Let’s talk about Stefania Fochi and her future empanada empire for a moment here.
Stefania is the latest Obamacare “success story” being touted by the administration. She’s taking a gamble and launching a business making empanadas. And you are helping her hedge some of her bets.
Let’s let Stefania speak:
Hi. I’m Stefania Fochi. I’m 25 years old, I live in Sarasota, Fla., and for the past four years I didn’t have health insurance.
It made me very nervous, because I work with heavy machinery when I make empanadas and pasta in my family’s business. There have been times when I’ve been using the big 2,000-pound kneader and almost caught my hand and thought: If I had to go to the emergency room, what would I do?
Also there’s a history of ovarian cancer in my mother’s family: My great-grandma died of it, my grandma had it and my Mom had it, so I need to keep up on the checkups. But I wasn’t able to because I didn’t have health insurance. I rarely was able to go to a doctor in the four years since I quit my job with a corporation to start an empanada business.
Now I have health insurance that gives me peace of mind and financial security. I logged onto the Health Insurance Marketplace at HealthCare.gov and found an affordable policy with excellent coverage. Because I was eligible for lower costs, my policy costs only $98 a month, with a deductible of $750.
Having health insurance is going to help me achieve my goals of creating an empanada empire because I will have the peace of mind knowing that I don’t have to spend any time worrying about what if something happens to me. I will be able to focus on what’s important, which is going to be my business.
We opened our first pasta and empanada store on Monday. Having a business is hard. We work a lot but it is definitely a labor of love. And having health insurance is absolutely making it possible for me to chase my dream.
Now, I like empanadas, although I don’t know if the first lady would approve. And I like Stefania. She’s the type of gal that makes America great, assuming she’s not using trans fats in her empanadas.
But Stefania’s story helps us understand what’s at the root of Obamacare. It’s not just about helping the destitute uninsured get health care. It’s about redistributing wealth. Your wealth. And about relieving Americans of personal responsibility for their own wellbeing, so that they are dependent on the government.
Stefania says she had a job with a corporation, by which she means to indicate she had health insurance. She made a choice – a choice – to quit the job, forgo health insurance, and attempt to become the Sarasota Empanada Queen.
And so for four years she went without insurance, until Obama had you pick up the tab for it. At $98 per month, it appears Stefania is receiving direct subsidies for her premiums because her income is low enough to qualify for it.
Stefania, who seems to be a bright woman, had other options. She is quite young, and she could have stuck it out in her “job with a corporation” for a few more years and saved enough money to buy her own health insurance, or at least pay for the checkups she says she needs.
Or, she could have convinced a bank or some other outside investors that indeed the world needs more empanadas and will trek to her store to buy them. She could even have brought a plate of them to the bank president, who after a couple of bites might have written a check then and there.
Instead, she has tapped the generosity of taxpayers, who are the ones “absolutely making it possible for me to chase my dream.”
Many, maybe most, of these taxpayers are not chasing their dream. They are forced to show up at 9:00 AM weekdays and perhaps some weekends too to work in jobs they don’t like much and take orders from bosses they’d rather kick in the ass. Because they have to put empanadas, as well as healthier items, on the table for their families.
I don’t blame Stefania for taking advantage of the system that’s been offered to her. But before she has sold even a single empanada, she should remember, someone somewhere has already paid for it.