News

Deadlines: The government gets blurry on their definition

clarkBy CHRISTINA CLARK
Columnist

Being an adult means you have to read the news. It doesn’t mean you have to pay really close attention to it, but it means that when there’s a nationwide deadline to register for something or submit something (like taxes, or now for government health care), you kind of have to do it.

Sure, there are extensions and exceptions (thankfully), but in general, it’s a deadline that has to be made.

Communications students know all about deadlines: making them, pushing them, extending them. On a rare occasion: missing them.

As one of those students, I’m familiar with every one of those concepts, sadly.

Luckily, making deadlines is the one I’m most familiar with. But it doesn’t mean that that always slides by. Having taken some personal time to detox from most of the news and politics (every once in a while, you have to), I’d almost forgotten about the Affordable Care Act and its deadline.

Making that deadline supposedly meant that those who made it wouldn’t face a fine for not filing. Then came the news that it had become such a mess for a bit that there was an extension. Lucky break, since I didn’t even check to see what it meant for someone who aged out of their parents policy during the year (the gravy train had to come to an end eventually, I suppose). We’ll have to see what happens and what continues to happen with the government health care.

What I’d love to see, personally, is rates go even lower for individuals. Private health insurance has soared out of control over the past few years. In a time when many still look outside their own country for a less expensive option for both elective and life-saving procedures, it really makes sense to reform. Those procedures should be
made more affordable than a round trip plane tickets, hotel cost, and procedural cost, paired with an extended stay for recovery and monitoring in a foreign country. When that costs less than going to the local hospital, there seems to be something amiss.

Health care is expensive, and getting good health care is even more costly. My personal hope is with the nationwide health care coming into place that rates begin to slowly drop, both from inside the system and outside of it. As much of a pipe dream as that feels to be, making preventative care affordable again, at the very least, is something to be encouraged.

But aside from all of that, the other point I’m trying to make is that as an adult, you now have to read or watch the news. Or else you’d never know that taxes were coming due April 15!

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