I reported my first encounter with this fraud here. Readers may recall how I was stonewalled by the Humana representative on the phone. They had no application on file, after all, so he promised to send my objection to their dis-enrollment department. You may imagine my surprise when I received an enrollment card at the mailing address I never gave them, soon followed by a payment coupon book.
I’m not a confrontational person, which is to say I’m not aggressive, but I do have a short fuse and a fierce temper, maybe a inheritance from my Scotch-Irish-German ancestors, so I let myself calm down for a couple of days and then called them. This time I got a lady at Humana who was nearly as provoked as I was. I daresay she had been dealing with seniors like me for days. She immediately told me that the company was not responsible, that I had been enrolled by Medicare. Oh boy, I lost my temper all over again.
The state has me in a box labeled dependent, and they can do with me as they please. While I had refused Medicare Part D, the drug "benefit," when it was offered, they decided to enroll me anyway and they gave the contract on me to Humana. So I called the SSA, which is slick and easy enough to scare you, and "opted out" of the drug benefit program once more. I received a written confirmation of that within a week.
Now that’s interesting. If they can promptly confirm that I’m "out," why didn’t they inform me that I was "in"? This saga began with a bill, after all, not a notice. Did some bureaucrat gamble that X% of seniors would simply pay the bill?
I thought I was finished with this nonsense, then I received a bill and a notice from some collection agency. Humana wants $42 for insuring me from the time Medicare enrolled me until I dis-enrolled myself. My member number continues to be a set of zeros, which means I was never a member; indeed I’ve never done business with Humana in my life. So what do I do with this?
I thought about it. We have two bureaucracies here, state and insurance, that have been hand-in-pocket with each other since 1965, and any sense of right and wrong has long since vanished. Sue them? Oh, sure. But it is fraud, or more specifically mail fraud, and it is interstate fraud, so I filed complaints with the USPS and the ICC. How the four sets of bureaucracy deal with it, or not, remains to be seen.
I can imagine five lawyers sitting around a conference table discussing this:
Insurance lawyer: You authorized this.
Medicare lawyer: Yes, but you agreed to do it.
USPS lawyer: You can’t use the mail in this manner.
DOJ lawyer: The practice must cease. We’ll cover up the complaints.
I’ll never know the truth, of course. We are ruled by unaccountable, nameless, faceless bureaucrats who care nothing about the consequences of their decrees. It’s up to us to recognize fraud when it visits us, and refuse to accept it. I won’t be paying that bill.
Robert Klassen [send him mail] retired from a forty-year career in critical-care respiratory therapy. He is the author of five books, including Atlantis: A Novel about Economic Government, and Economic Government, which describe a solution to the problem of political government. Here’s his web site.