SCREWED – OBAMACARE’S SPAWN
A POLITICAL & POLICY ANALYSIS
BY JAY B GASKILL
… also posted on the Policy Think Site –
That the Un-Affordable Health Care Act is a fiscal and policy disaster should not have come as a surprise.
When your daughter or niece has unprotected sex with a stranger, pregnancy is a risk. With the help of the complicit partisan hacks in the 111th Congress, political coitus without protection was accomplished well in advance of the 2012 populist pushback. The resulting pregnancy was mostly concealed until now. But we the people are late in our third trimester, experiencing belated remorse. An abortion will be ugly, almost as ugly as the monster emerging from the birth canal.
There will be a renewed populist pushback, wider, deeper and even more threatening to the Obama Care train. But it will be late arriving.
TRUTH NOW TOLD: Obama’s DNA is all over this botched attempt at comprehensive health care reform. Yesterday’s half-acknowledgment of responsibility and carefully crafted “apology” was the most un-Truman act of executive evasion and doubletalk in recent memory.[i]
There were thoughtful voices of caution seeking attention in the months and weeks before this measure’s one-sided partisan passage was secured[ii]. Those voices were mostly ignored.
TRUTH NOW TOLD: The Obama Care act was social engineering disguised as health care reform, sold as a remedial measure to bring health care insurance to millions of the uninsured.
But a simple attempt to provide health insurance to the poor and otherwise barred subgroups could easily have been done in the way the most successful welfare and safety net measures have been done: Direct assistance through subsidies and/or targeted programs to those in need. This, of course, would have left the healthcare system intact, not to mention the 80% of US families and individuals who were happy with their current health care payment arrangements.
Obama Care contained a poison pill that was designed to make private health insurance so unprofitable that the industry would collapse, leaving the government, that vaunted “single payer” as the only player still standing. The ultimate outcome was and is intended by the act’s drafters: To force all Americans into a bureaucratic structure in which health demands are curbed by limited resources and forms of thinly disguised rationing, the model I and others have rightly described as “the HMO from hell.” That poison pill was most likely the handiwork of Anthony Weiner (sorry, the porn metaphor is unavoidable here).
“Before resigning from Congress over a sexting scandal in 2011, [Anthony] Weiner raised his national profile by going on cable television, as the White House was battling a unified Republican Party over its universal health care plan, and criticizing the president for not creating a single-payer plan. (Many liberal universal health care advocates liked the idea of single-payer, but it was generally recognized that such a plan had zero chance of becoming law.)
Weiner [said] “I think the efforts of those of us who were trying to get a single-payer system, moved the debate, moved the conversation very far over and made the bill a lot better. And I have heard very few people in Congress say to me that I was anything but helpful in getting that passed.”
Making the bill “a lot better”, as Weiner put it, was accomplished by the insertion of so many bureaucratic controls and demands on the private health care providers that a single payer plan would be inevitable. Clearly Mr. Weiner shares paternity for the unwanted pregnancy.
The American health care system suffers from too much bureaucracy, far too much top-down, but ineffectual attempts at management, and far too little consumer choice and control. Real costs are actively concealed by hospitals. Physicians are caught in the middle, forced to cut patient face time, and to substitute approved “codes” for actual, thoughtful diagnoses. Insurance is a concept meant for occasional catastrophe, based on the idea that such risks can be spread over a large number of buyers, most of whom will never have a house fire or a deadly crash. Health insurance makes sense only for the highly unusual risk events, not for routine, mostly expected medical events. What everyone calls “health insurance” is really prepaid medical costs. Yes the system is ripe for reform, but the social engineers who occupy the executive branch have forgotten the first rule or responsible medicine: “First: do no harm.”
A leading democrat involved with the Obama Care project, former Senator Max Baucus, publically called this a train wreck. That was a bit late[iii], and Mr. Baucus has retired to Montana. What do you do in an impending train wreck? Stop the train. Then – Don’t use that damaged track ever again. Obama Care was ramrodded through congress by shutting down debate, shutting off amendments, ignoring dissent, refusing to have bipartisan hearings on its various hidden and mostly unread components. This abortion is the bitter legacy of one party rule.
Can this be fixed? Stay tuned.
FIRST PUBLISHED ON THE POLICY THINK SITE www.jaygaskill.com
Copyright © 2013 by Jay B Gaskill, Attorney at Law
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[i] “I am sorry that they, you know, are finding themselves in this situation, based on assurances they got from me.” http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/president-obama-apologizes-to-americans-who-are-losing-their-health-insurance/2013/11/0
[iii] “I just see a huge train wreck coming down,” Mr. Baucus said — http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/apr/17/sen-max-baucus-health-law-heading-for-train-wreck/