Collaborative User Blog



Who Gets Defunded When Medicaid is Reduced

        Every time I hear rhetoric about de-funding or reducing funds to Medicaid, I feel honor bound to pass on this information. Because I'm positive that most people just don't get it. If our legislators don't, they're not doing their jobs. But if they do, they're not telling you. Because no one would be able to defend this.

        When you hear that Medicaid serves people with disabilities, it's important that you understand that it doesn't just mean that it provides medical services for people who are on Supplemental Security Income (Social Security disability) and Public Assistance. That's a lot. But it's just the tip of the iceberg. Many of those experiencing the most severe, complex disabilities count on what's known as Medicaid Waivers to provide them with their daily care, their vocational programs, their day programs. Waivers pay the staff in group homes. They provide respite for families who provide that care at home. They pay job coaches and day habilitation specialists. Many people on Medicaid Waivers are totally dependent on their staff for every activity of daily living. Without someone to cook for them and serve their meals, assist them in bathing and eating and using the toilet, they can not do these things. They need someone to get them in and out of bed and help them dress. They are not safe crossing the street, eating, sleeping, interacting with the world on their own. They need assistance with life; people who can allow them to do the things they can do. These people are not leaches. They did not chose to be disabled. Most of them were born with a one or more disabilities. Many of them have jobs and work harder doing the things they do than the majority of people. How many of us work so hard every day that we have to go home and nap? How many of us love our jobs so much that we are angry if we're given a day off? Is there a law that says you can be paid below minimum wage based on how long it takes you to do your job? Without Medicaid Waivers or even with reduced funding these people, American citizens with every single one of the rights that every other citizen has won't just be inconvenienced. They will suffer. They will die. The idea of people who are dead set against abortion treating living, breathing human beings in this way and pretending they're doing Americans a favor is despicable. If you insist on people being born, you have to deal with them once they're alive, even the ones who aren't so easy or cheap. Why are we increasing the amount of money we use to kill people and decreasing the amount we use to keep them alive if everybody's so damn pro life?

Submitted by Sue.

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Making sense of things

I found myself playing advice columnist on FB this morning and thought I'd share.

My friend's post:
I've been divorced for 15 years now and once in a blue moon I miss having that person to help me figure out how to make sense of all these big issues going on. It's tough when you don't have someone you know you can depend on for good advice. I know I'll figure it out. I just wish I had what is known as "my person" as this is so much to do own my own. I really want to get it right. Oh well....

My Response:
Annie, you're right. But the truth is that sometimes your significant other isn't any better equipped to do that than you are, even less, and it doesn't detract from the relationship. Your 'one person' you can discuss and make sense of such things with doesn't have to be the same person. It just needs to be someone with common sense who cares about you and you trust, a friend, a relative, spiritual advisor, whoever. I get that your ex was that person, but there are others out there. Assuming you left that relationship for a reason and that you're not still close enough to have kept that part, I'd suggest finding a group, online or off, that's a safe place where you can talk about things and get some input.

Part of my concern for this person stems from the fact that, even after a break-up and fifteen years time, she didn't feel she had anyone to help her figure things out, and that her response to that was to think of her ex. But I think a lot of people are having this feeling of isolation lately. The times we're living in seem so random and threatening. My friend's post made me realize how lucky I am to have people I can discuss my feelings with, ask my questions of, vent my frustrations around. People under-estimate the value of communicating thoughts and feelings. It isn't even necessary that your audience be wiser. What's important is that you trust them enough to tell them. Because putting those thoughts and feelings into words, whether aloud or as we do here, stimulates thought and solidifies the ones you're already having. Sometimes all it takes to really understand something is to communicate it. Sometimes just doing that takes the pressure of having a worry nagging at you away, whether you find an answer or not. It puts things in perspective. No matter how much we all know that there's no benefit to worry past the point of ensuring that we've done all we can to be prepared for eventualities, it's a hard thing to learn to let go. Like so many things in life, declining to worry about things we can't control is far more easily said than done. The key that many people miss is that it's easier to let go of a worry or a niggle or a fear once we've taken it out of our own heads, where it spins in a circle, forming and ever deepening rut, if we share it and get some new input that can help us dig out and carry on.

Submitted unsigned.

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A little ignorance is a dangerous thing

        I just had a conversation with a friend who carefully explained to me that she had just read a 'news' story that said our economy is crashing. It said that the reason the value of the dollar was going down was that much or our cash, trillions of dollars, was in the hands of foreign nationals who were using it to trade, not with us, but with one another. She went on to say that the United States doesn't have enough money to cover the amount U. S. citizens have in the bank and that the way to test this was to go to the bank and ask for $5,000 in cash and see what happens. The proof? You would be asked to fill out a form. They would tell you they didn't have that much cash available and would have to get some from other branches.
       By this time I was sputtering, waiting for her to finish before I forgot one of the points that was setting off my OMG! reflex. She went on to say that 'he', whoever he was (this apparently came from some internet 'news' site that she gets on her phone.) , had displayed charts that showed it all very clearly and helped her to understand. I couldn't help it, I hollered, 'wait, wait, wait!' Then went on to explain with a great deal of vehemence that it sounds as if this person is trying to start a run on the banks like happened at the beginning of the depression and besides, what he said wasn't true. If the dollar was worthless, which was the contention, people in other countries wouldn't be using it. And, more to the point, the idea that having our money in use in other countries caused its value to go down was completely and utterly false. They wouldn't use it if that was how it worked. Why would people conduct business in worthless currency? They use it because people trust it. And the monetary market is international, so it doesn't matter what country the money is used in or by whom. It has nothing to do with the value of the monetary unit. I said that the reason you have to fill out a form and there isn't enough cash in the bank is because:
        We have laws in place to prevent people from crashing banks like they did in the past.
        No one uses cash anymore, which does not mean they don't have money.
        The IRS wants to know when people are using large amounts of cash because most of the time whatever transaction they're about to make is not legal.

        Then I went on to explain that charts and statistics can be made to show whatever you want them to show by cherry-picking, misinterpreting and downright lying. Just because someone made a chart doesn't mean it contains facts. I explained that the number of physical bills you can lay your hands on has nothing to do with how much money you, or I or the United States of America have and that the reason there's no cash around is because people don't use it. Checks and cards are safer and more convenient. And surely she didn't think big corporations carted around huge truckloads of money when they made major transactions.

        Then I stopped. Could I explain that money is not paper, it's an idea and that it (like stocks on the market) is worth what people think it's worth, which is why loss of confidence reduces value? Could I make her see that the 'story' she had read was a self-fulfilling prophecy, probably deliberately so? Based on the fact that she was still standing there with someone's hook, line and sinker hanging out of her mouth? No.

Submitted unsigned.

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