Sunday, December 22, 2013

Obama's health insurance system has become a complete mess in the USA


If something is 'messy' it is not orderly or systematic.  So if something is a 'mess' it is difficult to understand or use and it is not well-organized.

When Obama was running for his second term as president, he made some statements about the new US healthcare system that turned out to be false.  Now many people believe that Obama deliberately (if you do something deliberately, you choose to do it, it is not an accident) lied about the healthcare system.

Most Americans seem to distrust and even dislike Obama at this point.  People who had good health insurance will lose their insurance and they will have to pay more money for worse health insurance coverage.  People who do not have much money will be forced to buy insurance they don't have money for.

So basically the 'affordable' (if something is affordable it does not cost too much money) health insurance Obama promised is not affordable and it's not very good. And basically the law states that everyone 'has to' have some type of insurance or the people who refuse to get insurance will be fined (they will be punished by being forced to pay money to the government).

Furthermore, the website that the US government established so that people can buy the insurance didn't work when it was started and there are still big problems with the web site.  So people who want to buy the insurance still can't.

There are over 50 million people in the USA who do not have health insurance, and so far only 1 million have bothered to buy the insurance.  Many people seem to be refusing to even buy the insurance.

So now this situation is causing people from Obama's own Democratic Party to start to worry. There are going to be huge elections next year for the US Congress and people are so angry about "Obamacare" that they will probably vote against Democratic politicians and for Republican politicians.

There is a comment section under the following article.  If you want to read how angry Americans are about Obamacare, you can read the comments section. 

Here is an article about this situation:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/health/sns-rt-us-usa-healthcare-20131220,0,5751122.story

Vocabulary to help you understand the article:

a meltdown - this is when everything goes wrong and something completely fails and there are negative consequences.  The Chernobyl nuclear power plant (facility) had a 'meltdown' in the 1980s - this meant some huge problem occurred and the nuclear power facility (plant) was partially destroyed and released a lot of radiation that killed people.  So now if something terrible happens it is often called a 'meltdown.'

The Senate - the US Congress (where laws are made) is divided into two parts: The Senate and the House.  Right now Republicans outnumber Democrats in the House but Democrats outnumber Republicans in the Senate.  It is difficult for Obama to do much as president because the Congress is divided.  If Republicans control both the House and the Senate, Obama will not be able to do anything.

urged delaying a penalty - because the system doesn't work (the website doesn't even work) this Senator is saying that it would be wrong to punish people for not signing up for the insurance on time.  he urged (encouraged) delaying (putting off or postponing) 

to enroll in s/t - please remember this is kind of a phrasal verb, you always enroll 'in' something or enroll for s/t.  To enroll in something means to sign up for something to become a part of something.

transitional year - a year in which people get used to the system and begin moving into it; if you transition from one thing to another, you move from one thing to another

it falls of its own weight - this means the Obamacare system is so bad that it is failing purely because it is bad, not because of any other reason or factor

the cost became more than we can absorb - the cost is too high for us to handle or deal with

scrambling - basically running around desperately, running around in a panic

botched - messed up, ruined, broken

to botch something - to mess something up, to ruin something, to break something so that it doesn't work

higher premiums - the amount that has to be paid per month

lingering problems - problems that won't go away

woes - problems

the chamber - the Senate

highlighting - focusing on

the bungled launch - the messed up or bad beginning; to bungle something is to botch something

public approval numbers - the number of people who think Obama is doing a good job. Not many people think he is doing a good job any more. He couldn't even put up a web site that worked.

a debut - a beginning or a start

a hardship exemption - hardship means 'difficult times' an exemption means' you don't have to do something' so if someone had his/her insurance cancelled because of Obamacare, they can apply for an 'exemption': they might not have to sign up for the insurance by March 2014.

trending Republican - more and more people are becoming Republicans there

conservative - the opposite of liberal.  Republicans tend to be conservative while Democrats tend to be liberal.  Conservatives believe in low-taxes and few restrictions or laws to control businesses.  Liberals believe in higher taxes, more social programs and more laws to control businesses.

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