. 1/
2/ Now that the #MIGov primary is over, since the most contentious debate between El-Sayed and Whitmer (besides 'dark money') was about single-payer healthcare, let's get a few things straight:
3/ 1. "Single Payer" refers to any healthcare system where the gov’t is the payment source for healthcare providers (doctors/hospitals/drug cos/etc).
Read 44 tweets
Aug 8, 2018
How Much More Will #ACASabotage Cost Unsubsidized Enrollees in YOUR Congressional District???
1/ Last year, I posted state-by-state infographics which broke out the estimated number of Americans who would lose healthcare coverage if each of the various #ACA repeal bills form the GOP were to become law.
2/ At first I used my own estimates, but then @EmilyG_DC and her colleagues from the Center for American Progress (@amprog) stepped up and started compiling their own projections. Their methodology was different but our estimates were generally in the same range.
Read 67 tweets
Aug 5, 2018
Annnnd they’re finally being completely honest: They’re not Americans anymore.
For anyone wondering, here’s where this came from:…
Read 7 tweets

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