The Other ObamaCare Shoe Drops on Grumman Retirees


Before getting started, let’s begin with a brief history for people who are unfamiliar with Grumman (now Northrop Grumman). Grumman was once the largest employer on Long Island, having at one time over 35,000 people on Long Island working on projects as varied as the Lunar Module, which landed Americans on the Moon, wing sets for the Space Shuttle Orbiter and, of course, most of the Navy Aircraft that flew with our carrier fleet since World War 2. There are now less then 200 active Northrop Grumman employees on Long Island, and these will soon be released or moved to other parts of the Country.

The first shoe came when thousands of Grumman Retirees were notified that the premiums for some of the Medicare supplement plans offered would increase by 40%. Some Retirees were also told that their primary care physicians might no longer be on their networks.

While many Grumman Retirees anxiously waited to find out how the various mandates of Obamacare would affect their health insurance status, the other shoe finally dropped.

A recent letter from Grumman informed the Retirees that as of August 1st, Grumman would no longer administer the Retirees Health Care Insurance. The major points of the letter informed them that Grumman had contracted with a private exchange to help them find new policies and would supplement some Retiree’s new healthcare choice with a $1200 a year credit.

Grumman, as a smart business entity, and one that always had a paternal view of its Employees, had the good sense not to simply let the Retirees flounder in the mess that is the Obamacare Government exchange.

I cannot say that I, a Grumman veteran of 34 years, was surprised by the news. During the Obamacare debate (?), many of us who spent the time to read portions of the Bill, implored Representatives Bishop, Israel, and Senators Schumer and Gillibrand to read this complicated Bill. During town hall meetings, it became obvious that many of the people who tried to get answers to questions knew more about the Bill then the New York Democrats who would be voting for it.

Some of us realized early on, that this Bill simply did not reform healthcare as promised, but affected individuals in ways that the Adminstration was not being honest about.

We wrote to try to convince these New York Democrats to reduce the large scope of this unmanageable bill. We suggested, as did many of the Republicans in Congress, to approach healthcare reform with a series of simple understandable bills. These individual Bills would address the major flaws in the existing system in a systematic way.

Unfortunately, under the leadership, bullying and bribery of Reid and Pelosi and a Democratic majority in both houses, these suggestions never made it to the floor of Congress; and the bill was passed into law with many of the Democrats who voted for it not having read it. Remember Pelosi’s comment “we have to pass the bill in order to know what’s in it”.

Now that many of the dire predictions by the T.E.A. Party, Conservatives, Republicans and FOX News are becoming reality, the same New York Democrats who voted for this bill are now saying that the law can be “mended”. Not so! The President has already attempted, on several occasions to do this with Executive Orders and has only complicated things more. There is no mending this Law.

The consequences of this Law on personal liberties, economics and employment have been so far reaching in the short time that it has been in effect, that it must be totally repealed, and a practical approach to healthcare reform implemented.

To those who say it would be impossible to repeal, I point to another unpopular law, which was actually made into an Amendment to the Constitution, the 18th Amendment (Prohibition) and the Volstead Act, which addressed how to enforce the 18th Amendment’s provisions.

This Amendment had such unexpected and unpopular consequences that it was repealed by the 27th Amendment after being the law of the land for approximately 13 years. Have faith in the American People to do the right thing, in spite of the politicians.


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