This gets tiring after a while. Why not just abolish the military and be done with it? (Or would that be too radical even for Barry O.? Probably not. Just wishful thinking on his part.)
Via The Daley Gator, the Washington Free Beacon details how the new Obama budget protects all unionized government workers and their benefits (of course!) but hands another crap sandwich to military families and retirees. Eat up folks:
The Obama administration’s proposed defense budget calls for military families and retirees to pay sharply more for their healthcare, while leaving unionized civilian defense workers’ benefits untouched. The proposal is causing a major rift within the Pentagon, according to U.S. officials. Several congressional aides suggested the move is designed to increase the enrollment in Obamacare’s state-run insurance exchanges.
The disparity in treatment between civilian and uniformed personnel is causing a backlash within the military that could undermine recruitment and retention.
The proposed increases in health care payments by service members, which must be approved by Congress, are part of the Pentagon’s $487 billion cut in spending. It seeks to save $1.8 billion from the Tricare medical system in the fiscal 2013 budget, and $12.9 billion by 2017.
Translation: military will pay more. DOD civilian personnel will not. The retirees would be the ones shifted into the Obamacare exchanges.
Under the new plan, the Pentagon would get the bulk of its savings by targeting under-65 and Medicare-eligible military retirees through a tiered increase in annual Tricare premiums that will be based on yearly retirement pay.
Significantly, the plan calls for increases between 30 percent to 78 percent in Tricare annual premiums for the first year. After that, the plan will impose five-year increases ranging from 94 percent to 345 percent—more than 3 times current levels.
According to congressional assessments, a retired Army colonel with a family currently paying $460 a year for health care will pay $2,048.
The new plan hits active duty personnel by increasing co-payments for pharmaceuticals and eliminating incentives for using generic drugs.
[One note: using the scenario given, the retired O-5 family would pay $2,048 as an annual enrollment fee NOT as stated for a year of health care. There are still doctor and pharmaceutical co-pays.]
The hardest hit? Senior citizens like my grandfather, a Vietnam vet in his 80s. Via the VFW:
The DOD budget unveiled February 13 recommends 1.7 percent military pay raises for 2013 and 2014, followed by a scant 0.5 percent increase in 2015, and 1 percent in 2016. Also announced were plans to almost quadruple Tricare Prime enrollment fees for some working age military retirees, impose Tricare for Life enrollment fees on those older than 65, and introduce enrollment fees and increased deductibles on Tricare Standard and Extra users. Included in DOD’s healthcare revenue plan are increased pharmaceutical copayments for retirees as well as military dependents.
Emphasis mine. On a fixed income of Social Security and savings, new “enrollment fees” will decimate some folks financially. My grandfather included. Hope and change: how many folks can you ruin financially in one term?
UPDATE: From The Gateway Pundit, I had forgotten about the hazardous duty pay cuts:
They will now only get the $7.50 daily proration for the individual days they are actually serving in harm’s way instead of for the whole month. (DOD)
Barack Obama cut pay for military men and women serving in harm’s way starting this month.