When I watched President Obama’s State of the Union Address this week, I listened with a somewhat biased mind – biased toward the protection of my happy, healthy, financially-secure life. I often describe my political leanings as “Financially Conservative and Socially Liberal”. I am wary of government waste and free-spending that drive taxes higher without long-term benefit for the majority of U.S. residents. And, honestly, after working since the age of 15 (sometimes 7 days a week at 2 jobs), paying off my student loans, working a high-stress corporate job that infringed on my personal life for years, paying taxes at a pretty high rate, and never once having to file for unemployment – I strongly believe I have earned the right to protect the life I have built!
There were two statements from the SOTU Address that spoke directly to me:
“What I’m not willing to do is go back to the days when insurance companies could deny someone coverage because of a preexisting condition. “
Now that we are no longer covered by a corporate-subsidized health insurance program, Ron and I pay for our own individual health insurance. Although I consider myself to be pretty healthy now, my history as a colon cancer-survivor, among other minor managed conditions (like high cholesterol), are problematic. My application for individual coverage was denied, and I was only able to obtain coverage because Illinois has a government-subsidized program for “high risk” candidates. I pay $700 a month for insurance, and have a $2500 annual deductable. Arizona has no such program (until ObamaCare kicks in fully in 2014), so I don’t know what we will do for my health insurance when we move in 2012. We may only be able to obtain Catastrophic coverage. It’s a crap shoot, and it makes me angry.
“To put us on solid ground, we should also find a bipartisan solution to strengthen Social Security for future generations. We must do it without putting at risk current retirees, the most vulnerable, or people with disabilities; without slashing benefits for future generations; and without subjecting Americans’ guaranteed retirement income to the whims of the stock market.”