What Time Is It?

According to William Shakespeare, “Brevity is the soul of wit.”

Apparently, Obama and the Democrats are none too familiar with the wisdom of the Bard.

If we would just let the Government take care of our health requirements with the New and Improved Healthcare System known as The Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare), we’ll all be healthier and happier, and our lives will be so much simpler.


How about if we let our all-sensitive and sagacious savior, the Benevolent Bamster himself, tell us.

what-time-is-it‘When the first draft of the application turned out to be a clunker, “immediately, everybody sat around the table and said, `Well, this is too long, especially … in this age of the Internet,'” Obama recounted. “`People aren’t going to have the patience to sit there for hours on end. Let’s streamline this thing.'”

Great. Need that ‘streamlining’ thing to make the Federal Fatherland Fix easy to understand for all us yokels here in fly-over country.

Well, it looks like the ol’ clock up on the wall is ticking away our Freedoms by the minute, so let’s take a look at some of those simplifications, shall we?

H. R. 3590—15

‘‘(1) APPEARANCE.—The standards shall ensure that the summary of benefits and coverage is presented in a uniform format that does not exceed 4 pages in length and does not include print smaller than 12-point font.

‘‘(2) LANGUAGE.—The standards shall ensure that the sum- mary is presented in a culturally and linguistically appropriate manner and utilizes terminology understandable by the average plan enrollee.

‘‘(3) CONTENTS.—The standards shall ensure that the sum- mary of benefits and coverage includes—

‘‘(A) uniform definitions of standard insurance terms and medical terms (consistent with subsection (g)) so that consumers may compare health insurance coverage and understand the terms of coverage (or exception to such coverage);

‘‘(B) a description of the coverage, including cost sharing for—

‘‘(i) each of the categories of the essential health benefits described in subparagraphs (A) through (J) of section 1302(b)(1) of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; and

‘‘(ii) other benefits, as identified by the Secretary; ‘‘(C) the exceptions, reductions, and limitations on cov-

erage; ‘‘(D) the cost-sharing provisions, including deductible,

coinsurance, and co-payment obligations; ‘‘(E) the renewability and continuation of coverage

provisions; ‘‘(F) a coverage facts label that includes examples to

illustrate common benefits scenarios, including pregnancy and serious or chronic medical conditions and related cost sharing, such scenarios to be based on recognized clinical practice guidelines;

‘‘(G) a statement of whether the plan or coverage— ‘‘(i) provides minimum essential coverage (as defined under section 5000A(f) of the Internal Revenue

Code 1986); and ‘‘(ii) ensures that the plan or coverage share of

the total allowed costs of benefits provided under the plan or coverage is not less than 60 percent of such costs; ‘‘(H) a statement that the outline is a summary of policy or certificate and that the coverage document

the itself should be consulted to determine the governing contractual provisions; and

‘‘(I) a contact number for the consumer to call with additional questions and an Internet web address where a copy of the actual individual coverage policy or group certificate of coverage can be reviewed and obtained.

‘‘(c) PERIODIC REVIEW AND UPDATING.—The Secretary shall periodically review and update, as appropriate, the standards devel- oped under this section.

‘‘(d) REQUIREMENT TO PROVIDE.— ‘‘(1) IN GENERAL.—Not later than 24 months after the date

of enactment of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, each entity described in paragraph (3) shall provide, priorH. R. 3590—16

to any enrollment restriction, a summary of benefits and cov- erage explanation pursuant to the standards developed by the Secretary under subsection (a) to—

‘‘(A) an applicant at the time of application;

‘‘(B) an enrollee prior to the time of enrollment or reenrollment, as applicable; and

‘‘(C) a policyholder or certificate holder at the time of issuance of the policy or delivery of the certificate. ‘‘(2) COMPLIANCE.—An entity described in paragraph (3)

is deemed to be in compliance with this section if the summary of benefits and coverage described in subsection (a) is provided in paper or electronic form.

‘‘(3) ENTITIES IN GENERAL.—An entity described in this paragraph is—

‘‘(A) a health insurance issuer (including a group health plan that is not a self-insured plan) offering health insur- ance coverage within the United States; or

‘‘(B) in the case of a self-insured group health plan, the plan sponsor or designated administrator of the plan (as such terms are defined in section 3(16) of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974). ‘‘(4) NOTICE OF MODIFICATIONS.—If a group health plan

or health insurance issuer makes any material modification in any of the terms of the plan or coverage involved (as defined for purposes of section 102 of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974) that is not reflected in the most recently provided summary of benefits and coverage, the plan or issuer shall provide notice of such modification to enrollees not later than 60 days prior to the date on which such modification will become effective.

‘‘(e) PREEMPTION.—The standards developed under subsection (a) shall preempt any related State standards that require a sum- mary of benefits and coverage that provides less information to consumers than that required to be provided under this section, as determined by the Secretary.

‘‘(f) FAILURE TO PROVIDE.—An entity described in subsection (d)(3) that willfully fails to provide the information required under this section shall be subject to a fine of not more than $1,000 for each such failure. Such failure with respect to each enrollee shall constitute a separate offense for purposes of this subsection.

‘‘(g) DEVELOPMENT OF STANDARD DEFINITIONS.— ‘‘(1) IN GENERAL.—The Secretary shall, by regulation, pro-

vide for the development of standards for the definitions of terms used in health insurance coverage, including the insur- ance-related terms described in paragraph (2) and the medical terms described in paragraph (3).

‘‘(2) INSURANCE-RELATED TERMS.—The insurance-related terms described in this paragraph are premium, deductible, co-insurance, co-payment, out-of-pocket limit, preferred pro- vider, non-preferred provider, out-of-network co-payments, UCR (usual, customary and reasonable) fees, excluded services, griev- ance and appeals, and such other terms as the Secretary deter- mines are important to define so that consumers may compare health insurance coverage and understand the terms of their coverage.

This is but a millisecond of the whole monumental thing. I’m not kidding. I don’t think my computer has enough memory to hold the entire bill (just click the link, you’ll see). This bureaucratic behemoth goes on for days!

What time is it?

There are, at last count, around 180 Boards, commissions, and bureaus set up to handle The anointed one’s “streamlined” statism strategy.

I doubt you could turn the pages in one sitting.

Speaking of pages, for a bit of perspective, let’s look at some classic works said to be somewhat vellum-voluptuous.

A Tale of Two Cities is considered a long literary endeavor at 544 pages. War and Peace is even more audacious with approximately 1200 pages. And the granddaddy of them all – at least it was for me – Moby Dick, has a laborious 1,946 pages.

Okay, all you clock-watchers, back to the subject at hand. Here we go. Drum roll please . . . The Democrat’s pet project, a years-long illicit and lurid fantasy, the Healthcare Bill, aka, The Affordable Care Act, aka, ObamaCare, has 2,032 pages between it’s monstrous covers. The ObamaCare Operator’s Manual – that’s THE %$#&! OPERATOR’S MANUAL – has 207 pages alone! Yes, two hundred and seven pages just to tell you how to use the two thousand, thirty-two pages.

Again, the time?

For contrast, let’s take a look at the United States Operator’s Manual, aka, the Founding Documents, aka, the Constitution. How many pages?

Less than 25.

And that’s not just the single document we know as the Constitution, that’s The Constitution, The Declaration of Independence AND The Bill of Rights, all together!

Hundreds and hundreds of pages for a Liberal healthcare program, and under 25 for a nation’s entire governing system.

George Washington, James Madison, and Benjamin Franklin – 25 pages.

Barack Obama, Harry Reid, and Nancy Pelosi – 2,239 pages.

What (THE HELLL!!!) is wrong with this picture?

According to Democrat Max Baucus, “Train Wreck” is one answer. That’s what he said ObamaCare looked like.

Democrat Jay Rockefeller said that the bill is “so complicated” and will “simply get worse” over time if its handlers do not get it right the first time.

Henry Chao, the current head of the ObamaCare insurance exchange program at CMMS, said that the law could devolve into a “third-world experience” if all the pieces to the puzzle are not placed at just the right time.

Wait a minute. The government failing to get things just right? Why, we have the Democrats, the wonderful Barack Obama, the one’s who truly care about people, the one’s telling us they just want to help working families and make things better for all of us. We have them holding the timepiece.

Worry? Pshaw. What’s to worry.

We left worry a several years and two terms ago.

It’s time to panic!


About the Author

Joe Keck is a writer of horror, thriller, suspense, and other fiction, some poetry and music, with the occasional op-ed piece on current events, politics, and theology. Although born in Oklahoma, he was taken to Los Angeles when he was an infant, or as his mother described, "the ugliest little thing I've ever seen", and raised there on the West Coast. He considers himself to be far superior to most on the artistic merits of film and literature, seeing the vast majority of such to be well below adequate. He has four novels and many short stories to his credit, and hopes to one day have them published, promising to hold critics like himself in harsh derision. He's currently restoring a Jason 35 sailboat and plans to sail the world, writing horror stories, and marveling at the illustrative works of the Creator and His Divine story-telling imagery. You may Find Joe's Website at http://www.joekeck.com/

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