I found out today that the company that I was laid off from last July is going out of business at the end of this month… While that sucks for the 3 people who still work there… it is also terrible for all of us that have been laid off since last July… Why? Because those of us who have been able to have health insurance through COBRA will lose our coverage at the end of this month.
I actually called the COBRA office at the Department of Labor and was told that indeed COBRA ends when the business closes. To add salt to the wound…sorry bad pun… The stimulus package COBRA subsidy that was making my coverage affordable will also end when the company goes out of business. No business, no COBRA, no subsidy.
I was told by the Department of Labor representative, who was very nice and actually sympathetic, that I have to buy individual insurance on the open market.
I did a quick Google search and discovered that for me, a forty something healthy male, the Empire Blue Cross Direct HMO plan that I now have will cost $1276.00. for an individual. For me and my two children it will cost $2210.00.
I am getting $430.00 a week from unemployment insurance. I am thinking that if I live in a tent, eat roadkill, and make a few more adjustments to my lifestyle, including taking up bank robbery, and selling dope, if I do all of that, I’ll still be about $ 800.00 a month short of coverage.
Lucky for me, I saw this coming so I was able to apply for coverage for my children through a State program for people who can’t afford coverage any other way. My children were accepted and are covered… so at least when I lay my head down on my pillow made of leaves in my tent in the woods, at least then I will be able to sleep peacefully.
How did I get here? Well… I am not sure… I went to college, grad school earned a Masters Degree… went to work, went back to grad school, got another Masters Degree, kept on working… seems good on paper… I should be OK… maybe not set for life, but hanging in there…
But in this new bizarre world we are now inhabiting, I am at fault. I didn’t make the Major Leagues, or star in a block buster, or join the armed forces… I didn’t run for public office or join the civil service or work for an investment bank. I am flotsam … in the castoff sea.
So I am going to join the 40 million other Americans who are uninsured… this is absolutely crazy. How can we stand for this as a Nation? Fuck it who care… American Idol is on and that red haired kid in the Olympics is a multimillionaire…
My favorite thing to do… not really… is to listen to seniors babble on about how the country can’t afford health care reform… the deficit is out of control…. all of a sudden…. they babble on while they cash their Social Security Check and are secure in the knowledge that their health needs are being covered under Medicare. What a bunch of hypocrites…. did I mention I blame the baby boomers for all of our ills?
That is my wrant for today… fuck you tea baggers….and baby boomers…