Author: Winning Progressive

Morning Feature – Celebrating Obamacare Success Stories

Conservatives and their media enablers don’t want you to know it, but #Obamacare is working to help millions of Americans. Help spread the word. (More) Since the October 1 launch of the health care exchanges, vast numbers of Americans have benefited from the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.  In the first month of the exchanges, more than 500,000 people gained insurance coverage, and enrollment has surged since then in at least the state-run exchanges.  Many of these newly insured have been unable to afford insurance for years and live in poor areas, such as rural eastern Kentucky, where health services for the uninsured have long been scarce.  And the benefits of Obamacare go far beyond just the exchanges.  Three to six million young adults have gained coverage thanks to Obamacare’s requirement that parents be able to keep their children on their policies until age 26.  Seniors and people with disabilities have saved $8.9 billion in prescription drugs since 2010.  Between 36 million and 122 million Americans no longer have to worry about a preexisting condition exclusion foreclosing their ability to gain coverage.  And Obamacare’s cost-savings provisions have helped achieve the significant reduction in the increase in health care spending that has occurred over the past few years. Despite the widespread benefits of the Affordable Care Act, the media over the past two months has been obsessively focused...

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Furthermore! – Weekend Reading for October 20, 2013

This weekend we have articles on the successful rollout of Obamacare in states that created exchanges, how economic inequality fuels itself, President Obama’s pick to head the Department of Homeland Security, how hospitals rake in obscene amounts of profits, and declining food stamp benefits. (More) The Truth About the ObamaCare Rollout – while the media has focused on a number of serious flaws in the computerized registration system for the federal health care exchange, the state exchanges are doing much better and there is still plenty of time for the process to work. Poverty Breeds More Poverty – an essay about how how economic inequality fuels even further economic inequality in the absence of government policies to counteract such inequality. Jeh Johnson: Why Obama’s Left-Field DHS Pick Could be an Agent of Change – President Obama’s new pick to head the Department of Homeland Security, Jeh Johnson, who previously helped end Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and who last fall cautioned against an unending militarized war against terrorism, could help reform an agency that needs significant reforms. Prognosis: Profits – a multi-part investigative series in the Charlotte Observer about how hospitals in the area are making increasingly obscene amounts of profits at the expense of patients SNAP Benefits Will Be Cut For All Participants in November 2013 – As a result of the accelerated sunsetting of the increase in food...

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Furthermore! – Weekend Reading for October 13, 2013

This weekend we have a profile of an organization that helps low-wage workers in Los Angeles, what the Tea Party really represents, a Nobel Prize winner on affordable and high quality education, and more. (More) L.A. Story – a profile Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy, a think tank, policy shop, and political organizing group that over the past 20 years “has become the nation’s most innovative and effective force for raising the incomes of low-wage private-sector workers.” Tea Party Radicalism is Misunderstood – an argument that the Tea Party isn’t just a bunch of unhinged and uninformed populists, but instead is the latest incarnation of a mostly Southern and white conservative elite adopting new tactics to try to hold onto power in a nation that is becoming more diverse and more tolerant. Could This 2013 Nobel Laureate Afford College Today? – Randy Scheckman, one of this year’s Nobel prize winners in medicine, is passionate about the opportunities that he had thanks to the availability of high quality, low cost public universities in California in the late-1960s, and about the importance of our creating such opportunities again today. The Shame of Our Prisons – a review of the latest data on the inexcusably high levels of sexual victimization of adult and juvenile inmates in our nation’s jails and prisons The Final Insult in the Bush-Cheney Marriage – an...

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Morning Feature – President Obama Stands Firm Against Reckless Republican Hostage Taking

Today the U.S. government is shut down because Tea Party Republicans refuse to pass a clean budget and House Republican leaders refuse to stand up to these reckless reactionaries. (More) Yesterday afternoon, as it became clear that a shutdown would occur, President Obama gave a great speech laying out exactly what is happening here, who is to blame, and why it matters. First, the President made clear that the shutdown is an entirely manufactured crisis that does not need to occur: And it doesn’t have to happen. Let me repeat this: It does not have to happen. All of this is entirely preventable if the House chooses to do what the Senate has already done – and that’s the simple act of funding our government without making extraneous and controversial demands in the process, the same way other Congresses have for more than 200 years. What is especially frustrating about this manufactured crisis is that neither a majority of the Senate or the House supports shutting down the government. If a clean continuing budget resolution were to come to a vote in the House, it would almost certainly pass, and then would pass the Senate and be signed by the president. But, as our president explained, “one faction of one party, in one house of Congress, in one branch of government” – Tea Party House Republicans – has decided to shut...

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Furthermore! – Weekend Reading for September 29, 2013: Health Care Reform Edition

For this weekend’s progressive reading list, we have a pro-Affordable Care Act column from Governor Steve Beshear of Kentucky, along with a series of reports on how various provisions of Obamacare have already saved billions of dollars per year for consumers. (More) My State Needs Obamacare. Now. – an impassioned explanation from Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear (D) of how his state, which is the only Southern state to both expand Medicaid and establish state health insurance exchanges, will benefit from the Affordable Care Act. Health Insurance Marketplace Premiums for 2014 – a study from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services finding that the cost of health insurance under the Affordable Care Act will be lower than originally projected by the Congressional Budget Office for 94% of Americans. Beyond Rebates – a report finding that the Affordable Care Act’s medical-loss ratio provisions led to savings for customers in the individual insurance market of $1.2 billion in 2011 and $2.1 billion in 2012. The Affordable Care Act: a Stronger Medicare Program in 2012 – a report estimating that Medicare recipients saved a total of $5.7 billion in 2011 and 2012 due to the phased closing of the prescription drug plan donut hole Quantifying the Effects of Health Insurance Rate Review – a report estimating that Obamacare’s provision requiring the review of proposed increases in health insurance costs had worked...

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