|June 28, 2012
As this is written, the nation is awaiting a U.S. Supreme Court decision on President Barack Obama’s signature healthcare law that was passed by a Democrat- controlled Congress in 2010.
The 26 states challenging the individual insurance mandate of Obamacare rely on a simple point: Under its power to regulate "commerce," Congress can regulate only transactions taking place in the economy. The states argue that Congress has no power to regulate non-activity- to regulate persons not engaged in commerce by forcing them to buy products they otherwise would not purchase, like health insurance.
That constitutional reasoning is why many observers feel the Supreme Court will at least rule the individual mandate unconstitutional. The good news, if that occurs, is that the mandate is the lynchpin mechanism which funds probably 80 percent of the law. With that mechanism gone, Obamacare falls like a house of cards.
It is instructive to note that the president and the Democrat leadership in Congress hastily passed this law, circumventing traditional congressional procedures and transparency, knowing they were risking violating the Constitution – but all in the name of saddling the American people with their version of healthcare Utopia. It was a reckless, risky move – one that polls indicate remains deeply unpopular with the American people even two years later.
If the Supreme Court overturns all of the law – and the American Seniors Association hopes that it does- the nation will still have a healthcare problem and solutions will be needed. The cost of healthcare will still be out of control. But the good news is that the national debate will shift to finding free market solutions that will bring costs down. The debate should focus on giving decisions to individuals rather than the federal government. Politicians should be talking about keeping solutions closer to consumers and individuals.
Rest assured, therefore, that the American Seniors Association will aggressively speak out on these and other issues as this national debate moves forward toward Election Day, November 6.
Chief Executive Officer
American Seniors Association
|Is the Mediterranean diet the secret to good health?
|The people of the Mediterranean are not as interested as Americans in the idea of dieting. They enjoy food, yet they generally have better health than Americans. Since the Mediterranean embraces more than 20 countries, each with its own cuisine, the diet, loosely known as the "Mediterranean Diet" is really a fusion of the many foods consumed by the nations bordering the sea.
The diet is rich in vegetables, salads, fish, breads, cheese and pastas. No wonder they enjoy food! Yet, the diet is so healthy that the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) used it as a model in their famous DASH Study (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension), which confirmed that the Mediterranean diet was healthier than they typical American diet and effectively reduced blood pressure.
Olive oil is the anchor of the Mediterranean diet. No other natural oil has as much monounsaturated fat. When drizzled on salads and vegetables or grilled fish, it adds a pleasing aroma and texture. But olive oil by itself is somewhat bland and is always accompanied by liberal amounts of salt.
In fact, salt is central to the Mediterranean diet – olives can only be consumed if they’re soaked in brine for weeks. Feta cheese is cured and stored in salt brine. Capers, anchovies, codfish and roe are all Mediterranean staples routinely packed in salt. The breads, pastries and sauces of the Mediterranean are all high in salt. Virgin olive oil, so cherished for making salads, is slightly bitter because of all the unique antioxidants it contains, so salt is especially important for improving its taste. Greek taramosalata is made from salted codfish roe, while tzatziki is made from salted, fresh cucumbers that are drained and added to yogurt; North African baba ghanoush is made of roasted eggplant, blended with tahini, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil and lots of salt. Yet, the people of the Mediterranean, who enjoy all these foods, have the world’s best cardiovascular health.
While some policy makers encourage the public to reduce their salt intake, their advice could have harmful unintended consequences such as discouraging Americans to sky away from this healthy, tasty overall diet. If the government’s salt reduction strategy were implemented and followed, the net consequence would be far fewer people consuming a Mediterranean style diet and enjoying its critical health benefits – reducing heart disease, obesity, diabetes and improving cognitive function.
For more information on salt and health go to www.salthealth.org
To help you get started with a healthy Mediterranean meal, try the following recipe:
North African Salad
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus 1/4 cup
2 to 3 cloves garlic, crushed and minced
1 pound box Israeli couscous (or any tiny pasta such as ziti)
3 cups chicken stock
2 lemons, juiced
1 lemon, zested
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup chopped fresh mint leaves
1/3 cup finely chopped Italian parsley
1/3 cup dried chopped dates
1/4 cup slivered almonds or pistachios, toasted
In a medium saucepan, warm 3 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and saute for 1 minute. Add the couscous and toast until lightly browned, stirring often, about five minutes. Carefully add the stock, and the juice of one lemon and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, until the couscous is tender, but still firm or al dente to the bite, stirring occasionally, about seven to nine minutes. Drain the couscous.
In a large bowl, toss the cooked couscous with the remaining olive oil, remaining lemon juice, zest, salt and pepper and let cool. Once the couscous is room temperature, add the fresh herbs, dried dates and almonds/pistachios. Toss well and serve.
For a printable or savable version, click here.
If you are 62 years of age or older with equity in your home, then a reverse mortgage may be right for you. BofI Federal Bank can provide you with the right information and facts to uncover the possibilities of allowing your home equity to work for you!
Bank products and services are offered by BofI Federal Bank. Deposit accounts held at ASA Banking Center are FDIC insured through BofI Federal Bank. All deposit accounts held at BofI Federal Bank are combined and insured under the same FDIC Certificate 35546. Deposit accounts held at ASA Banking Center are not separately insured by the FDIC from other deposit accounts held at BofI Federal Bank.
In order to qualify for a free travel bag you must complete a full reverse mortgage application. Offer ends July 31, 2012. Cannot be combined with any other special promotion or offer. Available to active ASA members only.
|Are Your Medical Records Accessible And Up to Date?
In the case of an emergency situation, are you prepared to give doctors potentially life-saving information about your medical history? What about your family members?
ASA offers you the opportunity to manage your own healthcare by providing access to all your medical records with more ease and convenience than ever before. You can now store and organize critical health information by keeping all your vital pharmaceutical and medical records in a single location which only you or your authorized family members can access from any computer anywhere in the world. Plus, prescription history will be periodically updated from many of the leading pharmacies including CVS Caremark, Walmart, Target, Publix, Winn-Dixie and Kroger.
With the ASA Personal Health Record you can:
- Keep an accurate listing of all past and present medications and dosages
- Share all your prescription information with each of your doctors.
- Keep track of all medical appointments.
- Eliminate unnecessary paperwork when visiting new doctors.
- Access your information from you mobile phone (Coming Soon!)
- Authorize your spouse, children or caregiver access to your records in case of an emergency.
Because health and wellness are important, ASA members can now sign up for a "free for life" ASA Personal Health Record (an annual value of $59.95).
Take charge of your health today by clicking here to sign up for your lifetime ASA Personal Health Record.
|Reward yourself this summer!
|Reward yourself this summer with the American Seniors Association Visa Signature® Card. Apply today and get a $100 Statement Credit with first purchase!¹ Plus, you’ll earn one point for every net dollar spend everywhere Visa is accepted, whether you use your ASA Visa Signature® for everyday purchases or that dream vacation you’ve been waiting to take. Redeem points for cash back, travel, gift cards, and more!
The ASA Visa Signature® Card also provides great benefits, including:
- 0% Intro APR² on purchases and balance transfers for fifteen billing cycles, and after that a variable APR, currently 9.99% – 21.99%²
- No annual fee²
- No preset spending limit,³ and no limit to the number of points you can earn
- 24-hour concierge service⁴
- VIP access to special entertainment, dining and sporting events like the Super Bowl and Olympic Games
- Signature privileges, including merchant upgrades, offers and savings!
- Zero Fraud Liability Protection,⁵ Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver and Travel Accident Insurance, Warranty Manager, Travel and Emergency Assistance⁶
Plus, with every Visa Signature Card purchase, U.S. Bank will make a contribution to the American Seniors Association!
Click here to apply today
Hurry, offer ends 9/30/2012.
¹ Accounts must be open and in good standing (not past due) to earn statement credit.
²The 0% introductory APR applies to purchases and balance transfers [made within 30 days of account opening] and is valid for the first fifteen billing cycles. The introductory rate does not apply to cash advances. Thereafter, the APR may vary and as of 6-01-12, the undiscounted variable APR for Purchases and Balance Transfers is 9.99% – 21.99% based on your creditworthiness. The variable APR for Cash Advances is 23.99%. Cash Advance fee: 4% of each advance amount, $10 minimum. Convenience Check fee: 3% of each check amount, $5 minimum. Cash Equivalent fee: 4% of each cash amount, $20 minimum. Balance Transfer fee: 3% of each transfer amount, $5 minimum. There is a $2 minimum finance charge where interest is due. The annual fee is $0. Foreign Transaction fee:2% of each foreign purchase transaction or foreign ATM advance transaction in U.S. Dollars. 3% of each foreign purchase transaction or foreign ATM advance transaction in a Foreign Currency. We may change APRs, fees, and other Account terms in the future based on your experience with U.S. Bank National Association ND and its affiliates as provided under the Cardmember Agreement and applicable law. We apply your minimum payment to balances with lower APRs first. Amounts paid overthe minimum payment will be applied in the order of highest to lowest APR balances.
³ No preset spending limit does not mean unlimited spending. Individual transactions are authorized by card issuer based on factors such as account history, credit record and payment resources. Card issuer will preset an upper limit for revolving balances and cash advances.
⁴ Cardmembers are responsible for the cost of any goods or services purchased by Visa Signature Concierge on cardmembers’ behalf.
⁵ U.S. Bank provides zero fraud liability for unauthorized transactions. Cardmember must notify U.S. Bank promptly of any unauthorized use. Certain conditions and limitations may apply.
⁶ Some limitations may apply. Details are provided to cardmembers.
The creditor and issuer of theAmerican Seniors Association Card is U.S. Bank National Association ND, pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A. Inc.
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