This is a strange time to be traveling in the Philippines. Apparently two days ago a protest began. Hurray for my great timing?? It lasts from July 20th to July 25th.
The protest involves Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) who are facing a steep increase in the amount they pay for health insurance. The facebook page OFW Voices is trying to get over 1 million likes.
Being in a different country when a protest begins is a new experience. Because this is currently a social media protest I do not feel my wife and I are in any danger. But it is still awkward.
Because I am an outsider, I am not even sure of the amount of the increase… although I do understand it is ridiculously high. One source I found said 150-percent, and another source listed the increase as 167-percent. Either way that is a huge increase for a health insurance premium. For those who are not familiar, Overseas Filipino Workers already pay remittances to the Filipino government for any salary they earn in another country.
In America people are already upset about paying for Obamacare. I cannot imagine what people would do if it went up 150-percent!
Thursday morning the Supreme Court delivered its ruling on the constitutionality of the Obama Administration’s greatest achievement. After the Citizen’s United Ruling I honestly wasn’t sure what to expect from the Supreme Court.
The Individual Mandate
Is it constitutional for the government to require people to have some form of health care coverage or pay a penalty? According to the Supreme Court, yes as reported by CNN… it will be upheld as a tax, because the IRS would be the ones who enforce the penalty. Therefore it was not upheld as part of the commerce clause but as a tax.
They voted 5 to 4 in favor of the law.
The Medicaid Expansion
Is is acceptable for the expansion of Medicare to cover even more people? According to the Supreme Court’s vote, yes.
Pre-existing medical condition
Will Americans with pre-existing medical conditions still be able to get medical insurance? According to the Supreme Court, yes.
Overall, I was surprised by the Supreme Court’s decision. They upheld the entire law. This is very important for poorer people who CANNOT afford health insurance. But I am surprised they upheld the entire thing. Based on news reports coming out in the days ahead of this, I was expecting parts of the law to be upheld and other parts to be thrown out. So getting up this morning to hear the news (7 a.m. on the West Coast), I was expecting a very confusing ruling with some parts of the law upheld and other parts to be thrown out. But they kept the entire thing. Wow!
What did you think?