SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Last Thursday, the Republican-controlled Senate took a major step toward eviscerating the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare. In a 51 to 48 vote, senators approved a proposal that would empower them to gut key provisions of the health care act without facing a filibuster by opposing Democrats. The following Tuesday, however, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) published research that depicted significant impacts from a repeal. Their top concerns involved vast numbers of uninsured Americans and skyrocketing premiums, which would effectively put medical care beyond the reach of millions. The charge is being led by House Speaker Paul Ryan, who has been trying to gut the wasteful federal government for years, seeking instead a greater reliance on privatization. To show the inherent dangers of providing citizens with access to health care, Ryan boldly renounced all of the socialist, Hitler-esque, taxpayer funded benefits he receives as a member of Congress.
Making America Less Nazi AgainOn January 11, shortly before his troubled press conference, Trump issued a controversial tweet about being victimized by U.S. intelligence agencies, the free press and other intrusive, truth-seeking groups that undermine the smooth functioning of conservative governance. “Are we living in Nazi Germany?” Trump asked in his post.
Many Republican lawmakers seem to think so. Obamacare not only hobbles the economy by forcing medical insurers to offer better service and affordable premiums, it also opens the doors to socialism. Ryan and his peers have spent eight years cautioning voters against the perils of Nazism, which they believe will manifest as the New World Order should Congress prevent the defunding of Obamacare.
As conservative political experts understand, providing a nation’s people with affordable and universal health coverage inevitably leads to the extermination of millions within an arbitrarily chosen ethnic or religious group. It also undermines the foundations of Economic Darwinism, which is the strength behind the wildly successful trickle-down financial theories that have saved the country from recession and impending ruin, time after time. To demonstrate Ryan’s commitment, solidarity and bravery, his office announced that the speaker would be forsaking all the taxpayer subsidized benefits and perks he receives as an elected official.
Benefits of Preventing Americans from Receiving BenefitsAccording to CBO data: “The number of people who are uninsured would increase by 18 million in the first new plan year following enactment of the bill. Later, after the elimination of the ACA’s expansion of Medicaid eligibility and of subsidies for insurance purchased through the ACA marketplaces, that number would increase to 27 million, and then to 32 million in 2026.”
“In addition to the effects on insurance coverage from a repeal, the CBO report estimates that premiums would increase 20-25% more than they would if the ACA were kept in place over the next year,” Business Insider reported. “If a full repeal occurs, this would hit 50% over current projections of premium increases under the ACA. One of the main Republican complaints about Obamacare is the increase in premiums for 2017.”
The figures certainly paint a dire portrait. But Ryan said these drastic catastrophes would be necessary to liberate the free market from the past decade of imprisonment. “Nobody wants to live in a world without options,” Ryan remarked. “Under Obamacare, Americans get to live. They don’t have a choice. I want to remove those shackles.”
Without affordable and comprehensive medical care, the country would see a momentary hike in premiums and a temporary lapse of coverage. However, as desperate citizens fight to save their families, they will force insurers to become more competitive.
“If people can’t afford Cigna, for example, Cigna will lose money,” Ryan explained. “Kaiser might see what’s happening and start dropping their fees. That means more business coming Kaiser’s way. This is the core tenet of capitalism. I think the funeral industry would also enjoy tremendous gains in the near-term, which would create more jobs and more economic stimulation. And as our herd thins a bit, this could also lead to a greater number of job openings.”
Ryan Abandons Bloated, Undeserved Congressional BenefitsEach of the 535 Congress members earns at least $174,000 per year thanks to the American taxpayer, whose median household income is about $50,000. The only exceptions include the Speaker of the House (salary of $223,500) and the minority and majority leaders in the House and Senate (salary of $193,400). House Speaker Ryan finds that offensive.
“There’s no reason I should be receiving such an absurdly high salary as a civil servant,” he said. “I mean, I’m raking in almost a quarter of a million dollars to sit around and do nothing. My job should be to help people, and I’m not helping if I’m making them pay me nearly five times as much as they make.”
Ryan said he will accept no salary beyond $50,000 per year during the remainder of his terms.
Senators also receive a discretionary allowance of $4.2 million to cover whatever incidental needs or wants they may have: staff salaries, office furniture, exotic travel and even free mail, something known as “franking,” a term for the mass constituent mail sent out by members of Congress. The tab is settled courtesy of the taxpayer.
Ryan said he would let taxpayers determine how that $4.2 million should be spent. As for franking, Ryan laughed derisively and told his constituents, “I can buy my own stamps. What I want to stop are stamps handed out by the government, especially if they’re for food.”
The Congressional 2017 calendar has around 139 working days scheduled. That’s an average workweek of about three days. Ryan vowed to put in the same 40-hour week as the folks he represents, or he will limit his state’s work week to three days in the spirit of fair play. He also pledged to get rid of his free Congressional gym privileges, free parking at airports, private elevators and subways, his $3,000 per diem and his automatic $3,000 tax deduction for living expenses.
Ryan lamented the number of Americans who have had to endure the “tortures of the damned” under universal health care. To show his disdain for this kind of detrimental socialism, he revealed Tuesday that he had opted out of taxpayer funded medical benefits -- including free medical services at the Office of the Attending Physician and outpatient care at nearby Bethesda Naval Hospital -- along with generous pension plans, the likes of which are no longer available to most working adults in the private sector.
Finally, Ryan called on his supporters to petition Congress to outlaw provisions that legally allow senators and representatives to vote for their own pay increases. Most recently, they gave themselves a $4,700 per year pay hike. In December, President Obama also announced an additional 2.1 percent raise, effective January 2017, which fiscally minded Republicans chose not to block. “There’s a lot more that hard-working Americans can do with $4,700 than Congress can,” he said.
“It’s evident in the speaker’s recent speeches that he might be suffering the onset of dementia, or possibly even Alzheimer’s,” one member of the Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights told reporters. “But instead of seeking top-notch medical treatment for free, Mr. Ryan is showing his disapproval of Obamacare and socialized medical programs, such as those enjoyed by Congress, by forgoing these world-class services.”
No other senators or representatives have made the same overtures, but the speaker’s bold principles have put all of his peers in the awkward position of having to make deep sacrifices -- or face angry voters.
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