It ain’t a voucher, honey…

Susan Bankston

It’s a coupon
by Susan Bankston

Dear Congressman Paul Ryan,

I have heard about your plan to give everybody over the age of 65 a voucher for $6,000 that they can use to buy health insurance instead of having Medicare.

So, Paul, I wandered over to United Healthcare and asked to see a healthcare plan for a 64-year-old woman in Texas who doesn’t smoke. Not one of the fancy plans, mind you. The fancy ones are far more expensive.

They showed me a plan for $880.22 a month with a $5,000 deductible. And I only qualify if I don’t have a preexisting condition, which I do. I didn’t mean to have a preexisting condition; I was just born that way.

I’m not saying they would charge more for my 68-year-old female self, but odds are they would. I can’t check that because they currently don’t offer any plans for people over 65, because we all have Medicare, thanks to Lyndon Johnson. However, I suspect that insurance executives all over America are in a back room rubbing their hands together and licking their chops at the thought of taking my mortgage money and tying me to the railroad tracks.

And Lord only knows what they’d charge for a 75-year-old woman. After all, they are in the profit-making business, and it’s not cheap to hire someone to sit around all day making good use of a denied rubber stamp. Rubber stamps aren’t free, and Scrooge is already tied up in Texas slashing children’s healthcare, so you’ll have to hire someone to do it for pay instead of just for fun.

Paul, your $6,000 might get me through July and cost me $5,000 in deductibles, plus co-pays on top of that. So, here’s my question: what would you and Ayn Rand have me do in August? Is your solution to advise me not to buy any green bananas after July?

Paul, that is not a voucher. That is a coupon.

Honey, I’ve been around since water was wet, and I’m planning on being around so long that I’ll be living on borrowed time. Now you’re gonna make it borrowed time with five payments past due.

Recent important academic studies have shown that old people tend to get sick before they die. Very few of us die from a semi-tragic monster-truck-rally accident or from getting stomped by a bull we were attempting to ride. I do know a guy who got hurt at shuffleboard once, but it was his own fault for playing nekkid, drunk, and old.

I think you’ll be hearing from my
children next. Come to find out, they are as excited as you’d expect at the notion
of me coming to live in their basement—which I’d have to do once your insurance guys take all my money and I’m deducted into poverty. In all honesty, Paul, I don’t think any person with a basement, extra bedroom, surplus garage space, or a
backyard tent is going to be thrilled with your plan to move Momma and Daddy in, just so you can keep your rich-guy tax breaks.

So, Sweetie, you can take your $6,000 and stick it in your ear. The grocery store gives better coupons than that.

Your friend,


Susan Bankston lives in Richmond, Texas, where she writes about her hairdresser at The World’s Most Dangerous Beauty Salon, Inc., at juanitajean.com.



Susan Bankston

Susan Bankston lives in Richmond, Texas, where she writes about her hairdresser at The World’s Most Dangerous Beauty Salon, Inc., at juanitajean.com.

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