EVEN OBAMA ADMITS AFFORDABLE CARE ACT IS A MESS
As of Thursday morning, even President Obama agrees that Obamacare is a colossal mess with dreadful impacts on millions of Americans. It will take months to realize the full extent of the mess. Obamacare supporters keep trying to minimize the underlying incompetence by citing the "law of unintended consequences, which is actually a euphemism for the bad results of bad decisions.
In a 1963 address, Dr. Martin Luther King had a better description for the so-called law of unintended consequences. He said "nothing on earth is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." Then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi said that we'd have to pass the bill to know what's in it, and every single Washington Democrat nodded approvingly.
An awful lot of Americans will soon be uninsured, nearly everyone faces higher premiums and deductibles, and states are facing unsustainable Medicaid costs. We could call it an unintended consequence, but it's still the predictable result of sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.
I wish Dr. King were still around.
As in most programs with redistribution of wealth at its core, Obamacare has its winners and losers. The poor, before Obamacare, were covered under Medicaid. Obamacare was intended to expand coverage to the next tier of 30 million of uninsured Americans above the poverty line by providing generous subsidies to help them purchase much-needed health insurance, as well as offer coverage to the heretofore uninsurable Americans with preexisting conditions. Obamacare does all of that and these Americans are, indeed, the winners.
However, as is the case with most legislation emanating from Washington D. C., there are losers.
In the case of Obamacare, the losers would be the millions and millions of Americans losing their private insurance due to strict regulations written after the law was enacted. Unfortunately, millions of these people (small business owners, workers not offered insurance by their employers, lawyers, doctors) make too much money to qualify for subsidies, but too little to absorb the massive premium increases they are finding on the exchanges — increases ranging from $200 to $700 per month. In a tough economy they were already struggling.
In order to keep their insurance, each of these families will have to cope in different ways. To one family, it may mean simply dropping their membership to the country club. To another it may mean letting a bass boat or second car go back to the credit union, thereby ruining their credit. To yet another, it may mean no longer contributing to their children's college fund. To some, it will mean just staying home ... no more movies or eating out. But, they will have to deal with it.
My fear is, however, that to the vast majority, it will simply mean going without insurance, which ironically, is exactly what this law was written to prevent. In any of these scenarios, there will be consequences to our local economy and to the U.S. economy as a whole. You can't take $200 to $700 per family out of our national economy and not expect disastrous results to our GDP.
But the most disastrous result? Our emergency rooms will still be full.
When I went to school, we were taught history and spent a great deal of time studying the U.S. Constitution, which establishes three branches of government: The Legislative, the Judicial and the Executive.
We must have done away with the Legislative and Judicial branches, it seems, because the Executive branch is running the country without any checks or balances. Congress does nothing, yet still gets paid.
How can President Obama decide who must participate in Obamacare and who gets a pass? How can he now decide that the canceled insurance policies can be renewed for another year?
That was not part of the law that was passed.
Is he now a king?