[Welcome Lizardoid readers!]
Did you know that you can opt out of Medicare altogether? That is, once you retire, you can elect not to participate in Part A, at all? In my defense, this issue has never come up, and I couldn't begin to imagine why one might wish to do so (after all, we've already paid in a gazillion dollars in Medicare "premiums," aka taxes). But some folks, including retired Congresscritter Dick Armey, have chosen to do so.
Unfortunately, opting out of Medicare benefits also means opting out of Social Security benefits, as well.
You read that right: no Medicare, no Social Security.
Talk about pay to play!
As to why some folks might want to decline Medicare "insurance" benefits: well, it appears that they're regular IB readers:
"(B)ecause the health care services provided to Medicare beneficiaries are inferior to those they could obtain privately...because “the health care services provided to Medicare beneficiaries are now and will be, in the future, rationed because of budget constraints...and because the health care services provided to Medicare beneficiaries do not protect the plaintiffs’ privacy."
That's gonna leave a mark.
So, Mr Armey (and several co-plaintiffs) are asking the U S District Court for D.c. to stop the Feds from cutting off their Social Security benefits. What's at stake, they believe, is our right to make choices about our health insurance and health care.
Be interesting to see how this goes.
[Hat Tip: Sonia Blumstein]