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FormerRepublican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 02:11 PM
Original message
How far will the attacks on the poor and disabled actually go?
I live in Utah, the most revoltingly Republican state in the country. The attitude here toward the poor and disabled is nothing short of revolting. Personally, I wouldn't put it past them to actually kill people who fall into those two categories. Why do I feel that way? Because I am a Social Security Disability recipient who has first hand experience.

An example. When you're on Social Security Disability, they don't give you Medicare for 2 years after your SSDI payments start. By law, they have to give you Medicaid in the interim. In my case, I have Medicaid spenddown, and must pay $336 per month to get Medicaid. They only let you keep $700 to live on (note that rent alone is almost that much). You can't get foodstamps because you make too much money (even though the government is taking back most of it). If you get help from family or friends to pay the bills, they count it as income and up your spend-down. If you don't report the help you get from family or friends, they charge you with fraud. If you don't pay the spend-down every month, they close your Medicaid case. So, because I couldn't afford to pay for Medicaid (which DOESN'T pay for everything, by the way), they closed my case. Last month I had an emergency and ended up in the emergency room. The ER doc referred me to another doctor for follow up care since I will likely require surgery. The follow-up doc won't see me unless my Medicaid is already in place. Medicaid will take more than 45 days to reopen the case - even in an emergency. Now, even if I pay the $336 per month, I will still have ADDITIONAL medical expenses to pay. And because Medicaid forces you to pay the $336 per month or be cancelled, there's no way to manage it so you only pay when you use it. They're forcing you to pay when you have no medical expenses (a scam, IMO). In addition, if you want to see the doctor and pay cash, then use the bill to offset the medicaid spenddown, the doctor still won't see you because they demand TOTAL payment at the time services are delivered. So, for example, if you need surgery, you would have to pay the ENTIRE surgery bill in cash before you could leave the Dr office or they won't see you. And they can't/won't tell you how much the bill will be in advance.

In addition, Medicaid puts you into a plan that's kind of like an HMO. So, I went to the Instacare for the plan I had, but they wouldn't see me and told me to go to the Emergency Room at the hospital (which is in another plan). So I did. Now Medicaid is saying I can't use that hospital because it's not in my plan. So, in effect, your plan practices patient dumping because you have Medicaid and forces you to go to another provider outside your plan, and then Medicaid doesn't want to pay. Another scam, IMO.

Every doctor in Utah I've talked to has this cash or already in Medicaid policy. I've given up on both Medicaid and any hopes of having my medical issues treated. To be honest, I went online to an offshore pharmacy and ordered drugs without a prescription to help control the problem. I will likely not get the surgery I need. I could have cancer, although I'm hoping that chance is low. It may have serious detrimental effects on my long term health, but I have no other choices. Don't kid yourselves - Medicaid is non-existant and even those who qualify seldom get care. And Republicans want to cut this? What's left to cut?

I am treated as a second class citizen because I am disabled. There are so many stories I could tell about how I have been treated by the state - like taking more than 3 months to approve food stamps while I was waiting for SSDI, and the FEDS finally approved it when I applied for food stamps during my SSDI process and bypassed the state after 3 months of waiting. Don't even get me started on how the state handles work requirements for the seriously disabled who CAN'T work. No effort whatsoever is made to accomodate my disability. Reporting the problem to the state agency charged with investigating discrimination is nothing more than leaving your name and telephone number, and no one bothers to ever return the call.

Considering the fact that I paid a LOT of money into Social Security over the years before I ever applied for SSDI, I find the whole environment here revolting. I used to pay $10,000 per year in taxes. Now, when I need something back from them, they want to beat me to a pulp. No one is safe from this since anyone can become disabled and lose everything and be forced to rely on government programs. I learned that the hard way.

I have seriously wondered if the next step is actually killing the poor and disabled. No joke. That's how bad it is.

My question to you is - how far do you think this will go? Is there any hope for those of us who are suffering under this mis-administration? Would there be any outcry if Bush and his minions really did start lining us up for the firing squad?

After Katrina, those questions don't seem so crazy anymore.

And for those of you in the know - what's the best state for the disabled to live in? I really, REALLY want to move out of this state!

The US IS a third world country, and Bush and his minions have made it so!
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whatever4 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 02:18 PM
Response to Original message
1. I nominated your post. That was impassioned. nm
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400Years Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 02:18 PM
Response to Original message
2. I think hawaii has pretty good state benefits
Edited on Wed Oct-19-05 02:19 PM by 400Years
from what I hear, no personal experience.

Kill the poor? They've been doing that for years,
that is how the 3rd world became so.
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DBoon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 02:22 PM
Response to Reply #2
4. Begging on street corners
the sorts of things that used to shock Americans about the developing world will soon become a fact of our everyday lives.
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dajoki Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 02:21 PM
Response to Original message
3. i went through it in PA...
along with worker's comp. and it's hard to believe what they can get away with until it happens to you. GOOD LUCK!!
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papau Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 02:22 PM
Response to Original message
5. I'm really sorry to hear how rough your experience has been in Utah.
I believe you are proof, sadly, that the theory of replacing government benefits with voluntary charity does not work - at least in Utah.

Each State has it's own Medicaid Rules, but Medicare should be the same everywhere.

If your GOP Congressman has a heart, his office should try to help you.

Good luck.

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FormerRepublican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 02:25 PM
Response to Reply #5
7. Oh, I called Orrin Hatch's office when I was going through all this...
I asked his aide if they were going to start executing the disabled next. She said she'd press the button.

Needless to say, there is no help to be found in Utah's Congressional delegation. I hold them in the highest contempt.
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txaslftist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 02:56 PM
Response to Reply #7
11. She said WHAT?
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FormerRepublican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 03:22 PM
Response to Reply #11
16. No lie. That's exactly what she said. I was livid.
Needless to say, I won't be voting for Orrin Hatch in the next election. But, with this state revoltingly Republican, he'll probably be re-elected anyway.
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ayeshahaqqiqa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 02:23 PM
Response to Original message
6. Sadly, yes
My doctor has a neat plan in that she lets people pay out their bills-and not just in money. In fact, if someone who owes her money volunteers at another non-profit, they can bring a slip from that organization, and the doc takes it off their bill. She also has laboratory assistance grants for uninsured and underinsured people. If they don't have the money and really need the labs, the grants pay for them. She's had problems with Medicare and Medicaid too-neither wanting to pay her for her services. (Her foundation is non-profit, and she'll see people no matter what, but not getting funds from the government that she has earned does rankle-it means donations to help for lab grants, etc, are stretched thinner than they need to be.)

I hope that you are able to find out what is wrong and are able to get it fixed. There is hope. My husband was diagnosed with Hepatitus C and has been basically cured (liver functions back to normal) because of this doctor and her integrative medical practice, so I'm a bit prejudiced.
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zalinda Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 02:33 PM
Response to Reply #6
8. Tell me more about the hep C
my son is going to be treated for that. I sometimes feel so sorry for him. First it was his eyes, which has thrown a huge wrench into his life and now, it's hep C.

zalinda
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ayeshahaqqiqa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 05:17 PM
Response to Reply #8
22. My MD is a holistic physician
She's an MD, but she uses diet, supplements, herbs, various therapies to help people. She really believes in doing a lot of testing to see what is going on in the body. During the time my husband was taking Vitamin C/alpha limpoic acid IVs twice a week, she monitored his liver functions closely. They were improving slowly until she added a blend of herbs to his regamine, when liver functions improved dramatically.

She is herself a cancer survivor, and believes in helping people using the least invasive form of therapy. Her goal is to get people WELL, and not just to treat symptoms. Besides treating Hep C patients, she works a lot with autistic kids, using the latest therapies.

Anyone who is interested in finding out more about this doctor and how she does things, check out her website at: http://www.futurevisionsfoundation.org

And be kind about the webpage layouts-I did it for her in trade for medical services!
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wiley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 11:34 PM
Response to Reply #8
23. Some Resources
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KT2000 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 02:46 PM
Response to Original message
9. Nominated because
people do not really understand what is going on.
I think they are already killing the sick and disabled by denying access to healthcare. They call it other things but the result is the result.

There used to be a value of compassion in this country but the resentful have taken over. But some do not even realize what is really going on, so your post is so important. Thank you for writing it.
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indepat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 02:51 PM
Response to Original message
10. The attack on the poor and disabled will go as far as it takes to get the
job done.
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calmblueocean Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 03:03 PM
Response to Original message
12. I just wanted to say
...that stories like yours make me feel strongly that Democrats should begin a new imperative to make government more efficient. There's no reason you should have to wait 45 days for your Medicaid to be reopened, or more than 3 months for food stamp approval. Why should we accept that?

One of the ways we should turn traditional criticism of liberals on its head is by demanding speedier, more efficient government. We should havea plan to implement standards, incentives, and practices that reward frugality, speed, and accuracy throughout the federal government. Republicans only want to end government services. We want to make them work better.
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area51 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 03:09 PM
Response to Original message
13. God this burns me up.
This is along w/what I've said on other threads; in that when you need help from the govt. (like in the case of Katrina, or in the case of the O.P.), you're getting tax money that you paid back! Truly, the nazi party loves it when people die due to needed medical care. We need our tax $ to go for universal healthcare now.
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Ladyhawk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 03:17 PM
Response to Original message
14. Dear Friend, I totally understand where you are coming from.
I, too, must live on SSDI. Here in California, we get Medi-Cal. It's "poor folks' insurance." The first time I needed an MRI, it took Medi-Cal six months to approve it. The second time I needed an MRI, it took Medi-Cal a full year to approve it, even though the previous MRI showed I might need surgery. I languished in pain during that time and it's quite possible my surgery would have been more successful had it been performed earlier.

As it is, I have nerve damage in my arm and hand. Luckily, it is only sensation and doesn't affect my ability to move, grip, etc. still, it's annoying to have only partial sensation in my thumb, forefinger, forearm, etc. The severity of the symptoms changes day by day.

I could give you a long list of Medi-Cal bloopers and blunders. Indeed, Medi-Cal's disregard for me as a person is probably one of the ingredients that finally made me a progressive, for I, like you, am a former Republican. What a shock to find out the Republicans only care about you while you're healthy and wealthy, eh? I don't think they cared even then. :(

If it makes any difference, I care. I care a lot.

Would you like to move to Hawaii with me? :D

:pals: :hug: :pals:
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FormerRepublican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 04:08 PM
Response to Reply #14
19. The change in our country over the past few years is absolutely breath-
taking in it's total reversal. I'm still reeling in shock over how people are now treated. It wasn't always that way. They used to try to help the disabled become employed, and they used to get really aggressive with employers who discriminated. No more. Now they're trying to completely reverse the ADA. A lot of us will suffer because of it. One of the reasons I'm now on SSDI is that my employer refused to accomodate and the gov't refused to make them. So, I now collect a government check instead of working.

I would love to move to Hawaii with you (too bad I don't have the money!)!

:pals: :hug: :loveya:

I'll spend some time daydreaming about Hawaii instead. :rofl:



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Patiod Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 03:22 PM
Response to Original message
15. Doesn't everyone in Utah tithe 10% to the LDS?
They must be breath-takingly rich.

Don't they offer services - food cupboards, job aid, etc?
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FormerRepublican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 03:39 PM
Response to Reply #15
17. I actually would not have survived the application for SSDI without them.
They gave me money, but not without a LOT of convincing and waiting months.

I was born LDS. I'm grateful for the help they gave me while I was waiting to receive SSDI. I'm paying them back so they can help others. But the LDS church is the most influential organization in this state bar none. After what I've experienced, my opinion of the church has seriously gone down. Why? Because no ethical religious organization would support what's happening in this state, or encourage their members to continue to support political ideology that causes so much unnecessary suffering. IMO, there is no excuse, and I believe one day they (church leaders) will be held accountable. I feel the same way about other religious organizations who support these attacks on the most vulnerable of society. It's certainly not Christian by any stretch, and I have no respect for supposed Christians who support it.

The situtation in this state is so bad that Church leaders had to change the way money was used for charitable purposes in the Church because members from third world countries were having their money redirected to Utah to assist members in this state because people here are unwilling to help each other. How messed up is that? And it's entirely due to the screwed up political ideology these people believe in.

I've lived in other states. I've been disabled all my life (and WORKED for YEARS! Another thing these stupidos conveniently overlook). This state, by far, has absolutely treated me the worst at every level than I have ever experienced anywhere. I hold them in total contempt.

I dream of being able to leave and live somewhere else some day...
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Rainbowreflect Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 03:54 PM
Response to Original message
18. This makes me so sad. My husband is in the process of applying
for SSD, he has Muscular Dystrophy. We are lucky because I have a pretty good job with not only slightly expensive health insurance.
I know their are way too many people, such as yourself, that have to go through hell.
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undergroundpanther Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 04:35 PM
Response to Reply #18
20. Until someone
get the rich pigs and threaten them in a way that MATTERS to them..AS long as we believe and protect the opulent and let them hoard they will rob us.Most so called leaders have no conscience and the others who could help don't because they are permitted to live in bubbles where poverty and desperation is a myth. They will push until we roll over and die or we Crash the gated communities,Until we bring this class war into their lives they will pillage the social safety net so they NEVER lack in comforts they want.
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Rainbowreflect Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-20-05 09:34 AM
Response to Reply #20
25. I emailed my representative yesterday pointing out his hypocrisy
in calling himself a Christian while behaving opposite of Christ's teaching by his votes.
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indigo32 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 04:44 PM
Response to Original message
21. thank you
for making so clear the reality of what these policies do
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Solon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-20-05 08:20 AM
Response to Original message
24. Until there's a revolution...
Your story is not unusual, and yet, no matter how many times I read about ones similar to yours, its heart wrenching, and makes me angry. I seriously believe that unless we have RADICAL reform soon, there will be a revolution in this country. People can only take so much, with the destruction of the middle class, and the raping of the poor, we the people will not tolerate it much longer. Its a historical precendent that when the rich screw the poor, the poor turn around and kill the rich by any means possible. We almost had it happen during the presidency of Hoover, but Roosevelt came in, and understood that steps had to be taken to ease the suffering of the people, or the people will cause the rich to suffer in turn. He defused the situation, and we should all be thankful for that. Now we are in the Hoover the sequel presidency, and the question is, where is our Roosevelt?
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