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Sorting Facts From Fiction: Common Myths About Obamacare
People can be suspicious or even fearful of change, and this can be something as simple as worrying about finding a new place to have breakfast after your favorite place closes down. When it comes to an event or occurrence that could potentially make some major changes to society, people can be downright angry about it, although this is often due to perceived changes to their life that might not even happen. When a new law or government scheme is introduced, a huge amount of misinformation or opinion masquerading as fact is spread around, and the facts of the matter can often become distorted or even totally ignored. This seems to be the case with the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare; and while you might not agree with the proposed changes to the healthcare system, it can be difficult to understand the facts of the matter, since all the background commentary tends to focus on one or two small portions of the scheme. So let’s sort the facts from the fiction and have a look at some of the most common misconceptions about Obamacare.
Are You Worthy of Living?
Former Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin was ridiculed for her statements on Russia: “They’re our next-door neighbors, and you can actually see Russia from land here in Alaska, from an island in Alaska.” This is technically true, but it became synonymous with her views on Foreign Policy and was brilliantly parodied in the “I can see Russia from my house” Saturday Night Live sketch. So while her credibility had arguably been diminished, many people still believed her when she claimed that Obamacare would result in so-called “Death Panels” of healthcare professionals that would decide whether or not a sick or elderly person should continue to receive healthcare, and as such, whether they live or die. Palin’s assertion was proven to be her rather particular and ultimately incorrect interpretation of the wording of the bill, and there was nothing in the legislation that would have led to this kind of brutal healthcare.
They’re Watching You!
Another popular myth that arose from the implementation of Obamacare was the idea that the sick and elderly would be forced to have a microchip tracking device implanted, in order for the government to monitor their wellbeing and whereabouts 24/7. In an age when Amazon are planning to have unmanned drone helicopters deliver packages, such a sci-fi idea isn’t outside the realm of possibility, but this is simply a case of a myth being attached to a portion of the bill and becoming fact in many peoples minds. The Department of Health and Human Services wanted to collect data pertaining to implanted medical technology, such as a pacemaker, but this in no way would have allowed any kind of “tracking” and was more of a registry to make maintenance and recalls far easier, and wasn’t eventually included in the final law.
Everything is Changing… Forever!
If you believe some conservative news sources, Obamacare is a sign of the apocalypse, and yet the response was somewhat similar when Medicare and Medicaid were introduced in 1965, although back then, there was no Internet to spread rumors. Obamacare doesn’t replace Medicare, Medicaid or privately held health insurance, and while the changes are far-reaching, for millions of Americans, Obamacare barely impacts on their lives. The key is in the formal name; the scheme is called the Affordable Healthcare Act, and is aimed at lower income citizens. Naturally to fund these multiple new provisions, taxation laws must be amended, and those who are in a higher tax bracket, as well as corporations, will pay a little more, which seems to be a major point of opposition to the act. Those in a low or middle income tax bracket might be entitled to a tax subsidy, so this should certainly be investigated, and if there’s any doubt about your obligations or entitlements pertaining to any area of the act, you might want to consult a Law Center for Social Security Rights in your area, since these are the best people to help you sort the facts from the fiction.