Lions and Tigers and Medicare — Oh MY!

I had no idea when it came to signing up for Medicare that I would be as deeply and irrationally afraid of the process as Dorothy was of (Dare I say say the word??) bears. 🙂 But to tell you the truth, I actually had such a strong irrational fear of the process that even though I had been given information regarding the process all the way back in December, I had put it aside until 2 weeks before my effective start date.

But the process was easier than I expected, thanks to the time I spent in law school.

(Dear self, thank you for learning how to parse legalese. Understanding government-speak and contract language is by far the most intimidating part of this process.)

I was glad it was so easy to decide on the choice that was so clearly the only “not terrible” option for me, but sad to see that once again I was forced to choose between giving money to Anthem Blue Cross and Kaiser Permanente. It seems like whether the insurance is coming through the government or not, it’s going through them. So I stuck with Anthem – at least then, I wouldn’t have to switch my doctors.

Did you all know that Medicare has become so privatized that when you sign up for Medicare, they take the premium out of your Social Security benefits? Come March, I’ll get to see what it’s like to live off $758 MINUS my new Medicare premium of $115 + $39 for preventative dental and eye care. That’s a whopping $604 a month to live on – total, not including any prescription medication. An average of $20 a day in Glendale, CA in the year 2011. Could you do it?

I don’t think it’s reasonable to think anyone could, and I think it’s disgusting that Republicans think that it’s Social Security bringing the country down because of news reports like this that get people riled up and thinking that everyone is a fucking scammer… when it’s clear to me that this “news” reporter didn’t bother to get his story straight!

What they’re talking about is called Your Ticket to Work and Self Sufficiency! I got sent that son-of-a-bitch about a week after they approved me. The deal is that if you don’t have enough money and you need more money to live off of, you should call them! You call a number, you get job placement, with them in full knowledge of your disability and how it affects your ability to work. They will find you a job that works WITH your disability so that you can do something to help EARN your pay within the workplace and within the system. And the big payoff for you is that you don’t have to go through that fuckin awful checkup every 3 years where they hem and haw and decide if you’re still really disabled.

At this point, however, you are broke. You are hurting. The federal government has you over a fucking barrel, bent over sideways, because they know that you have no fucking money and that you can barely work if you can work at all, but that you are DESPERATE and will do what they want you to do. So they don’t have to pay you as much!

This is how you create a class of slave workers.

Then allow it to get out that disabled people are working without getting checked on! NOT THIS! Allowing it to continue to the point of excess creates a backlog of people to check for disability so great that suddenly ALL of them are liars.

Now your cripples are scapegoats.

First friends, then the unfortunate, then federal slaves, and now foes.

I was brought up to TRUST the government! I was brought up to LOVE America!

But this makes me sick. It is so fucking difficult to be disabled in this country. And to be poor.

It feels like there is a very assault upon my life by the Republican agenda, as though simply by existing as a woman with multiple sclerosis, seizure disorder, and post traumatic stress disorder, I don’t deserve to live because I cannot make someone else money at this moment.

I’ve worked very, very hard throughout my whole life. I’ve achieved a bachelor of music, a juris doctor – I took the bar exam twice while battling through seizures. I achieved that bachelor of music while in a relationship that could have easily convinced me not to go to classes. I foster kittens and have spent time volunteering with many philanthropies throughout my life. It’s not fair that I get the message, “You’re the problem” from the right.

When are people going to wake up and realize there are people trying to kill the elderly and the disabled?

Think about it, people. Really, really think about it for a moment. How many truly crafty cripples do you know? It’s the sociopaths we need to stop.

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