Someone I don't know took exception to my brief post about Mr. Obama's final message to Iowans the night before the caucuses in 2008. My correspondent is understandably distressed and frustrated by the series of personal catastrophes he's endured in the last couple of years. I wish him well and, more, I want to do all I can to ensure that we as a people do right by him and his family — that we do right by each other.
I'm sorry you lost your job and home and health coverage. I can't think of a single way in which that doesn't suck. I'm sure you're aware that Republicans in Congress, and a few Democrats, have fought tooth and nail to block the President from extending and expanding loan modification programs. Or maybe you're not aware of that, but it's in the public record. And your family is paying the price very directly. Again: Sorry.
I don't have a job. I quit my last day job a dozen years ago to operate a one-person company. I've been on my own for health coverage since June 2000. If you think things are bad now -- and they still are -- you would have soiled your trousers over the last decade. When my COBRA coverage timed-out, the insurer I'd been with for most of a decade said they would be happy to extend the same plan to me for $6,000 a month. In case you think that's a typo, let me say it differently: My insurance company said they would cover me going forward for a premium of $72,000 a year. I was so shocked by that number that I just laughed at the young woman on the phone -- so loud that I felt like I needed to apologize. She didn't make up that number.