Maternity Care in Dental Coverage?

I tried to find out what dental coverage was available in my little corner of Texas under Obamacare, so I tried out again.  Imagine my surprise when I selected Dental|Texas|You and your spouse and got this:

Yep.  “All plans must offer the same essential health benefits,” including maternity and newborn care.  Because when I go in for a tooth cleaning or a root canal, I need that maternity coverage.

Yessiree, Bob.

Now some will say the law doesn’t actually require that; Obama’s HealthCare Store is what’s messed up.

Yessiree, Bob.

Some Thoughts on Hobby Lobby

I’m riffing here and in a nearby post on The Wall Street Journal Law Blog‘s excerpts of a couple of opinions from this week’s Supreme Court Hobby Lobby decision. That decision can be seen here.

The excerpts in this post are from Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s dissent.

Page 8 of the dissent: The exemption sought by Hobby Lobby and Conestoga would override significant interests of the corporations’ employees and covered dependents. It would deny legions of women who do not hold their employers’ beliefs access to contraceptive coverage that the [Affordable Care Act] would otherwise secure… In sum, with respect to free exercise claims no less than free speech claims, “[y]our right to swing your arms ends just where the other man’s nose begins.”

What I Can See Now With ObamaMart

President Barack Obama’s ObamaMart—that contraption—is up and running, or so Obama and his chief shill, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, claim (even though some very serious—dangerous—warts remain).  I decided to try it out and see what the Obamacare law itself would offer me in terms of plans that are cheaper and better than the ones I have through my wife’s employer (which, knock wood, still are legal…so far).

Who’s in Charge?

Progressive-Democratic Party Vice Presidential candidate Kamala Harris (D, CA), at a virtual (because, of course) round table with some Arizona small business owners, said that [a] Harris administration, together with Joe Biden as the president of the United States would be friendly to those small businesses.


Of course, she then changed her phrasing: The Biden-Harris administration will provide….

An innocent misspeak by Harris? Or was this a Freudian slip? Or was she projecting?

Or was it something else?

He Misspoke?

Progressive-Democratic Party Presidential candidate Joe Biden spoke to a few reporters who, along with a few union bigwigs, were his entire audience (carefully unfilmed by the press, in contrast to the frequently done panning across President Donald Trump’s audiences with a view to “worrying” about masks and social distancing) at his Warren, MI, campaign stop the other day.

At that campaign event, Biden said that our armed forces had seen 118,984 cases and 6,114 deaths.

A Shootdown

Iran shot down a Ukrainian civilian airliner as it departed a Tehran airport, with the loss of all aboard.  The shootdown occurred shortly (a few hours) after Iran had launched some missiles at Iraqi facilities on which were based a number of American soldiers.

Stipulate the shootdown was accidental.

It also was an example of monumental incompetence: ill- to nonexistent discipline on the part of the antiaircraft missile crew and breathtaking lack of situation awareness by every single individual in the crew’s chain of command from the operational commander all the way to the top in the Iranian military establishment.

A Health Care Coverage Step

Alexander Acosta, Steven Mnuchin, and Alex Azar, respectively Secretaries of Labor, Treasury, and Health and Human Services, are in the process of offering one.  They’re putting together a rule that would expand HRAs, Health Reimbursement Arrangements.  These are plans that allow employers to reimburse employees for certain qualified health expenses.  Their expansion consists of two parts:

  • permit[ting] employers to offer HRAs to reimburse employees for health insurance purchased in the individual market—allowing employers to provide a contribution as significant as they would have made for the premiums of a traditional employer-sponsored plan.

The Moral Relativism of the Left

It doesn’t matter whether the Left is our own gang or Germany’s—they carefully are insisting that their hate groups are legitimate while those claiming to be on the right are terrible.  And they distort the facts while they’re about it, so lost in their own bigotry are they.

This cynical distortion is from Deutsche Welle (the author of the piece didn’t have the courage to sign his name to it, as do other authors of DW articles):

In his comments, Trump also appeared to show sympathy for the white nationalists’ efforts to preserve Confederate monuments—the issue that had started the confrontations, as a monument depicting Civil War General Robert E Lee was being removed in Charlottesville.

Wages or Benefits

Every month, the Labor Department’s jobs report helps shine a light on the growth of overall wages, which has been slow in recent years. But what gets far less attention are the other components of compensation—health insurance, paid leave, retirement benefits—that in recent years have generally outpaced wage growth, as shown in new Labor Department data released Friday.

And isn’t that a travesty?  Used to be, in the ’50s and early ’60s, these benefits—including the pensions that were those retirement benefits were perks an employer used to induce top performers to work for him and not someone else.  Remember when “full dental” was such a big deal?

Strategy and Foreign Policy

This is how Frank Bruni ended his Saturday op-ed in The New York Times [emphasis in the original]:

I felt sick. For a few hours, even a few days, I’d like to focus on the pain of Parisians and how that magnificent city reclaims any sense of order, any semblance of safety. I’d like not to wonder if Hillary Clinton’s odds of election just ticked upward or downward or if Donald Trump’s chest-thumping bluster suddenly became more seductive.