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Part 2: Video--"323,000 TennCare Cuts"

Alexa's picture

[Video Credit: 323,000 (Tenncare Cuts), Sharon Cobb, YouTube, 40:59 Minutes]

This story is a very important and powerful one--especially since it should serve as a "reminder" that the Democratic Party cannot always be trusted to protect our social insurance system!

Note: In fairness, I have seen several "figures" for the final number of cuts to the TennCare rolls. I cannot account for the fluctuations, or differences. I imagine that the numbers changed at various stages, due to the negotiation process with the "Tennessee Justice Center"* and other non-profits.

*The Tennessee Justice Center (TJC) is a non-profit[1][3] public policy advocacy organization[2] and law firm based in Nashville, Tennessee. It was established in 1996 to represent approximately 1.3 million Tennessee low-income families by helping shape public policy[2] and through class action lawsuits. In 1996, the United States Congress had ordered that federally funded legal services programs no longer pursue class actions.[4] Since its formation, the Tennessee Justice Center has helped thousands of poor families secure needed health care, assistance, and food aid.[5]

[The End]


Alexa's picture
Submitted by Alexa on

This video may be a little lengthy, but it is definitely worth watching. [Which is the reason that I didn't attempt to make a short "clip."]

As usual, the "most horrendous of stories" do not always make it into the (national) mainstream media headlines.

BTW, I saw a brief article in a Knoxville TN newspaper that mentioned asking Governor Phil Bredesen how he felt "about being considered by the President for the position of Secretary of Health and Human Services."

So, I figure that the "rumor" was accurate.

Cujo359's picture
Submitted by Cujo359 on

re: Gov. Bredesen being considered for SecHHS, he'd fit right in with all the other candidates. First there was Tom Daschle, who lobbied for just about all the big money interests in health care (rejected due to some funky income tax issue), then Kathleen Sebelius, who figured to change absolutely nothing for the better.

So it wouldn't surprise me if this guy was chosen next.

Alexa's picture
Submitted by Alexa on

I'm afraid that you might be right.

Dems might steer clear due to fear of "blowback," but what's to stop a Republican Administration from recruiting Bredesen for HHS Secretary?

After all, FP Clinton employed the Mark McClellan (Scott McClellan's older brother) who was later FP Bush's Chief of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (not sure the exact title that he held in the Clinton Administration--it can be Googled, I'm sure).

McClellan is both a medical doctor and an economist, IIRC.

Rainbow Girl's picture
Submitted by Rainbow Girl on

Alexa, I mistakenly posted under your Part I. I watched every minute of the video. It's an extraordinary piece of advocacy by documentary. So powerful and so well done. Thank you. The scrolling facts and the end, reporting on the fates of the individuals who spoke during the film and who were among the thousands simply cut out of TennCare were devastating.

Alexa's picture
Submitted by Alexa on

Well, thank you, RG.

I was impressed with DeSousa's ability to so clearly articulate "what happened"--which was especially helpful for those who would have no knowledge of the TennCare debacle--as well as the fact that the TJC chose to actually produce "evidence" of the Administration's malfeasance, by showing some of the Bredesen Administration's memos and emails. Overall, I thought that it was impressive in content.

Without a doubt, the Tennessee Justice Center (TJC) staff, along with the TennCare beneficiaries who spoke in this documentary, and fought mightily to resist this unconscionable action by Governor Phil Bredesen, are unsung heroes.

Alexa's picture
Submitted by Alexa on

Not to say he couldn't be rehabilitated of course.

That's exactly what I'm afraid of--he is very much involved in health care issues, today.

We'll see, I suppose.

Alexa's picture
Submitted by Alexa on

according to one of the reporters on "The Press Pool" yesterday.

There's a problem with calculating subsidies, and the various computers "talking to each other," if I heard it correctly!

I'm not sure how anyone is expected to have any confidence in the Exchange calculations--or at least not initially.

I imagine that there will be at least several more "Exchange Delays," before it all over.

With all the "changes in the law, and last minute delays," it seems to me that the Dems are handing Republicans a bludgeon to beat them over the head with, when it comes to the "sheer incompetence" that this Administration has demonstrated in the implementation of the ACA.

One HuffPo reporter on "The Press Pool" sounded almost frantic as he tried his best to "spin" his piece on the early projected "low enrollment figures" for the ACA.

I'm beginning to believe that Dems should just stay quiet for a while, since they are simply drawing more attention to the weak roll-out effort.

IOW, "Methinks thou dost protest too much" is applicable to the situation that the Administration, and for that matter all Democratic lawmakers find themselves in.

Alexa's picture
Submitted by Alexa on

and one reason that the ACA subsidies were cut-off at such a low income, is that this program NEEDS for millions of working class Americans to not to be able to afford to enroll in it.

I remember seeing a blog comment about this during the so-called "national conversation" about "universal" (which is is not) health insurance. [Mr. A said that PBO and FP Clinton were throwing this rhetoric around earlier this week--disgusting!]

Anyway, the commenter pointed out that the authors of the ACA chose to fund this plan largely through the collection of "tax penalties."

So, I suppose that we cannot realistically look to Dem lawmakers to make these subsidies more generous, much less allow them to be extended up to what I heard was "middle income" during a Congressional hearings in 2011--approximately $60,000 to $65,000 annual income.

To do that, would be to "undo" one of the primary funding mechanisms of the ACA.

Rainbow Girl's picture
Submitted by Rainbow Girl on

" ... this program [in order to "work" for Obama's PR purposes] NEEDS for millions of working class Americans to not to be able to afford to enroll in it."

It's about actuarial value only. Which includes the modest micro-categories (buckets) of people who will benefit -- there's few enough of them that Obama's "partners" who wrote the law (Liz Fowler, with the input of the insurance companies, pharma, et al.) were happy to let Obama falsely claim that tens of millions (now only 7 million, I believe) of otherswould benefit.

I'm now actually beginning to believe that the plan all along was to steer the majority of Americans into the gutted and now almost entirely privatized Medicaid sub-human HMO system whilst putting the key demographic micro-buckets of up-to-26-year-olds and the few other beneficiaries into some form of coverage they did not have (never mind, for the moment if even that coverage becomes too expensive for those favored micro-bucket-people to use).

The Supreme Court's ruling that states could opt out of Medicaid upset the everyone-into-Medicaid apple cart. Leaving Obama with only one prong of his strategy -- the private exchange and subsidy system -- to keep alive the illusion that he was going to do something "really amazing" for the scandalously high number of American citizens unable to afford health care.

Obama is now playing a high-wire act, where it's all about timing to make sure his PR Machine can overwhelm what will become painfully obvious after October 1st -- that the "exchange and subsidies" scheme is a total scam insofar as Obama claims that it will provide affordable health insurance (forget health care) to Americans.

Yes, ObamaCare is viscerally cruel. It is a shocking attack by a government against it's people.