Monday, May 21, 2018

Have Medical Bills Ever Bankrupt You Or Anyone You Were Close To?


Remember this photo of Roger Stone and I? I was backstage at Politicon, where Randy was giving a keynote address at the Latino Victory Project. Afterwards we ditched Stone and went for dinner. The waiter recognized him and treated him like a celebrity. Randy didn't have a credit card. He doesn't have a credit card. He's not a rich guy. I picked up the modest tab. Over the weekend, Randy sent this to his supporters:
Like a lot of veterans, after I was discharged from the Army, I struggled to find work that paid enough. Eventually I took two full-time jobs, and was able to just squeeze by-- but then I was diagnosed with testicular cancer. I was only in my late 20s, and despite my two jobs, I didn't have insurance. In the end, the bills from my cancer treatment bankrupted me.

My story is not unique. Thousands of working people and families across Wisconsin have experienced the same soul-crushing decision to file for bankruptcy. But the Republicans in D.C. gave millionaires and billionaires more tax cuts while telling us that we can't pay for Medicare for All, or anything else that would help families struggling to make ends meet.

A single-payer healthcare system like Medicare for All would lower costs for families and businesses by giving the government greater negotiating power with health insurance companies and untying health insurance from employment.

For too many families, the scariest thing about cancer is the cost. When they get the diagnosis, their first thought isn't, "will I make it?" it's "can I afford it?" And sadly, it's true for people with and without insurance.

I was lucky. I survived and was able to come out on the other side of some incredibly hard times -- but I know many, many more have not been so lucky. Healthcare is a right, not a privilege-- and no one should have to file bankruptcy just to afford life-saving treatment.

The U.S. already has the most expensive healthcare system in the world, but Donald Trump's allies in Congress are doing everything they can to make it even harder for families to pay for healthcare. And the industry's for-profit model means families are often faced with inexplicably high drug and test costs.

We have to pass Medicare for All. If we do better, no one will ever have to go through what I went through ever again.
See that word, "bankrupted?" A lot of people know what that is from first-hand experience. Media elites tend not to... though they've heard of it as something that happens to other people. Randy has the most valuable brand-- @IronStache-- of any candidate running for Congress. He had 271,000 followers on Twitter. He has 200,000 Facebook likes. His first video had 4 million social media views. Members of Congress have asked him to come to their districts to campaign for them. I've never heard of that before. It's usually the other way-- members of Congress campaign for candidates. The first member of Congress who came to Randy's district, aside from his immediate neighbors Mark Pocan and Gwen Moore, was Bernie Sanders to announce that he had endorsed Randy.

A lot of people are jealous. And a lot of media folks would like to enhance their own reputations by knocking Randy down a peg or two. Some journalist who can dig up some dirt can make a name for himself.

Randy has a couple of primary opponents and one lies about him all the time. A Hillary supporter when Randy was stumping with Bernie in 2016 she's persuaded her followers that she was the Berniecrat instead. Every time she's throwing her bullshit I want to write about it. Randy has asked me not to. He doesn't believe in negative campaigning against other Democrats ever and he asked me to try changing my behavior as well. "Let's save the negativity for Ryan or Nehlen or for whoever the GOP nominates he told me one time."

But... her campaign operative-- a consultant who she pays $6,000 a month-- has been going to members of the media bad-mouthing Randy and trying to get made up stories going about him from when he was struggling in poverty. The working people Randy appeals to don't pay any of the bullshit much heed. The same stories could be told about them or their families or their friends. But not about the media elites who gobble it up. Gobble this up instead; it's just as real.

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At 5:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Proof that someone has no idea what he's talking about.

"A single-payer healthcare system like Medicare for All would lower costs for families and businesses by giving the government greater negotiating power with health insurance companies and untying health insurance from employment."

jeezis effing kreist!! MFA means NO MORE HEALTH INSURANCE! It means you pick your doctor, see him/her, they charge the M in MFA (government) who reimburses. Where in that recipe does INSURANCE appear??
No more health insurance. no more 30% or more admin/profit layer. no more profit motive to NOT treat whatever you got. no more care denials.
no more guarantees to phrma that they can gouge you for bigger profits.
no more copays (potentially).

Boy, I'd sure like to buy the story you're peddling about Bryce. But the more I read and hear, the more it sounds like snake oil.

Sadly, he's running as a 'crap. As such, even if he *is* genuine, but terribly naïve, he's still irrelevant. Pelosi and her oligarch cabal will never allow MFA, though they may hold it hostage for a billion in donations from those lobbies. But, and I cannot stress this enough, if they pay, NO WAY!! Doesn't matter what Bryce or even 100 Bryces want.


At 8:12 PM, Blogger Gadfly said...

Anon... and Howie still won't tell you about Stache's better primary opponent Cathy Myers. And it's clear now that Howie won't do that before primary election day.

OH, even better than MFA would be a British-style National HEalth System, but only we non-duopoly leftists even talk about that.

At 9:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cathy Myers is the much better candidate for Wisconsin's First Congressional District. Better and more detailed policies. More experience. Find out more:

At 10:15 PM, Blogger capper said...

Myers the tax cheat? The one bereft of any original ideas? The one that has alienated almost all of the members of Congress that she wants to work with? That Cathy Myers? It is to laugh.

At 5:55 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gadfly, ty. I was simply shining the light on Stache's profound ignorance.

It bears investigating all SP and even some blended (like the Swiss) systems to cherry-pick the best. Being nearby, the Canada model could be a candidate also.

But of course with or without stache or myers, the 'craps have no intention of doing any of that as long as they get paid not to.

obamanation so vowed to the lobbies in 2008. And the 'craps are far worse today than then.

At 6:32 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My grandmother was reduced to penury due to the massive medical bills my grandfather ran up. She ended up resorting to insurance fraud to make a living.


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