Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Room For Rant

obama, obama jokes, political, humor, cartoon, conservative, hope n' change, hope and change, stilton jarlsberg, obamacare, health insurance,
Quick! Get this man pain-killers instead of a pacemaker!
There are reports that Obamacare reform may be one of the first things addressed after President-elect Trump is sworn in ("Nuke it from orbit," he may say, "it's the only way to be sure") and we're certainly hoping it's true. Because it's "renewal time" which we mean not only renewing our health insurance, but renewing our hatred and disgust with the whole furshlugginer process.

Currently, we are receiving multiple email and telephone messages daily warning that our access to health insurance will be cut off soon unless we provide a host of documents to prove what our income will be in 2017. Documents which are pretty freaking hard to come by for self-employed cartoonists and gadabout authors.

Adding to the fun, we have to change policies because Mrs. Jarlsberg has just started Medicare. Interestingly, taking one person off a two-person policy costs you 75% of your subsidy. Because, according to, "screw you."

And speaking of Medicare, we just got a letter that Mrs. Jarlsberg's rates are being doubled before her first day of coverage because the same government which says they lack enough information about our income has simultaneously decided that we have an income of several hundred thousand dollars a year. A number which is only off by several hundred thousand dollars. And not in a good way.

But wait! There's more! The majority of policies being offered to us have only "restricted area" coverage - meaning if we're more than 50 miles from our north Texas home when our car is hit head on (perhaps by an angry young Muslim hoping to get eternal boning privileges in return for killing aging infidels) that we're not insured.

But at least if we stay home, we'll have coverage - right? Not necessarily. Because it turns out that in a medical emergency (say, an aneurysm which explodes violently while waiting for the electoral college to finally take their damn vote) you may be taken to a hospital that accepts your insurance, but there's no guarantee that the doctors who see you will accept your insurance. So again, no matter how much you're spending on premiums, you're not necessarily insured.

On a closing note, now that Texans are only offered HMO plans which funnel all medical treatment through a "gateway" doctor (and not the one Obama promised you could keep), we recently had our first visit with our assigned Personal Care Physician. We had intended it only as a friendly meet and greet, but for some reason, after only a brief conversation, the doctor wrote us a prescription for a powerful anti-anxiety medication and suggested that we fill it as soon as possible.

Which struck us as being the first and only thing about Obamacare which has been useful so far.

Darn right she's getting champagne. She's earned it!


drjim said...

Well Happy Birthday, Mrs. J!

AmyH said...

Happy Birthday Mrs. Jarlsberg!

JRMD from Virginia said...

Wishing Mrs. Jarlsberg a very happy birthday.

james daily said...

Happy Birthday Mrs Jarlsberg. May all the best come your way.

gwhdad in houtx said...

Happy Birthday, Mrs. J!!
Dr. J , I know you've seen the statement on medicine bottles advising that consumption of alcohol might cause stronger reactions to the med. I was never quite sure if that was a warning or a suggestion. at any rate , I'm having difficulty trying to convince myself that Obamacare/Affordable Care Act is a good thing. A lib friend seems to think it is. my comment was on the line of "if it was all that good, why the penalties for not signing up?"

Judi King said...

Happy Birthday Mrs J. Good luck with Medicare!

Bobo the Hobo said...

Happy birthday, Mrs J! (You're a lucky guy, Stilt)

Here is to the hope that January 20, 2017 newly-sworn in President Trump and the Republicans finally drive a stake through the what is laughingly referred to as the heart of Obamacare.

Geoff King said...

Feliz cumpleaños Señora J!
Sorry, just practicing to become an illegal alien for the free health care.

Rod said...

We don't know Mrs. Jarlsberg but I envision a patient, loving, guardian angel & advisor who does pretty well at keeping her comic genius inside the lines. Well; maybe not always inside the lines; but inside the stadium. Happy Birthday Dear.

TrickyRicky said...

First and foremost, Happy Birthday to Mrs. Jarlsberg, and many more!
Since I will become involuntarily terminated from my job in two days, and my employer is generously keeping me and my (much) better half covered for six months, I suppose I can look forward to experiencing the trials and tribulations attached to signing up for the Affordable Care Act (severely ironic name BTW), which you have enumerated in horrifying detail, sometime next summer. I therefore sincerely hope that Trump sticks to his stated intention of attacking this monstrosity on day one of his administration. Of course the Congress critters of all stripes will be an obstacle....Sigh.

Chuck Baker (Macon) said...

Happy Birthday, Mrs. Jarlsberg. And I agree with what @Rod said.

Doc said...

Things would certainly be a lot easier if the RECTOIDS in D.C. had to deal with all the excreta they, themselves, force you. Mrs. J and all the other kind souls are forced to tolerate! TERM LIMITS & MASS RECALLS should help take out the GARBAGE!!!!

Boligat said...

Happy Birthday! Mrs. J.

Wow! "Furshlugginer" Haven't heard that word in years.

Agree with Dr. Roger Harris. Any time you see that Congress and the Executive branch are exempt from any particular law, you just know that the law is intended to screw the rest of us. How about we make Congress have to get their healthcare through the VA. Make them go to a specified clinic, but rotate the clinics so they won't know which one to use until just before they have to go.

Fred Ciampi said...

Happy Birthday Mrs. J. And 'what they all said above' plus nice to see something from Walt Kelly again. And, perhaps some good news; Carrier announced that they will be staying in the good old U.S. of A. after all! And as far as 0'boner care (get the reference? Snerk), I do pray for you and Mrs. J that you can get through the morass and then get back to the sanity of how it used to be. I guess that I am lucky that I and wifey (who turned 80 the other day) were able to get into medisomething before the big 0'booboob debacle. Otherwise I would have had to depend on the VA for my medical (lack of) care and she would have had to spend four years in the Marines so that she would qualify for the VA. And now, with a sane president on the horizon I can cut back on the moonshine. OohRah!!!!!!!!!!!!! Try to have a nice day.

james daily said...

IF PE Trump really wants to get rid of this fiasco, pass a law that Congress has to use the same coverage as we peons. They could give a, uh, fig about us. Until the playing field is leveled, we be skrued. I copied you comments and sent it to about a dozen of my pals, all over the U.S. so they could see the gauntlet a person has to go thru for crappy coverage. Secondly, it is BS that immigrants and illegal immigrants get a pass when we that are paying the freight for them also get hammered. In addition if congress had to live under the same laws as we peons, they might do a better job.

Dusty said...

Happy Birthday, Mrs. Jarlsberg!

I would say it's just unbelievable what they're putting you through, but as you know all too well, it's just the new reality in 0bamaland. For the first time in many years, I am also on anti-anxiety meds, and for similar reasons. Counting the days until January 20. Hang in there.

Sortahwitte said...

My wife sioux and I are retired and on medicare with a supplemental policy. So far, we are able to afford it and it's charges. Years ago, when I still was working, I took a little pill with the name of wellbutrin. It seemed to make the sun a little brighter on some days. After retirement, every day was brighter all by itself. At my latest checkup, my most recent and much younger doctor discussed putting me on wellbutrin xl. He said from our discussion, he thought I might need a little tuning up. Tuning up? WTF? I then asked if this xl was with the bucket seats and floor shift or was it the one with the 42 inch waist in my underwear? He then looked me in the eye, then looked down and wrote the scrip. Sometimes young doctors have no sense of humor or a sense of history.

Best birthday wishes to Mrs.J! And many more.

rickn8or said...

Happy Birtday Mrs. J!

John the Econ said...

@Stilton's experiences with ObamaCare makes one of these two conjectures painfully true:

A) The people who designed ObamaCare do not have a freaking clue as to how anybody other than themselves live their lives. They exclusively live in a world where their employers make all the big decisions for them, and simply deduct the cost from their paycheck. I really seems as though it's written by a bunch of single 20-somethings just out of school who think they know everything, and yet know practically nothing. In fact, this is probably the case. So the idea that there may be people out there who are middle class and yet don't get bi-weekly checks who might be married to someone who is either younger or older than themselves is completely foreign to them.

B) ObamaCare was specifically designed to torture and punish self-employed middle-class Americans who are used to conducting their own affairs and take pride in doing so.

I'll let you decide which possibility is the worse of the two. Either way, it's just another preview of what socialism has in store for you if you haven't yet been fully assimilated.

Congratulations, @Stilton on your new-found wealth. The government thinks it, so it must be true.

As for the increasing-decreasing level of coverage you are getting for your increasing premiums, I'm honestly starting to wonder what the point is. It really looks like you are getting closer to the point where having this wonderful insurance actually may be more expensive than the disaster it's supposed to mitigate. It's no wonder ObamaCare is going down the adverse selection black hole.

And since you brought up "eternal boning privileges":

"Last month, when the battle for Mosul began, Islamic State “caliph” Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi reportedly promised four extra Houris (supernatural, celestial women designed for sexual purposes)—atop the other 72 promised by prophet Muhammad—to all jihadis who die fighting the infidel forces"

Because if you're on the fence as to if inevitably dying in glorious martyrdom for an eternity of boning a mere 72 virgins is really worth it, being promised an additional 4 should be just enough to push you to the other side.

And Happy Birthday Mrs. J: And bless you for being the backstop that keeps Mr. J sane and functioning.

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Readers- Thank you for all the birthday wishes for Mrs. J! To celebrate this milestone birthday, we're going to lunch at McDonald's with a friend today and - owing to the special occasion - she's free to order a Filet-O-Fish rather than be restricted to the dollar menu. I'm just a crazy spendthrift that way.

Regarding the health insurance woes, I really need to make one thing quite clear: although I'm honked off and thoroughly enjoyed venting today (well, every day), the people who really have problems are the ones with medical conditions that they have to cope with. I'm getting hit in the wallet, but I'm lucky enough to be in good health and that's no small thing. I'd rather have a frustrating time getting health insurance I don't need than having easy access to health insurance accompanied by serious health issues.

And now some individual comments...

@gwhdad in houtx- I'm sure Obamacare is good for some people, but I'm convinced it's harmful to more people...and to the healthcare system in general.

@Rod- You've described Mrs. J quite accurately. I'm a lucky guy.

@TrickyRicky- Sorry to hear about the job loss! And yes, I hope that your 6 month grace period of insurance will see you through to saner times.

@Dr. Roger Harris- And let me add that a GREAT thing for the GOP to do immediately is create laws that say our elected representatives have to live under the same laws and regulations as the rest of us. I also believe they should be forced to do their own taxes without help. That should keep them out of trouble for a month or two.

@Boligat- "Furshlugginer" is Yiddish, but I learned it (and much else) from MAD Magazine decades ago. I'm looking forward to using "potrzebie" in the near future. And wow- I love, love, love the idea of requiring lawmakers to get their healthcare through the VA. That's another great "day one" move I'd like to see Trump make!

@Fred Ciampi- Wait, Walt Kelly? I don't think I made such a reference, though it's possible. My language and psyche are infused with the words and wisdom of Kelly. Glad to hear you can cut back on the moonshine, too - that means you'll have more for gifting (grin).

@James Daily- I, too, have a problem with the illegals who go to the head of the line for taxpayer-funded services. I believe it's not a side effect of Obama's "come on in" policies, but it's actually the driver of those policies. To expedite socialism and redistribution of wealth, it's necessary to get as many leeches into the system as possible.

@Annie- As I said above, I don't want to overstate what we're going through. We've got multiple pains in the rear end from bureaucratic idiocy, but others would be delighted if those were their only problems. And there's no question that I'll make it until January 20 - I'm taking anti-anxiety meds, anti-depressants, tranquilizers, blood pressure meds, and washing them down with cheap scotch. As of January 21st, I should be able to reduce all of that to a baby aspirin. And cheap scotch.

Fred Ciampi said...

Stilt, I actually made a boo boo ... if anyone can believe that! I was thinking that Furshlugginer was from dear old Walt. So I pulled out my dusty very old stack of Mad mags and sure 'nuff ........ I am a such fan of Walt and Alfred E that I get the two confused. Easy to do at my age. (I'm over 40 BTW). And, I wonder if there will be any refunds for all of the over-payment to o'bozocare.....

Judi King said...

Do the female suicidal jihadis get 72 virgins, too???? Just asking.
I would dump my Medicare supplement (Medigap) if I didn't have pre-existing conditions that could potentially wipe me out financially.

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Sortahwitte- I have the same problem with doctors these days. I try to make some jokes in the office (that's my reflexive behavior when stressed), but usually it only causes the doctor to give a thin smile then scribble something down in his notes, like "should be institutionalized."

@John the Econ- It really does seem that the same bureaucrats who want to "normalize" every conceivable lifestyle and gender identification choice can't imagine - or tolerate - someone who is self-employed and attempting to be self-sufficient.

Regarding my sudden magical "wealth," this relates to an incident I documented here a couple of years ago. In not my smartest act of self-sufficiency, I tried to move my tax-protected retirement savings from one spot in my portfolio to another. It was easy as a mouse-click...after which I realized I'd actually just sold the stocks (which was my intent) and getting the cash (most certainly NOT my intent).

Every cent of that money suddenly showed up as "income" for the year, putting me into Obama's "millionaires and billionaires" club. It not only cost me about $50k in taxes but also forced me to pay a $10k reimbursement for my Obamacare subsidy, and now is being used as the government's cudgel to double the price of Mrs. J's medicare and refuse to believe my documentation of real income.

And the news item about getting a 4 virgin bonus for self-destruction is hilarious. If 76 is better than 72, does that mean they're admitting that "only" 72 would get boring after awhile? If anything, it's only good news for the virgins in that each one will get pestered (so to speak) less often.

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Fred Ciampi- Outside of what I got from my parents, the holy trinity of formative elements in my sense of humor are surely MAD Magazine, Walt Kelly, and early Warner Brothers cartoons.

@Judi King- I forget where I read it, but apparently if a female jihadi blows herself up, her husband gets the 72 virgins. And the last laugh.

Sortahwitte said...

Last summer, for my birthday, my family gave me three classics of the small possum. Pogo, I Go Pogo, and The Pogo Papers. They should be a great inspiration to all Americans. They are better than several civics courses I took in high school and college. I have previously read all I could put my hands on, but these are mine, Mine, MINE. I keep them in the safe.
Walt Kelly, my hero.

John the Econ said...

@Judi King asks:

"Do the female suicidal jihadis get 72 virgins, too????"

I've often asked myself that, especially now that more women are doing the martyr thing. The answer might surprise you - from the same article above:

A woman called in expressing outrage at the Houris, saying that she would be driven “mad with jealousy” seeing her husband copulating with these supernaturally beautiful women all day.

The cleric responded telling her that “when you enter paradise, Allah will remove the jealousy from your heart. And have no fear, for you will lord over the Houris and be their queen.” Still apprehensive, the Muslim wife asked, “But must he have the Houris?” Laughing, the cleric reassured her: “Look, when you enter paradise, you will be more beautiful than the Houris—you will be their mistress. Okay? And, when you enter paradise Allah will remove any jealousy or concerns from your heart.”

So your answer Judi is that you get to be queen of the whores. Feel better?

@Stilton, as for getting 76 versus 72, I'd be more concerned about the inevitable whore inequality debate that would inevitably develop in the afterlife. Quite frankly, I'd like my afterlife to be free of such squabbles.

Anonymous said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Mrs J! May this one and the next 137 be WONDERFUL! After that, slow down a little....As for the champagne, considering the "joys" of government prescribed healthcare coverage, perhaps chasing it with a little Jack Daniels is appropriate.


TheOldMan said...

Happy Birthday Mrs. Jarlsberg with many more healthy ones to come. Heck that lady born in 1899 is still going strong so you are not even out of your first childhood! Time to get that convertible hotrod!

What these Mooselimbs never seem to get is that eternal life with 72 virgins is not a good deal! Get it, they're virgins, as in you are never going to get any. Damn just how stupid (okay I know) are these Mooselimbs?

Yes by all means, send all D.C. elected officials to the VA!

SC said...

Happy Birthday, Mrs. Jarlsberg! And many, many more.

Geoff King said...

72 is half a gross. No wonder these half-gross women are still virgins. Have fun with that Jihadis.

Shelly said...

Happy birthday to Mrs. J and condolences to you Dr. J for your health insurance predicament. Mrs. J might want to consider a Medicare HMO, which I have through United Healthcare (AARP) and there are others. There are no premiums for the area I live in (same as you) other than the Medicare premium deducted automatically from your SS payment. It has been slightly north of $100 the last few years. It has full coverage, i.e., doctors, hospital and prescription drugs. The copays are reasonable. It was a no brainer for me as my employer subsidized retiree Medicare supplement was going to be $300 per month. I've had my first major claim situation this year with my hip replacement and so far so good. The hospital copay is steep at $250 per day for the first five days, $150 thereafter, but my OOP maximum in any year for all copays is $4,900. It's worth considering. I wish you all the best in this terrible predicament Obama caused and hope that Trump can alleviate it.

GenEarly said...

I realize it's a bit "radical' but the missus and I are on the 1880 Plan and it's working fine so far. We don't have ObamysCare and we don't pay no stinkin penalty either. We have seceded
from the USSA.
The rest of you may jump through all the hoops you want, but you will die anyway. I just prefer dying Free of tyrants.

Colby Muenster said...

Happy happy birthday to Mrs. Jarlsberg, and thank you for sharing your husband with us! I hope you enjoyed that fish filet sammich.

Hopefully this is the last time you have to deal with O'LiarCare, but I wonder what the "Repealers" have in mind to cover folks like you who are self employed. Hopefully this Price guy has a good plan! It sure was fun to watch the moonbat heads explode AGAIN yesterday.

I have to laugh my butt off when I see Zeke Immanuel on Megyn Kelly's show defending O'LiarCare. These snobby, holier than thou bureaucrats really don't get it, do they? Do they really believe clinging to the ACA is going to give them and O'Liar some sort of wonderful legacy? Yes, I think they do.

72 virgins... (or 76 as the case may be)....
If this is Achmed's idea of the ultimate heavenly reward, Achmed has a perverted sexual hangup the size of Texas. The afterlife to Christians (and probably many other religions) is a utopic paradise where there is no pain, suffering, hunger, want, hate, war, or even disagreement. And all Achmed can think about is having sex with virgins? Its like winning $400 million in the lottery and celebrating because you can finally afford to get that new lawnmower.

And I have always maintained that the 72 virgins may not necessarily be human women. There, after all, is such a thing as a virgin sheep; or heck, maybe a virgin elephant. How about a virgin Sumo wrestler? Virgin stink bug? What if Achmed gets to heaven and finds out he didn't quite make the grade, and HE is one of somebody else's 72 virgins?

Unknown said...

In RE: Warner Brothers cartoons, just last night I ran across this documentary on Mel Blanc, who did all the voices:
He was by all accounts a wonderful man.

Geoff King said...

After blowing himself up at a Catholic Church Ice Cream Social in Pittsburg, Achmed made his way to the pearly gates. There, he is greeted by George Washington.
“How dare you attack the nation I helped conceive!” yells Mr. Washington, slapping Achmed in the face. Patrick Henry comes up from behind: “You wanted to end those Americans’ liberty, so they gave you death!” Henry punches Achmed on the nose. James Madison comes up next, and says, “This is why I allowed the Federal government to provide for the common defense!” He drops a large weight on Achmed’s knee.

Achmed is subject to similar beatings from John Randolph of Roanoke, James Monroe and 65 other 18th-century American revolutionaries. As he writhes on the ground, Thomas Jefferson picks him up to hurl him back toward the gate where he is to be judged.

As Achmed awaits his journey to his final very hot destination, he screams, “This is not what I was promised!”

An angel replies: “I told you there would be 72 Virginians waiting for you. What did you think I said?”

Lee The Voice said...

Happy Birthday, Mrs Jarlsberg.

Judi King said...

@Econ: Feel better???????? I'm NOT a muslim or a jihadi and have NO intention of blowing myself up for anything. Thank you very much! My question was to point out the total inequality of the muslim cult.

REM1875 said...

HappY Birthday!!!

MAX Redline said...

I just completed signing up for renewed mandatory health insurance; 40 pages of documents, and they want us to send in copies of some other stuff. Delightful. I can hardly wait for Medicare, that should be at least as much fun.

John the Econ said...

@Colby Muenster, I may have been totally wrong about Trump actually becoming President, but I am still sticking by my prediction that in the foreseeable future, we're going to be on some sort of "single payer" scheme, be it Medicare or something else. As I've already said here many times, "Repeal" simply isn't viable since most of the system as we knew it before ObamaCare doesn't exist anymore. This was the primary goal of ObamaCare. Ironically, the only people "repeal" would benefit would be the young who are turning their noses up at ObamaCare anyway. People like @Stilton would be totally screwed by "repeal". No private insurance company wants to take on new customers over 50 for any rate that would make economic sense, no matter how healthy they might be.

I do totally agree with you regarding Achmed's totally retarded view of the afterlife, and think your metaphor is brilliant. Personally, I like to think of it as a spiritual awakening where one fully realizes the limitations of the life we lived as humans on earth. I pity people who's imagination is so limited that they can only think of such unbounded potential in terms of sex. (Another way that Islam is similar to much of Progressivism?) Don't get me wrong, sex is great. But I can imagine a level of existence so awesome that an existence solely about sex would seem, well, boring. At least I hope so.

In fact, now that I think more about it, could what Achmed has been sold, in fact, be "hell"?

Sorry folks for getting a bit metaphysical here for in a discussion that started on ObamaCare. But since the future of health care in the US is still looking pretty dismal, I need something to look forward to.

Speaking of: Still enjoying the MSM narrative that Castro was successful because he gave Cubans "free healthcare". Free? The average wage in Cuba is $20 a month and if you check into a Cuban hospital, you'd better bring your own bed sheets. Worth it? Totally, if you are a wealthy virtue signalling Progressive living comfortably in the US.

@Judi King, didn't think you did. But you are right. I have to wonder why that imam even bothered responding to that woman, because in his world women are only valued for sex if they're young and sexy, and/or domestic slavery if they are anything else. Someone tell me again just who it is in the world conducting this "war against women".

james daily said...

Do you think those martyrs will get a infinite supply of Viagra? JtE is correct, some days I rather be fishing or hunting or even splitting a beer with my deceased buddies, swapping stories where the first liar hasn't a chance. Whoever sold these people this crock is one heck of a salesman.

Tunnel Dweller said...

Used your material here and hope it is done properly in my non-profit Blog, which has been published daily for the last eight years:

jlw said...

belated Happy Birthday, Mrs. J

John Denison said...

Happy Birthday Mrs. J.

As Stilt knows, Rosemary and I are married 42 years and you guys are around that number as I recall. I always, and I mean to the point that her eyes roll involuntarily, tell her that she is a LUCKY woman. She just bats her lovely eyes and says, "yes, but you are blessed". Which is true and she wins the point! Stilt is blessed. Now go make him admit it.

Oh, and tell Stilt that after 4 weeks of work scattered over 9 months, the kithen is done and Rosemary is very happy with it.