Trump-Care, Is It Better?

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Hurray for the GOP!  They finally passed a health care bill for the American People!  Mind you, they don’t want it for themselves, or for their families, but they deem it perfect for us.  They were so proud of themselves for reaching this monumental decision, they ordered crates of beer to celebrate.  Oh, what fun.

But, here is the question everyone is asking, Is Trump-Care better?

Well, lets take a closer look.

Under the proposed Trump-Care bill, the following changes will occur.

(My source for the following summations:  Jonathan Gruber, Economics Professor from MIT)
  1.  States will be allowed to receive waivers, to charge higher premiums for those individuals who suffer “pre-existing” conditions, that could include, but not limited to:  Sexual Assault, Arthritis, Asthma, Depression, Pregnancy, Anxiety, Cancer, Diabetes, etc.  If you want to read the complete list visit here at CNN.Com.  Also, just for your information, such waivers are NOT allowed under the Affordable Care Act.
  2. States will be allowed to “opt-out” of rules, established under Affordable Care Act, that require insurance companies to pay for “basic stuff,” such as… Hospitalization, Emergency Room Care, Ambulance Transportation… etc.
  3. Mental Health Coverage, and Drug Treatment Coverage would “wither.”
  4. Insurance companies will be able to charge old people, 5 times as much as they charge younger people, for the SAME coverage.
  5. Big companies will no longer be required to provide health insurance for their employees.
  6. As a result of millions of Americans (24 million) losing their health insurance, hospitals will suffer financially, and the hospitals already in dire straits are likely to close.
  7. Medicaid, which goes to help the poor and elderly, will be cut almost 900 billion dollars.  In fact, the subsidies that are set in place to help the poor and elderly, take the biggest cuts, under Trump-Care.
  8. If there be any “silver-lining,” or good news within this bill, it is this:  Those making over $250,000/yr will receive a huge tax cut.  How huge?  It is estimated to be within the 300 billion dollar range.  (At least someone will profit from Trump-Care)
  9. Those who suffer from Depression will likely pay $8,490/yr EXTRA.
  10. Those who suffer Rheumatoid Arthritis will likely pay $26,580/yr EXTRA.
  11. Those who suffer from Asthma will likely pay $4,340/yr EXTRA.

MIT Economics Professor Jonathan Gruber, admits he is certainly no historian, however, it seems, to the best of his knowledge…Trump-Care…is the largest redistribution from the poor to the rich in one bill, this country has every seen.

Trump-Care, is it better?

You, decide.

***

To watch the interview by Rachel Maddow of Jonathan Gruber visit here.

Daily Prompt: Better

 

From Snowflakes to Blanket

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I’m a little snowflake,
I drift about.
 
Looking for injustice,
hear me shout.
 
You label me as liberal,
and think me lame.
 
But I embrace your symbol,
and use it for my name!
 
Snowflakes are small,
and they seem quite frail.
 
But when we come together,
we are a force from hell! 
 
We are the resistance,
marching for our land.
 
So, snowflakes, remember
UNITED WE STAND!
***
 
 
 
 
 
 

The God Who Sees Me…

“You are the God who sees me…” __ Hagar

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I’ve always felt a kinship with Hagar.  Hagar was the maidservant of Sarah, Abraham’s wife.

This is her story:

Sarah, the wife of Abraham, was barren.  None-the-less, God had promised  that through their children would come the nation of Israel.  Abraham and Sarah had tried to have children for many years, but now they were old, and Sarah finally gives up hope.  One day, she tells her husband…  “The Lord has kept me from having children.  Go sleep with my maidservant (Hagar); perhaps I can build a family through her.”

[SCRRRREEEEEECH…]

[Pardon the interruption…it’s just my wheels coming to a halt!  Okay, if I had been the writer of this Genesis’ story, I would have written it, more to this effect,

“…go sleep with my maidservant; perhaps I can build a family through her,” said, no woman ever! 

Call it a hunch, but, I have a sneaky suspicion this idea was more Abraham’s than Sarah’s.]

[…now…back to the story]

So, Abraham, “obeyed” his wife, and slept with Hagar, and Hagar, became pregnant.  Of course, tension mounts between the two women, until one day, all hell breaks loose within the camp.  Sarah, in a jealous rage, mistreats Hagar.  Scripture gives no detail as to how, but it was bad enough for Hagar to run away, and hide, from her mistress, in the dessert.  Scared and alone, Hagar finally finds a spring of water and pauses  to drink.   God sees her at the spring, and begins a conversation with her.  It goes something like this: 

God:  Hagar, what has happened and where are you going?”

Hagar:  “I’m running away…”

God: “Go back… face the problem, and I will be with you.”

Hagar: “You are the God who sees me…”

And so, Hagar returns.  The problem doesn’t go away, but God is true to his word, and helps her every step of the way.  Eventually, she is blessed with a son, she names Ishmael, and through Ismael’s descendants the Arab nation is born. 

 

In my life, I have endured many “Hagar moments,” and I bet you have too.

How often I’ve felt…

  • …alone
  • …misunderstood
  • …unloved
  • …without hope
  • …a victim of circumstances, beyond my control
  • …an outcast
  • …ready to give up

 

When I read God’s words to Hagar, I read them as if they were written just for me.  He tells me, “Go back, my child, and I will be with you.  Don’t give up, I have a good plan for you.”

I’m so thankful, He is the God who sees me.

***

Daily Prompt: Measure

Everything we need is give through His good measure.

 

 

Photo Challenge: Dense

Photo Challenge:  Dense

Bird House on The Cape
Bird House at Cape Cod

So, I took a little creative license with this photo.  I captured it last week, while visiting my daughter in Massachusetts.  In the original, the house was almost hidden by a dense thicket of branches.  I felt, the main focus, was obviously the bird house, so I did a little cropping, and was able to pull the image in quite nicely.  Next, I softened the edges, by using a vignette filter, with Adobe Photoshop…thus my creative license.  I was pleasantly pleased, with the outcome, so much so, I intend to use this as the subject of a forth-coming, watercolor painting.

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Danica, my Dingo, resting in the fallen leaves.

I took this photograph, while living in Hampton Falls, New Hampshire.  I was outside, one late, Autumn day, raking the oak and maple leaves that densely covered our yard, when I noticed, Danica, had found her comfort, nestled within the pile I had made.

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Apples, gleaned from a local farm in the Shenandoah Valley, on their way to help feed the hungry.

This photograph was also taken on an Autumn day, but this time, in the Shenandoah Valley.  Every year, our church, gleans the orchards of local, kind-hearted farmers.  The densely packed apples, were distributed to shelters, that help feed the poor and homeless within our community.  I absolutely love our church!  RISE is all inclusive and seeks, in every way possible, to mend God’s creation.  If you’re ever in the area (Harrisonburg Virginia), please visit us!  You will be warmly welcomed.  http://www.riseharrisonburg.com

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Peels from the apples, destined for a pie.

Continuing with an apple theme, this photograph was taken while I was in the midst of making a pie.  “My counter lay dense, in beautiful hues of red.”  (hmmm…that last line could be the beginnings of a beautiful poem…)

***

Weekly Photo Challenge: Dense

Accepting Bridges, Instead of Walls

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God has called us to build bridges and not walls.  The whole story of Christ’s life, testifies to this.  During his ministry, Jesus broke down many walls of separation.

For example:

  • Jesus was a Judean Refugee living in Egypt.  (What if Egypt had built a wall?)
  • Jesus had many women disciples. (Gender Wall)
  • Jesus praised the Samaritans, whom the Jews considered dogs. (Race Wall)
  • Jesus spent his time with sinners, instead of the religious. (Religion Wall)
  • Jesus admonishes the poor, instead of the rich. (Status Wall)
  • Jesus proclaimed Grace instead of Law. (Rule/Regulation Wall)

Jesus leveled the playing field, where all are equal, and He calls us to do the same.

For He is our peace.  He has made us both one body, and has broken down the hostile, dividing wall between us.  Ephesians 2:14

 

Daily Prompt: Acceptance

 

Photo Challenge: Atop

The Challenge:

Experimenting with our point of view in a photograph allows us to establish a setting, tell a specific story, or rethink our own perspective. This week, consider your point of view as you respond to this challenge’s theme, “Atop.” If you’re physically on top of a thing or a place — a mountain, a skyscraper — what type of scene do you want to share in your frame? Consider, too, other interpretations of “Atop” — what does it mean or look like to be on top of a soapbox? A bestseller list? The world?

Show us your best image — we look forward to seeing everyone’s takes! – Cheri Lucas Rowlands

My Takes:

Zip Lining!

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Zip Lining in the White Mountains of New Hampshire.
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Victor, my friend, takes the leap from the top!
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The views from the top were outstanding!

 

New York City!

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View from the Empire State Building in New York City.
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View from the Empire State Building in New York City.
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View from the Empire State Building in New York City.

 

Hope you’ve enjoyed my photos, as much as I enjoyed taking them!

Life is Good!