June 21st, 2011
11:47 AM ET

Man says he robbed bank to get health care

A man walks into a bank and slips a note to the teller.

The note reads: “This is a bank robbery. Please only give me one dollar.”

Then the man tells the bank employees, “I’ll be sitting right over there in the chair waiting for the police."

He perches himself on a chair outside the bank he just robbed and waits for the police to arrive.

That suspect, James Verone, who is from Gaston County, North Carolina, told CNN affiliate WCNC that he robbed a bank for $1 for the sole reason of getting in jail so he could get free health care. He was not armed during the robbery.

Verone, 59, told WCNC he doesn’t have health insurance, but has a host of medical problems: A growth on his chest, two ruptured disks and a problem with his left foot.  Without a job and money, he reached the conclusion that going to jail would mean free medical care (although it's not free for taxpayers).

“I wanted to make it known that this wasn't for monetary reasons, but for medical reasons," Verone said.  His jailhouse interview with the station is above.

The logic, he told the news station, was to get a three-year sentence so he can get out of jail then collect Social Security and then later live in a Myrtle Beach condo.

Verone told his local paper, The Gaston Gazette that he had worked as a delivery man for Coca-Cola for 17 years.  That career ended three years ago, and he couldn’t find steady employment.  Then the medical problems began.  He lived off his savings and sought a part-time job.

The police charged him with larceny, not bank robbery, because of the $1 amount he demanded at the bank. Verone told his hometown paper if the jail penalty isn’t great enough, the crime will happen again.

Verone told WCNC, "I guess I am manipulating the courts to get medical care."

Is Verone’s story an example of one man gaming the system or a product of a flawed health care in America? Sound off below.

soundoff (1,430 Responses)
  1. Tiffany

    I think this is ridiculous. People, this man was VERY ill... he could have died. So should we have just let him die? Wow. We are a country of uncompassionate people if we would rather let someone die than treat them.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. vicki


    June 22, 2011 at 09:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Trevor

    Only in America are people dumb enough to fight for corrupt insurance companies instead of having universal healthcare. We are a military family and we receive free healthcare, it may not be the best but it is free. I hear military folks saying that they do not want to pay for someone else's healthcare but they don't seem to mind others paying for ours. Everyone should enjoy going to the doctor, being treated, getting healthy without becoming bankrupt. But our good ol' god fearing republicans have convinced people that helping people is bad, while it is only bad for business not bad for people. Healthcare is a right, not a privilege. You cannot have life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness without life, and you cannot have life without healthcare. And to all you good christian republican folk out there who insist that you will not pay for someone else's healthcare, I am certain you and your republican politicians all have a one way ticket to hell. Enjoy.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:21 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Gumboz1953

      Trevor, you are brilliant. Most intelligent thing I've read today. I don't understand how the people who are against universal healthcare always seem to call themselves "Christian." Or maybe I'm wrong; maybe they're not Christian. That would explain it, anyway.

      June 22, 2011 at 09:38 | Report abuse |
    • just a guy

      Trevor: thanks to your family for your service. Something missing here is this though, you say we are paying for your healthcare and this is true, but your family is also working to protect our country thus provided heathcare as a result of that work.

      "You cannot have life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness without life, and you cannot have life without healthcare." Really, so how long has heathcare been provided in this country? I don't really know the answer, but seems to me that until the last 150 years or so the population of the world and the USA has continued to grow w/o everyone having healthcare and a doctor. Therefore life has happened w/o healthcare far longer than with it.

      June 22, 2011 at 09:43 | Report abuse |
    • Angie

      @ Trevor- the politicians have a steady income and free health care for the rest of their lives so what do they care .

      June 22, 2011 at 10:58 | Report abuse |
  4. Freedomisfree

    This same thing happened to me, but with my car. I was driving around without any car insurance whatsoever, cause I'm a "typical macho guy" and I got into an accident. 15K worth of damage and the car couldn't run. When I called Geico to make a claim they denied me!!! They said I didn't have a policy with them. Well did I quit? oh no way. I called Obama and he forced them to cover me with Taxpayer money! Now I have a new car and I'm scooting around all over town. thanks Taxpayers!

    June 22, 2011 at 09:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. retiringearlytopaylesstaxes

    Kudos to Mr. Verone for original thinking. If I was in his same shoes, I might also take that approach. But fortunately, I'm in a much better situation and will be able to retire early. One incentive to retire early is that my tax costs will go down dramatically (I'm hoping for zero taxes) and I can cut the budget to both our federal and state (California – sheesh the legislature is incompetent) government's that only mismanage the money they take from us tax payers. Well, their hand won't be in my pocket soon anymore.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. CDH

    This is an example of a terrible health care system. Can one of the idots out there who claim America has "the best healthcare system in the world" explain why someone who worked his whole life in America doesn't have coverage. In almost any other country, he's covered! We have the best universities and R&D, NOT THE BEST HEALTHCARE SYSTEM! The fact that rich people from other countries come here to get care while hard-working americans can't get decent coverage is an example of a bad healthcare system, not a good one.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Tel

    This guy needs to be hired as a professional loophole-finder.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. The Judge

    The cost of medical insurance for everyone can be covered if everyone
    pays into the system and that means all those under the tax radar. Put in a VAT and use it to fund the system. All would pay that tax.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:28 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. abidingdude

    Nice attempt at a campaign ad, troll.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. GG

    As Bugs Bunny would say – what a maroon. That's like waiting for your house to catch on fire before you get home owners insurance. Good luck getting it.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Ash I

    Bhavin, you need to get your facts straight about cancer. Cancer has probable causes, some much stronger than others. But there are not guaranteed causes. In fact, unbeknownst to you, you could be having cancer yourself right now and not know it.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Jim Daly

    A. Goodwin
    -Eating organic and being healthy and fit won't stop you from getting breast cancer. Actually an influx of soy in ones diet is a direct risk factor to developing cancer. Soy is typically consumed by those organic eaters.....

    Two things are happening here, your friend isn't eating the right way and two; your an idiot and do not understand the term organic or organic foods. Read a book and get some knowledge.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:31 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. bnakka

    I think providing health care to everyone and forcing the insurance companies to pay for it is stupid. It is like going into a store and telling them you will buy something for whatever you want to pay for it. I wonder how many can go to walmart and tell them "I will pay 5 cents for that TV" and would like to see how they get served.

    All these problems stem from medical malpractice, exorbitant rates for simple stuff. Without reigning in the costs for hospital care none of these new laws will ever start to help anyone.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:32 | Report abuse | Reply
    • just a guy

      Yup. If it weren't so easy to sue and doctors/hospital didn't have to pay so much for malpractice insurance then costs would be significantly less.

      June 22, 2011 at 09:45 | Report abuse |
  14. Liz

    I'd like to set the record straight on the Health Care Reform provision that coverage can not be denied due to a pre-existing condition. I have been in the health care business for over 30 years and have spent the better part of the last year and a half studying the law. This law does not go into effect until January 1, 2014.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:38 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Gumboz1953

      You need to study the law a little closer. That part of the health care bill (can't deny for pre-existing conditions) went into effect the MINUTE Obama signed the law.

      I think you're thinking of the mandate for everybody to buy insurance. That doesn't go into effect until 2014.

      June 22, 2011 at 09:42 | Report abuse |
    • Jonathan

      I don't care how long you have been in the industry Liz... you are not a lawyer and therefore your expertise does not apply to interpreting law.

      June 22, 2011 at 10:27 | Report abuse |
    • Heidi

      Sorry Liz you are incorrect. It went into effect immediately and 30,000 people have enrolled- less than the govt. planned for

      June 22, 2011 at 11:56 | Report abuse |
    • Liz

      Feel free to contact an ERISA attorney and get the story straight. The immediate requirement states that you can not deny ENROLLMENT. But a plan can still apply pre-existing condition rules to adults until 1/1/14.

      June 22, 2011 at 14:23 | Report abuse |
  15. Deneise Robinson

    I think our country is in sad shape and he had the right idea!!

    June 22, 2011 at 09:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Talmonis

    I salute your service Wzrd. And I truly hope, that when the time comes and the crazies act on their "second amendment solutions" our military veterans and loyal Americans will defend the populace against the rabid ones threatening to "take 'murica back" from anyone who thinks differently than their crazy little fringe.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. XxMacleodxX

    you are an idiot...Obamacare does not begin till 2014 and due to a loop hole now found will allow most of the middle class to qualify for medicaid (they do not count SSI contributions as income)

    June 22, 2011 at 09:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. Will S

    ...and now you begin to understand the point of mandatory coverage.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. PRISM 1234

    American Health care system is a dark, shameful spot on this country's conscience!

    June 22, 2011 at 09:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. FBMarky

    I don't know why everyone's hating on this guy for not having health insurance. This is exactly what the new law is designed to prevent. If everyone has health care (and it's NOT insurance, it's CARE) then illnesses can be found and treated early, and the costs for everyone go down. Plus, the greedy insurance companies get more customers.

    With "Obamacare", everyone would have health insurance and everyone would benefit. Get over it and enjoy another benefit of liberalism – the movement that brought you all the other good things you enjoy in this country!

    June 22, 2011 at 09:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Liz

    To "Gumboz1953" – read again my friend. The only pre-existing condition provision that went into effect immediately with the Affordable Health Care Act was for children under age 19. Actually, it became effective 6 months fromt he date the bill was signed (9/23/10). Insurers do not have to comply for adukts ubtil 2014. Look it up.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:50 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Jonathan

      Very strange then Liz how my mother's insurance company who had denied Lupus related claims for years all of the sudden began covering everything RIGHT after the law was signed. Oh yeah my 25 yo cousin was able to get onto her parents policy last summer also and then she had an appendectomy a month later... guess what she was covered and had it not been for the law being signed she would have had to declare bankruptcy. I am sick of health care professionals who have been to some workshops on the new law (some of which are not even teaching accurate interpretation) touting that they are experts all of the sudden.

      June 22, 2011 at 10:32 | Report abuse |
    • Liz

      Your ignorance is the reason these blogs go on and on and on. #1 – your cousin got her parent's policy because the law requires employers to cover "dependents" up to age 26 now. And of course the appendectomy was covered. An appendicitis is not a pre-existing condition you idiot. I can't address the Lupus situation because I have no idea why the plan chose to make the change. But rest assured, it has nothing to do with pre-existing condition for adults. PLEASE – I beg an attorney to respond to this post and put these misinformed people in their place. Apparently they've chosen to question my credentials not even knowing what I do for a living or how I obtain my information.

      June 22, 2011 at 14:38 | Report abuse |
  22. Gonzodon

    Headline: "Man robs bank to get health care." My misunderstanding. I thought this article was going to be about Obama and his tax and health care policies.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. whatthe

    We have the greatest health care system in the world, what are you talking about? No need to change anything. Anyone who falls sick and doesn't have insurance is a lazy freeloader and deserves what he gets. Just give rich people more money, that will fix everything.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. BL

    You can rationalize it anyway you want , but a "civilized" country that doesn't provide healthcare to it's citizens is barbaric. In this country healthcare is not a right but something to be afforded only to the those who "earn" it. There are many possible bipartisan solutions, the fact is, we blame the sick and weak for their illness, until it happens to us or a loved one.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. OllieNKD

    What people aren't bringing up about the need for universal healthcare is the impact it would have on the economy.

    The GOP argues that tax breaks for corporations and the wealthy will help create jobs. Years of tax cuts have not shown this to be true. Universal healthcare would save the dying manufacturing industry in America. Companies like General Motors have watched their healthcare costs for current and retired employees eat up resources at unsustainable rates. Imagine the investment in manpower and development that our companies could undertake without these costs.

    The same holds true for the struggling state governments. States are slashing teachers, police officers, and fire fighters. These are people who made the decision to accept less monetary gain for the betterment of all of us. Many are being laid off, and those that are retained are seeing their pay decreased in the form of healthcare contributions. However, because laws mandate the amount of spending that must be done for healthcare costs, these jobs represent the only flexibility that governors have in their budgeting.

    Finally, a system that removes the fear of bankruptcy as a consequence of illness will help optimize the cost-effectiveness of healthcare. People would be able to get treatment for problems in their early stages before costs skyrocket. Americans have a poor track record in making an upfront investment in order to reap huge benefits later (see also: Green Energy, War on Drugs, Responsible Immigration Reform, etc.). A healthy workforce is a productive workforce, and a productive workforce will make the short-sighted fat cats even richer!

    The concept is simple. Resources are finite. Someone who has more does so at the expense of others. If you are fortunate enough to control these resoucres (And no, I don't buy into the idea that you "worked harder" for it. I don't think you are working harder than the day laborer tearing off a roof on a 100 degree day for 7 bucks an hour.) you must realize that America has been good to you. Refusing to give a portion of that back to the hardworking people who made it possible for you to have so much is literally killing the golden goose.

    June 22, 2011 at 09:54 | Report abuse | Reply
    • PRISM 1234

      Ollie the things you said are true! But that's not what your average Republican conservative wants to know! They have bought into the lies of propaganda and fear mongering. UHC would bring such boom to this country that we would bust out of seams! It just shows you who really runs the county! It's NOT the people, that's for sure! And when I hear the starry eyed recitations We, the People, saying this country is of the People, by the People and for the People, it makes me cringe inside, because I know it's a LIE!

      June 22, 2011 at 10:05 | Report abuse |
  26. MRFOST


    It's the Lawyers that make healthcare so expensive. Actually, they are only the enabler. It's people suing the healthcare system when they don't get perfect results that is the problem.
    Have you ever noticed that there is a limit on how many entrants there are into the medical programs at universities, but there is no limit to the number of students in the law program...?

    June 22, 2011 at 09:55 | Report abuse | Reply
    • PRISM 1234

      "It's the Lawyers that make health care so expensive. Actually, they are only the enabler. It's people suing the health care system when they don't get perfect results that is the problem"
      Yeah, that's what THEY are telling you, in order to hide their crimes! No, the lawsuits actually are the fraction of the problem! Its' the Med/Pharma/Ins CO's greed for profits that's the REAL reason!

      June 22, 2011 at 11:29 | Report abuse |
  27. RealDeal

    Hey idiots....the reason health care is so expensive in America isn't because of people not having insurance, its because the medical industry in this country is extraordinarily corrupt and greedy, especially pharmaceutical companies but also doctors, insurance companies and hospitals. Add to that our ridiculously litigious legal system and culture, so doctors are charged fortunes for malpractice insurance. The whole system needs to be totally restructured, and it will be, because it simply can't survive as it is....its on track to bankrupt the country...

    June 22, 2011 at 09:57 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Rabbit

      Research and technology cost money.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:04 | Report abuse |
    • Jeremy

      @ rabbit – There are plenty of charities raising millions of dollars every year for medical research. Any other additonal money required should be supplimented by taxes/the government. Healthcare should not be a for profit business period.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:20 | Report abuse |
    • Rabbit

      Are you telling me that I should be forced to pay for healthcare taxes out of some kind of religious or moral obligation? I rather have the freedom to choose what I do with my money and be free to make my own choices in my life. This man made choices throughout his life to end up where he is. I don't see how he ended up where he is in the article. I will not feel sorry for some loser who steals from bank just to steal again from tax payers again based on the last few days of his life.

      June 22, 2011 at 12:05 | Report abuse |
    • Glenda

      Not everyone in America is given the same opportunities and "choices" in life. If you are fortunate enough to have a good job and enough money to survive or even be comfortable you should be thankful. However, you should not be so bitter and cruel towards people who were not fortunate enough to have the same choices you had. When a person is born in poverty, or loses his job of many years like the man in the story above, there is very little he or she can do to change their plight. Our society makes it nearly impossible to overcome the bonds of being or becoming poor!!

      June 22, 2011 at 18:34 | Report abuse |
    • just a guy

      Give me a break. I spent a good portion of my life in prison as a result of drug abuse and the crimes associated with it. I don't have a degree, yet I make in excess of 200k a year because I chose to make a change (no I don't go to NA/AA or am I associated with any religion). I don't want to hear preaching about no one has a chance blah, blah, blah...To me it's excuses trying to justify why someone else should pay for something for you. We certainly have a responsibility to lift people up, but it's not our responsibility to keep them there. You think pharmaceutical companies don't spend billions on the drug that gets you better? Where do they recoup their money? You think research is cheap?

      How about prisons, we lock people up for ridiculous drug offenses and feed the very system we say we deplore and create jobs in the prison society that employ millions of people, but don't want to give care to the people that make it possible for those millions to have jobs?

      Everyone has a choice, what that choice is is NOT dependent on government but on YOU.

      France? Go ahead, move there, they'll be bankrupt soon after Greece. The top 2% of wage earners pay a disproportionate share of the taxes already, why should they pay more? Tax, tax, tax, that seems to be the answer for everything, why not a flat tax. Income redistribution is just a form of taking from many who have made a CHOICE to have a better life. Sure, there are those that were born into it, but why should they not be able to receive what their family has earned?

      Idiots that want everything for free because someone else has it better than them disgust me.

      June 22, 2011 at 19:18 | Report abuse |
    • N H T K -12

      With some of things you said in your comment above, it looks that you're still in prison, just of the different kind! To claim that everyone has a chance in this corrupt , unjust, greed infested system, it shows that you're living in denial of reality....There are bars that are invisible/intangible, which keep a man in prison more then those that keep him caged up, because they are the ones of the heart, mind and spirit.

      P.S. No it's not true that Pharma Co's spend fortunes on research... It's a lie, they want people to believe. My own member of the family is a Pharmacy school graduate, gone even further into research. He knows first hand where the main research money comes from, and it's not from the prices of the drugs. But you go ahead and defend this corrupt system, but one thing is for sure: IT WILL CATCH UP WITH YOU, you will see!

      June 23, 2011 at 11:41 | Report abuse |
    • Rabbit

      So you are saying drug companies don't spend years testing drugs and doing studies before they release them to the public. What is the FDA for then? What are all those disclosures for side effects in drug commercials?

      June 23, 2011 at 13:11 | Report abuse |
    • N H T K -12

      LOL! FDA is one of the most corrupt organisations in this country! ll you need to do is research to se how things ar being pushed through and passed by them . Research about statin drugs, and why are there not drugs that ar e less harmful out there, but yet could be available! It's all money , brother, and FDA + Pharma make lucrative alliance! Have researched any about Aspartame? There is a clear picture what's wrong with Free-Reign-Capitalism! As the funds for research go, it's not the PHARMA profits that finance it! Our taxes do , and the Co's that benefit from them!

      June 23, 2011 at 14:38 | Report abuse |
  28. cargo80

    He looks alot like George Carlin!

    June 22, 2011 at 09:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. Tomcatta2

    Boy, the right sure has a field day with this kind of topic... How is it that everyone can watch these insurance comanies dictate medical care to the doctors, and even the EXTENT OF YOUR PREVENTATIVE CARE, and believe that there is no problem with Health Care? Fixing Health Care is actually as simple as making the insurance companies actually provide you just what they pedal...HEALTH "INSURANCE", not health "well we'll cover you if you get a cold (with 3 opinions, and a limit on what brands you can use, and the stores you can go to, and the days you can go there)...We've gotten away from Doctors treating you, giving you the bill, and that's what insurance covers.... Now the insurance companies pretty much tell everyone what they can and can't do, even the medical community has to ASK rather than SAY. That's not broken??? A Doctor knows what needs to be done, and YOU know what needs to be done, but BIG MOMMA AND DADDY say we can't do it....awwww, well, go off and wait until your brother develops 2nd degree colon cancer and then gets yelled at by a bunch of ostriches with their heads in the sand who he think it's the first time he's ever been to the damned doctor!

    June 22, 2011 at 10:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. Tony Izuagie

    It is clear that the health care situation in the country is on the verge of crisis and the ONLY solution is a univesal coverage of some kind. USA is the only "industrialized" nation without a universal health care coverage for ALL of its citizens. All the other countries without universal coverage are either failed states, banana repuplics, or nations ruled by thin pot corrupt dictators and that is not a list we should be proud to be on.

    It is clear that the ONLY way to get universal health care coverage is either to mandate its purchase (as we do auto insurance), have a single payer (what some call "socialized" health coverage) or a combination of both, but the current situation is clearly untenable.

    If we are opposed to mandates, and single payer, would we then be okay with hospitals refusing (even emergency) care to those unable to pay or uninsured? Most of us are not mandated by LAW to provide free services at our jobs to those unwilling or unable to pay for them, and our hospitals should not be the ONLY exception to that rule.

    Think America!

    June 22, 2011 at 10:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. Joe D'

    Hey RANDOMGUY- the behavior of JayShelley's brother is more typical of CONSERVATIVE types ["for cash" construction workers, "invincible" young folks who consider themselves Libertarians, etc.]. Liberals tend to do those things that contribute to the good of society- like having insurance and paying their fair share of taxes.
    His experience is a very relevant example- and is but another reason- WHY we need to make all health care insurance. pharma, and hospitals NOT for profit.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. Steve

    Most people leave prison with diseases. Not a smart alternative to seeking free community health clinics.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. Ralph Costello

    It's about the money. Enact a Value Added Tax and dedicate the fund for medical treatment. The tax will reach everyone even those below the tax radar who use the system. Let the poorest file for a refund if you care...but everyone is in the game.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. movitar

    …@MathewG, I just got an $829.99 iPad2 for $83.37 and an awesome $1299 MacBook Air for only $111.93, its being delivered tomorrow. I would be an idiot to paying high prices at places like Walmart or BestBuy when I even sold a 42" HDTV to my boss for $600 that I only paid $77.53 for.
    I use two sites, both are good, SwipeBay.com
    and SnagBids.com

    June 22, 2011 at 10:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. Jim

    The comments from conservatives here is hillarious. They whine that there shouldn't be a government mandate that people buy insurance, then whine that people should buy insurance. The corporations that conservatives support don't do ANYTHING until they're forced to, but they expect the average person to voluntarily decide to buy insurance now for a possible health problem in the future, rather than buy food and housing today. This just show how illogical conservative arguments against "Obamacare" really are.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. Heidi

    The whole point to Obama care is to focus on preventative, primary care as opposed to hospital, terciary care.
    What would you rather pay for- a $10 antibiotic to clear an ear infection or $60,000 to take care of someone with an ear infection that has progressed to a brain abcess.

    Common sense folks. People without health insurance wait it out till it gets really bad and then we end up footing the bill anyhow.

    Guy with chest pain- ignores it till a heart attack. Then who pays for his care (plus he goes bankrupt)

    Approx. 70% of the bankruptcies in the US are tied to some sort of medical issue or crisis.

    Businesses are in the business of being a business- why do they have to provide healthcare?

    Let's be smart and do what basically every other country in the world does.

    It's not just compassionate in the end it actually saves money. If everyone has preventable care things are caught early and not till a late stage. Look at the logic of it all.

    Final note- more and more businesses are proving the cheapest, horrible coverage they can find or having their employees as part time employees at 30 hours a week to avoid coverage. A job does not gaurantee coverage.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Jbugne61

    The fact that this man had to resort to getting put in prison to get health insurance is sickening. Insurance is HORRIBLE in the US. My father is 58, had a great job at a good company and has the "best healthcare­". He has been in the hospital for 9 months. He first became sick in October with a brain infection (which the Drs misdiagnos­ed btw) The day he was supposed to come home (November 4th) He had a massive stroke that he was lucky to even survive. Now, his health insurance, which is supposed to be one of the best in the country, wont cover for him to be in rehab and even worse, NO REHAB IN NEW YORK WOULD TAKE HIM BECAUSE WE WERENT ON MEDICAID!!­!! So now my dad is in NJ in a skilled nursing facility laying in his bed with no rehab because his insurance wont help him. Prior to this event my dad had never had any major health issues that required hospitaliz­ation. This country's healthcare system makes me sick.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. Ed, Spring TX

    This is the Republican version of Obamacare.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. Sgt.Serge

    Law does not go in to effect until 2014!

    June 22, 2011 at 10:13 | Report abuse | Reply
    • jean2009

      Parts of it have already gone into effect. True parts have not, but many have.

      June 22, 2011 at 10:46 | Report abuse |
  40. Ethan

    And what a bunch of transients get thrown in jail for a place to sleep for the night. And a dude in Florida stole from a bank to pay for his electric bill.

    So WHAT!

    June 22, 2011 at 10:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. Rosaadriana

    This is why the mandate is required. If you don't have the mandate, then you have to let these people die or go broke otherwise the system of private insurance does not work.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. Stormiestl

    As a US Citizen, I must say I love Canadian Healthcare. When I was there on two different occasions, I ended up in the hospital. Each time, I offered my insurance card. They refused it and treated me. It cost me NOTHING! I agree with the Canadian's who posted here, Shut up America, you have no clue! Everyone of us deserve to be healthy and not be turned down for health care or have astronomical healthcare bills.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. Heidi

    Insurance should not be tied to a job, ironically the sicked people are unable to work. Where is the logic in that.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. Doug

    Now HOW is someone supposed to pay for health insurance when they are unable to get a steady job!? And this man is old enough that many more employers will reject his application. Food and lodging come first and if you don't have enough money after that you don't get insurance.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. Heidi

    Insurance should not be tied to a job, ironically the sicked people are unable to work.

    Where is the logic in that.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. Mickeyboy

    My question is this: how many of you would be willing to pay more in taxes to ensure that you have good, comprehensive health care for yourselves and your family? I'm retired and living on a pension, but I'd happily pony up for the peace of mind I'd get knowing that I'll always have access to quality treatment and affordable drugs.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:29 | Report abuse | Reply
    • mike

      I agree!. Stop all these stupid wars and start helping our own people. Its pretty sad this man had to do what he did, but like they say you gotta do what you gotta do in order to survive. Here in Fl. illegals get free health care why can't this man??

      June 22, 2011 at 10:36 | Report abuse |
  47. Izzy

    My mom had to quit her job to take of my dad full time when he was dying of Brain Cancer. Thankfully he lasted 2 years. Now my mom is unemployed, 59, and was planning on getting insurance through my father's former employer until should could get Medicare. The company is stopping insuring retireees and spouces due to financial reasons (surprise, surprise). With her pre-existing condition of Rhumatoid Arthritis, she won't be able to get insurance if the HealthCare overhaul is repeal. So to those of you who want to repeal it, what's the answer for her? Oh yes, and simply 'going back to work' isn't such an easy option for an ex-teacher who is 59. Read the papers about education nowdays.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:37 | Report abuse | Reply
    • T Ciccone

      Your case is an excellent reason why the health care law should NOT be repealed. A lot of people whine about it but when health problems happen to a spouse, a child, a parent, or oneself, so many of the naysayers suddenly want the government (or someone) to pay up.

      Everyone should be required to have insurance, thereby lowering the overall cost to individuals. Then, when the unexpected happens, as in your case, you would get effective low cost treatment.

      June 22, 2011 at 10:46 | Report abuse |
    • Jeff

      I want it repealed, but I also want it replaced. I think everyone understands that there needs to be some sort of comprehensive HC reform, so arguing as though folks just want to repeal Obamacare and go back to the way it was is disingenuous at best. Both parties and most every American believes that the insurers shouldn't be able to cap your benefits, or drop you when you get sick. Many people (except the trial lawyer PAC's who contributed heavily to the Dems) also want to get rid of frivilous lawsuits in order to reduce the insurance rates the providers must pay thus reducing what they must BE paid to make a living.

      The reality is, both parties agreed on about 90% of what needed to be done, but they let politics play with the 10% and as a result, we got a bill passed by our so-called representatives in government who never even read it before voting on it. Is that what you consider being "represented" in this day and age.

      As for your specific question about your mother. While I feel badly for the situation she's in, it was a choice she made, was it not? Albeit a choice most of us would've made as well, it was nonetheless a choice. In the context of our ever growing debt and the fact that Medicare is currently unsustainable, I ask you this. Why do you think my 2 year old daughter has some obligation to pay for your mothers healthcare, because that's precisely what this law mandates her to do.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:07 | Report abuse |
    • Martin

      Issy, I agree with you. I have a family member who also has a pre-existing problem who just got great health coverage at a reasonable price per the following news I recently read:
      HHS to Reduce Premiums, Make it Easier for Americans with Pre-Existing Conditions to Get Health Insurance
      Tue, 31 May 2011 00:01:00 -0500
      The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) today announced new steps to reduce premiums and make it easier for Americans to enroll in the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan. Premiums for the Federally-administered Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan (PCIP) will drop as much as 40 percent in 18 States, and eligibility standards will be eased in 23 States and the District of Columbia to ensure more Americans with pre-existing conditions have access to affordable health insurance.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:15 | Report abuse |
    • Informed

      Jeff – I think you're missing the point. Izzy is referring to the part of the law the prevents insurance companies from not accepting people with pre-existing conditions. She's not looking for subsidized health insurance so much as health insurance period! On a side note...what the heck is your 2 year old doing that she's already paying taxes???

      June 22, 2011 at 11:19 | Report abuse |
    • Byron

      I say life sucks, oh well

      June 22, 2011 at 11:23 | Report abuse |
    • Jeff

      Informed, I am not missing any point. I should've added pre-exisitng conditions to the items I listed that people agree on, although there has to be some control over that, otherwise you'll just have people joining a plan to get isolated treatment and then dropping off the plan again, thus transferring the cost to everyone else in that insurance pool.

      As for my 2 year old paying taxes...it's here that you've missed the point. She isn't today, but she will someday. When that day comes, she will most likely be paying a higher rate than we pay today because of the debt we've run up. Medicare isn't funded from today's taxes...in reality nothing is fully funded from today's taxes. That means that our future taxpayers will eventually have to pick up the tab, re: my two year old daughter.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:29 | Report abuse |
    • heyitsme

      Sorry, but with as much as that IS in that bill – it needs to be repealed. Though there are pieces in there that would be benefical – there are items in there that will send us into more of a $$ tailspin. I would like to point to the inclusion that now they have raised the ceiling to $64000 a year for a married couple to obtain. That's 3 times the legal limit, when it's only supposed to be for the poor. This means there will be tons of people on the plan then what actually need to be there. Who filps that bill? We will flip that bill. Do not believe me? goggle it – its all there in black and white. Though I feel for your situation, this, overall, is not a good thing. You only see the parts that are benfical to you, and not the entire picture.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:42 | Report abuse |
    • Paulie


      June 22, 2011 at 12:20 | Report abuse |
    • momomiester

      This country hates pikers. If you are going to rob a bank, you ask for a lot of money. That way if he got away with it, he would have money to pay for his health problems. If he gets caught, which he did, the result is the same. This guy is an idiot. The sentence isn't a scale based on the amount of money you get off the heist. I am wondering if he was hired by someone to gain national recognition to further the socialization of medicine.

      June 22, 2011 at 13:10 | Report abuse |
    • Disgusted

      Not with the man, but for the reasons- I know why he did what he did. My husband has had a kidney transplant and has half of his lung mass due to a disease. One dr appt for him is 10k- any of you want to pull that out of your pocket once a month? He LOST for Medicaid(his secondary) because he wanted to WORK. (Medicare only allows someone to make 1000 GROSS a month and work no more than 80 hours a week) but now that he is working a full time job because he was tired of feeling like a bum and is now risking his health everyday this means he will lose Medicare as well and have NO INSURANCE. He is 31 years old and has had this issue for 10 years now. So for those of you who think you are holier than thou can shove it.

      June 22, 2011 at 15:06 | Report abuse |
    • Disgusted

      T Ciccone– Yes it lowers the cost, which is great. But it causes doctors to not feel so obligated towards their job. Their payment goes down and their long hard earned years in college (i do hate drs) will not be worth the pay anymore, which in a way could have better effects to the only drs that go through it will be ones that actually care. However, the longest kidney transplant to last is 8 years last I have heard. He has had his for two of those years. Since he is working now because he wants to live a normal life while he can and he loses that kidney for some God forsaken reason and have to go back on dialysis 3xs a week- Insurance will be unlikely to take him back so cheaply- also if the health care bill does go through then he will not take any kind of medical priority over anyone with the common cold. Drs will be overloaded with hypochondriac (SP)? patients and no longer have as much time (seeing as they dont really now anyways) to see people like my husband or Izzys mother who needs her hands to do anything..

      June 22, 2011 at 15:53 | Report abuse |
  48. John Doe

    50% of Americans pay no taxes and over 50% collect government benefits. We are a welfare state.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:40 | Report abuse | Reply
    • vanessa

      Or... we're in a recession of a magnitude not seen since the Great Depression. Poor does not = bad person. Rich does not = good person. What a blessing it must be for you, to be able to see the world through such a simplistic, childish lens.

      June 22, 2011 at 10:47 | Report abuse |
    • T Ciccone

      Do you plan on taking Social Security benefits when you retire? That's a government benefit.

      June 22, 2011 at 10:48 | Report abuse |
    • John Doe

      Social security should be for people ho need it. Not people collecting $100,000 per year in pensions or who have $10 million in the bank. But as it stands now, even Ross Perot gets a social security check. Stupid.

      June 22, 2011 at 10:51 | Report abuse |
    • vanessa

      Aww, you called me dumb!! That is just adorable. Why do you assume I want or need a job? My husband and I are in that 50% who ARE paying taxes, and AREN'T on any sort of government assistance. And yet– I still don't begrudge others who need assistance. You may go back to coloring, now.

      June 22, 2011 at 10:54 | Report abuse |
    • John Doe

      Vanessa, you do not pay taxes. It's fun to pretend, but those of us who actually write checks for tens of thousands of dollars to the IRS don't sit around thinking of new ways for the government to waste money, nor do we fall for CNN sob stories in a country that spends more per capita on healthcare than any other on Earth. He is eligible for social security disability, medicaid and a variety of other services. I do love to color though.

      June 22, 2011 at 10:57 | Report abuse |
    • rdross80

      "But there are plenty of jobs out there for normal people."

      There is? According to Bureau of Labor Statistics there are 13.9 million people unemployed (more than that actually, since that doesn't include people who are no longer receiving unemployment), but in May only 54,000 jobs were added to the economy. So where are all of those jobs for the rest of of those 13 million people?

      June 22, 2011 at 10:58 | Report abuse |
    • vanessa

      You are a true Renaissance man, Dave! I will add "crystal ball gazing" to your list of artistic/scholastic accomplishments. I had no idea that you would be able to access our accountant's records, from just a CNN blog. *oooohh, aahhhhhhhh* You have no idea how much we pay. Get over yourself. The fact that you are a bitter old miser is your problem, not mine.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:00 | Report abuse |
    • John Doe

      There are millions of jobs listed on Monster right now, there are hiring signs at Target, Walmart, and there are six pages of employment ads in my local newspaper. It is never easy to get a job, but it is always possible. My brother in law collected unemployment for 2 years because it was easier than getting a job. When it ran out, he got a job in two months.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:05 | Report abuse |
    • John Doe

      Vanessa, put down the bottle. It's not even lunch time yet. Who's Dave? Your secret friend, or your imaginary accountant?

      June 22, 2011 at 11:06 | Report abuse |
    • HoustonSteve

      Well, if Ross Perot payed into this large group retirement plan (social security), then why should he not be able to collect? That be the case, then he should at least be able to opt out. You should not expect people to contribute if they have no expectation of collecting anything. That is not just a bad retirement investment, its robbery!

      June 22, 2011 at 11:08 | Report abuse |
    • Bruce

      Rich does not = bad person either.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:10 | Report abuse |
    • Jeff

      John, I'm with your for the most part, but you do realize that every deduction you take is a form of government welfare, correct? An example is the mortgage interest deduction, which is vehemently protected by the realtors PAC. The basis for this is to "encourage homeownership". Um...who's doing the "encouraging" here? The taxpayers are because anyone who avails themselves (like me) of this are allowing their fellow taxpayers to help fund their home.

      Can I assume that you take no deductions on the taxes you pay (I too "write" a healthy 5 digit check every year), or do you just not consider yourself to be on the dole?

      The true fix for our country is to make EVERYONE pay taxes by lowering rates and getting rid of ALL deductions and/or tax credits. Until that happens, we're all essentially on one form or another of welfare.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:13 | Report abuse |
    • rdross80

      Show me a link that says there are million of jobs on Monster.com. I just checked and couldn't find anything that said how many listings there are. So there are a few department stores and some jobs listed in the classifieds where you live. How many people are unemployed in your area compared to the amount of jobs available? Are those six pages of jobs enough to employ them all? As for working at places like Walmart, they don't provide health insurance for the majority of their workers, and the wages they do provide aren't enough to take care of a family or mortgage.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:15 | Report abuse |
    • John Doe

      Jeff, you've been brainwashed!! You think your money belongs to the government and that a tax deduction is "welfare." Your money belongs to you and the government does not "give it" to you. A tax deduction is not welfare. The government taking my money and giving it to other people is welfare.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:17 | Report abuse |
    • John Sutherland

      So you feel it is alright for your brother and law to abuse the system but then have the nerve to come and try to start talking about people who truly need these benefits?

      June 22, 2011 at 11:18 | Report abuse |
    • JA

      @vanessa, thank you for that comment, I couldn't agree more. My father lost his job 2 years ago and is going blind, my mother is unable to work due to health reasons. My father was an executive at a tech company making a very substantial income but now that he's basically on welfare his old friends and even some of my extended family members look at him in disgust refusing to acknowledge him or my mother. It's amazing how people can be so cold when money is involved, absolutely disgusting. My parents are dirt poor but are still amazing people. Just because your wealthy and have some form of golden parachute never designates you as a "good person".

      June 22, 2011 at 11:21 | Report abuse |
    • Jim

      John Doe – you sound like a very bitter and possible dangerous person. You also sound like Capitalist123. I'll say the same thing to you that I said to Capitalist123 (probably the same person anyway), your rantings sound like what I expect Timothy McVey sounded before he blew up a building in Oklahoma. "Government is bad," "greed is good," "taxes are stealing."

      If you hate this country so much, move to Somalia. I hear they don't "steal" your money in taxes, and don't interfer with "real" capitalists with a few guns and boats. As I said to Capitalist123, start a fund for your one-way ticket to Somalia and I'll contribute.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:32 | Report abuse |
    • Dave

      50% of people do not pay taxes? That is not correct. I see you just make up information and pretend its the truth.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:35 | Report abuse |
    • Jeff

      No John, I haven't been brainwashed. I fully realize that the money I earn belongs to me and is mine. I also, however, keenly understand that for a society to flourish, the members of such must contribute financially and in other ways. While I'll forever be a proponent of small and limited government, I understand the necessity for it nonetheless.

      That said, there are laws passed stating how much my financial contribution to society is to be. Those laws are passed by the very people I elect to represent me. I have not paid close to those posted rates in my entire lifetime, nor have you. We have not done so because there are specific powerful groups that manipulate government at every turn. These PAC's do not care about the overall wellbeing of society, just that they "get theirs".

      Bottom line is, there are stated rates that each person is to owe the gov't. The 50% you quoted to start this discussion that pay no taxes do so because of credits and deductions. That you are arguing with me and calling me brainwashed seems to indicate that you are in favor of these deductions/credits because they allow me to keep my money. In the same breath you castigate those who avail themselves of these deductions/credits and end up paying nothing. Which do you favor John...everyone paying a share, or having your precious deductions? You simply can't have it both ways.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:37 | Report abuse |
    • E

      I challenge you to statistically back up those numbers.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:38 | Report abuse |
    • PRISM 1234

      Unless you include those freeloaders who rob the working class to fill their banking accounts, who also find every loophole in the law not to pay their taxes... unless you include those vultures, don't mention the rest! Yes, we have socialism here, but it is the wealthy, those in high positions who take a high ride, and live of the back of the working class ! There is a new name we need to give to our present system in this country : NEO-Feudalism! And the way we are going it's becoming more and more evident!

      June 22, 2011 at 11:38 | Report abuse |
    • Myles

      95% of quoted percentages are made up in someone's simple little mind.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:48 | Report abuse |
    • D

      Oops, John Doe's FACTS are wrong. It's not "50% pay NO taxes", it's "pay no Federal Income Taxes". HUGE difference. That 50% still pays most of the same other taxes that everyone else pays. Payroll (if they have a job), sales, property, etc.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:53 | Report abuse |
    • Tom Foolery

      Actually, the number is around 47% that don't pay any income taxes at all. This is one of the main reasons to call for a lowering of rates and broadening of the base. Crybabies who currently live off of others don't want that, but it IS the just thing to do. Now of that 47%, many do pay into Medicare and Social Security, but those are contributory insurance programs, and out of that group, the people collect back what they pay in many times over, so to claim this means they "pay taxes" is flat out wrong.

      Now, on the subject of deductions, I agree with John Doe that this isn't "welfare" and that his definition of welfare is correct. However, those deductions are corrupt and unjust. There is no justification for taxing people unequally based on their own free decisions with their own money. Every single deduction should be abolished, and the rates set appropriately. It is entirely because of the treasonously corrupt tax code that many of the richest pay close to zero, along with nearly half the population, while the remaining people, mostly the hardest workers in the society, get stuck paying far more than what is equitable.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:54 | Report abuse |
    • Barry

      John dope, where are you getting all of those statistic. Do you just make them up to fit your self centered arguement? Obviously you've been so obsessed with self that you have forgotten what it means to be a human being. Had you ever sacrificed in your life I don't think you would be spouting your egomanical diatribes. Had you any since of belonging you wouldn't make assumptions about ppl that make a blog statement. Being 12 yrs military I've seen first hand what the squaller that low income family's around the world live in. Thats what your suggesting should happen to our fellow Americans when you spout your idiocy. Being part of Operational teams i know for a fact that the team is only as strong as it's weakest link. Think beyond yourself and realize that if the present situation continues with health care and the economy those ppl you would subject to a slow and agonizing death, will come knockin on your door in this life or the next. Oh and since we are name calling your a P.O.S. thank you that is all!

      June 22, 2011 at 12:23 | Report abuse |
    • Paulie

      I dont really have a problem with that its the ones who didnt pay into the system their whole lives and collect on it I have a problem with.

      June 22, 2011 at 12:26 | Report abuse |
  49. Julia Byrd

    American health care system, gettin' rich of the sick and dyin' wow! Now that's a country you can be proud of. America's immoral health care system, if you don't have health insurance you better damn sure have a hand basket.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:40 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Alison

      Yeah, but "Obamacare" was the system with death panels. Riiiiiiiiiiiight...

      June 22, 2011 at 11:36 | Report abuse |
    • E

      Feel free to relocate and try to find another nation if you feel they would provide you with better peace of mind. Happy hunting! (you will soon realize we have it the best out of ALL of them, but I'll wait for you to do some research and come up with that on your own)

      June 22, 2011 at 11:40 | Report abuse |
    • Alison

      E, sure we have the best. IF you can afford it.

      June 22, 2011 at 12:01 | Report abuse |
    • Paulie

      Will Obamacare not profit off the sick and dying? Last I checked the whole reason Obamacare was passed was so that insurance companies dont LOSE THEIR PROFITS!!!

      June 22, 2011 at 12:21 | Report abuse |
    • Mindy Jane

      Sure! I will be relocating to Canada soon. Keep on saying 'oh we are the USA and we have the best health care in the world'. Keep on dreaming. The United States ranks 33rd in the world in terms of quality of health care. Don't make me laugh.

      June 22, 2011 at 12:39 | Report abuse |
    • momomiester

      It is dumb people like you that don't understand motivation. What incentive for new research or medicine if there is no profit? You going to spend 400k on school to do research, risk capital for free? We have some of the best care in the world. Is it perfect? no.. Can it be better? Yes You, and the overly praised mentally challenged Obama think by chastising business, you are going to create innovation. If that is the case, why did Russia fail? Why is it the most dynamic economy in the world China is doing so well?

      June 22, 2011 at 13:16 | Report abuse |
    • Soccer_guy

      E ...if we have it so good then why did the government feel the need to have such a dramatic overhaul of healthcare?

      June 22, 2011 at 15:17 | Report abuse |
  50. Dave

    Gee. he could have opted to get a job or walk into any emergency room and get free treatment just like the illegals do. Just had to rob a bank huh. Publicity stunt he's looking for his 15 min, hero to the unwashed masses that believe the myth that the poor can't get free health care in the US, they get it all day every day at the expense of the productive.

    June 22, 2011 at 10:40 | Report abuse | Reply
    • T Ciccone

      An emergency room visit isn't going to cure his long-term problems. That's why he was hoping for sustained treatment while in prison.

      June 22, 2011 at 10:44 | Report abuse |
    • vanessa

      You are an awful person. Did you even read the article? He tried.

      June 22, 2011 at 10:44 | Report abuse |
    • Jen

      That is not how it works. You can get access to the ER, but all the ER can do is stabilize you and provide enough treatment to send you home. Any follow up care is NOT free. Not even for your dreaded illegals.

      June 22, 2011 at 10:47 | Report abuse |
    • Brian

      There is only one problem to going to the emergency room with no health Insurance they can only fix acute injuries not cronic illnesses. What are people that have cancer supposed to do. You cant go to the emergenct room for that.

      June 22, 2011 at 10:49 | Report abuse |
    • D

      Dave, let me explain something to you. I see these comments about 'going to the emergency room for free healthcare', that's something you've heard on Fox. Let me tell you what I see happen daily basis. You get treated, you are uninsured, so they add about 20% cost. When you leave the hospital, the hospital sells your bill to a collector who adds another 25%, now this collector pursues you relentlessly, if you are lucky they only garnish your wages. But in most cases, it gets sent to an attorney who specializes in recovery, and they tack on their fee's now as well. Then what they do is attach and come after EVERYTHING you own, down to the last 5 bucks. Why do you think so many go bankrupt from healthcare every day? If people REALLY got free treatment, you wouldn't see that now would you? I think people that believe that, seriously need to change the channel..cause ironically, they all watch one channel......so what does that tell you.

      June 22, 2011 at 11:40 | Report abuse |
    • Angie

      Actually the free care that one could receive in the emergency room only covers emergency situations not chronic issues like cancer etc... and by the way we-the taxpayers are paying for that ER visit, and it's probably alot more expensive than him getting treatment from a doctor in a prison. Either way we are paying. I'm thankful for the healthcare bill,my daughter would be without insurance right now as her employer does not offer it.

      June 22, 2011 at 13:07 | Report abuse |
    • Paulie

      If the guy had no job wouldnt he qualify for medicaid? Listen I have a niece and some friends who are bank tellers and I dont like the idea of anyone holding up a bank do you?

      June 22, 2011 at 13:49 | Report abuse |
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