For Barack Obama, here’s a website that works a little too well: MyCancellation.com is posting cancellation letters from people who may have liked their health insurance but can’t keep it.
In little more than a week, the site has collected more than 400 letters ““ and attracted more than 10,000 Twitter followers.
The conservative group Independent Women’s Voice is behind the project. Its president and CEO, Heather Higgins, says it’s an effort to give voice to people on the losing end of Obamacare.
“This is just the first wave, and we wanted to give them a face and a place to tell their story,” Higgins said.
Throughout the country, a wave of cancellation notices has been going out as insurers prepare to dump policies that don’t meet the standards of the new health care reform law. Notice of actions those insurers are taking include a variety of next steps for consumers, many of whom have been jarred by the disruption and have taken to the web to vent their frustration.
MyCancellation.com encourages people visiting the site to share their cancellation letter by taking a picture of it or scanning it. Some postings on the site are photos of people brandishing cancellation letters, while some are shots only of the letters themselves, with identifying information blacked out.
“Just remember,” the site warns, “no crude gestures, no crude language, no personal information.”
In some of the photos, the person shown has included a bit of written commentary. A photo posted Nov. 10 is of a man holding a note from an insurer as well as another piece of paper on which he’s written: “This Stinks. $230/month more for me.”
One letter sent in from a BlueCross BlueShield of Kansas customer, also posted Nov. 10, explains that the policy change is happening “because your current plan does not meet the benefit standards in the new health care reform law and will be discontinued after December 31.”
The cancellations extend to the public sector. A Nov. 11 posting shows what appears to be a cancellation letter sent to a U.S. Senate staffer earlier this month.
Obama has apologized that people are losing their policies after he said they wouldn’t, but he contends that the cancellations are a step toward getting better health coverage to more people.
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Much has been made of David Brooks’s recent New York Times column, in which confesses to missing already the civility and humanity of Barack Obama, compared to who might take his place. In NewYorker.com, Jeffrey Frank reminds us how critical such attributes are to foreign policy. “It’s hard to imagine Kennedy so casually referring to the leader of Russia as a gangster or a thug. For that matter, it’s hard to imagine any president comparing the Russian leader to Hitler [as] Hillary Clinton did at a private fund-raiser. … Kennedy, who always worried that miscalculation could lead to war, paid close attention to the language of diplomacy.”
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