Tuesday, September 21, 2021
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Happy 1st B-day, Obamacare

May it be your last.

First, let me just say this: I agree with Ace. If the Republicans can’t win on an issue with 59% support of the American populace, we need a new batch of non-feckless, non-foolish Rs.

Second, the 41% who don’t oppose this bill are just not paying attention or are so steeped in the liberal Kool-Aid that they are deluded.

If we don’t get this bill repealed, the innovation that others condemn as “driving up health care costs” will die. Yes, we would save money on health care if that happens. A century ago, hardly any money was spent on health care at all. A handful of leeches and some ginger, goldenseal, castor oil and whiskey and you were pretty much good to go.

Yes, life expectancy was lower and babies born with congenital heart defects died, but at least we didn’t spend money on them, right?

But at that time, government was not running health care, so remarkable advances occurred. Now we have stories like this one, from Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI):

Today is the first anniversary of the greatest single assault on our freedom in my lifetime: the signing of ObamaCare. As we consider what this law may do to our country, I can’t help but reflect on a medical miracle made possible by the American health-care system. It’s one that holds special meaning for me.

Some years ago, a little girl was born with a serious heart defect: Her aorta and pulmonary artery were reversed. Without immediate intervention, she would not have survived.

The infant was rushed to another hospital where a surgeon performed a procedure at 1 a.m. that saved her life. Eight months later, when her heart was the size of a small plum, an incredibly dedicated and skilled team of medical professionals surgically reconstructed it. Twenty-seven years later, the young woman is now a nurse in a neonatal intensive care unit where she is studying to become a nurse practitioner.

She wasn’t saved by a bureaucrat, and no government mandate forced her parents to purchase the coverage that saved her. Instead, her care was provided under a run-of-the-mill plan available to every employee of an Oshkosh, Wis., plastics plant.

If you haven’t guessed, this story touches my heart because the girl is my daughter, Carey. And my wife and I are incredibly thankful that we had the freedom to seek out the most advanced surgical technique. The procedure that saved her, and has given her a chance at a full life, was available because America has a free-market system that has advanced medicine at a phenomenal pace.

More at the link.

My grandma lost her second son to strep throat. Just a few short years later, penicillin would have prevented that loss, but all she had available was gargled salt water. But even after the advent of penicillin, a child born with a serious heart defect would not have survived. That took many more years of effort, trial and error.

Now we have cases of intrauterine surgery correcting birth defects, major advances in neonatal care and advances in cancer, heart attack, and stroke treatments and prevention as well as many, many others.

Compare that against industries and activities with gov’t control and restrictions, like railroads and education. There is nothing to stop innovation like Uncle Sugar and his velvet chains.

At the time Sarah Palin referred to death panels, the liberal media nearly prolapsed in their rush to condemn her for such vitriolic language. But the fact that she was able to concisely say what gov’t restrictions will entail was the fuse for their cannon. She was correct. Gov’t can’t control health care costs unless it controls health care access.

They think they can, but they are wrong:

Blue Shield of California has delayed more rate hikes at the request of the insurance commissioner.

Cumulatively some policy holders would pay about 60 percent more in premiums under the new rate hikes, which were scheduled to take effect March 1st.

They’ve been delayed for 60 days to give the commissioner enough time to review the proposal.

CALPIRG, an advocate for the public interest, says this is good news for consumers who need to know that the increases are justified.

That’s a bureaucrat’s idea of success. A 60 day delay in the day of reckoning.

Dave Jones is California’s Insurance Commissioner. Here’s what he highlights as his major accomplishments:

Highlights of Jones’ legislative accomplishments include:

* Reforming California’s conservatorship laws, enacting sweeping protections for seniors and dependent adults facing abuse (Assembly Bill 1363 of 2006)
* Preventing HMOs and health insurers from charging men and women different rates for the same health insurance policies (Assembly Bill 119 of 2009)
* First-in-the-nation legislation allowing Californians to share their personal vehicles in car-sharing pools without invalidating their auto insurance (Assembly Bill 1871 of 2010)
* Securing billions in federal funding to improve California’s hospital health care safety net and fund children’s health care, by establishing a hospital provider fee (Assembly Bill 1383 of 2009)
* Protecting private medical records from mis-use (Assembly Bill 1298 of 2007) and disclosure (Assembly Bill 211 of 2008)
* Creating the nation’s largest early childhood education and preschool program to give children the best possible start (Assembly Bill 2759 of 2008)

If you read that carefully, you’ll see that his primary accomplishments have been restricting private provision of health insurance and increasing public control of the same.

And now what is he reduced to?

Anthem Blue Cross will lower its rate hikes planned for July and will hold off on increases to co-payments and deductibles until 2012, according to an agreement announced Monday by the state Department of Insurance.

“This is good news for 600,000 policyholders,” State Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones said Monday, adding that the decision means consumers “can continue to afford coverage instead of having to give it up.”

Jones estimated Anthem Blue Cross ratepayers will save at least $40 million as a result of the Monday decision.

Members of Anthem Blue Cross, the state’s largest health insurer, will see the average premium go up by 9.1 percent starting July 1.

Anthem had originally sought a 9.8 percent increase in its request filed with the state late last year, citing the rising cost of providing coverage to those who pay for their own insurance.

Anthem will also delay rate increases for some co-payments and deductibles until Jan. 1, 2012, instead of putting them into effect in July.

More at the Fresno Bee.
That’s right. They are down to delaying rate increases and restricting the increase to 9.1% instead of 9.8%. What would actually reduce rates and costs? Among other things, elimination of the state restrictions on the ability of insurance companies to refuse payments for certain claims. If you have no intention of obtaining acupuncture or holistic healing, you shouldn’t be forced to purchase a policy that covers it.

If you want to purchase insurance from a company in CO, TX or WI, you should be allowed to do so. Right now that’s only available to you if your employer has 50 or more employees. I suppose individuals and businesses that employ 49 people aren’t smart enough to shop across state lines. At least that’s the argument of the liberals that keep the restriction in place.

What progressives want, they can’t have.  They’d like to see everyone get advanced health care; innovations in care and delivery of the same; restrained costs for all of it.  But that isn’t ever going to happen.  The more difficult and advanced our health care gets, the more expensive it’s going to be.  How can we control that?  Let the people decide.

If I’m willing to purchase insurance for every possible scenario with no costs to me, fine.  If I’m willing to die rather than spend $250,000 on a transplant, fine.  People are willing and capable of making decisions on their own.  What messes with the system is gov’t meddling.  We’ve got to get them out of it.

In this, and every other instance, gov’t restrictions increase costs and decrease availability and innovation. That fact is not dependent on whether or not progressives believe it any more than gravity was not effective until Newton got boinked on the head with an apple.

Not only is Obamacare an unconstitutional, vast over-reach on the part of the US Congress and President, it’s unpopular and nonsensical. It’s time to celebrate its birthday with a match and a candle. Right at the corner of the multi-thousand page bill with a bit of gasoline for a chaser.

*UPDATE* Heritage has a great bullet pointed list of the real world effects of Obamacare, regardless of what the politicians promised.

It includes:
1. Higher Premiums
2. Dropped child-only plans
3. Lost plans
4. Waivers
5. Bailouts

Read the whole thing.

Queen Hotchibobo
I was born in Saginaw, Michigan, and I grew up in a house on Saginaw Bay. My daddy was a poor, hardworking Saginaw fisherman. Too many times he came home with too little pay. Naw, not really, but it sounds more interesting than the real bio, so there you are.

3 COMMENTS

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3 COMMENTS

  1. They don’t pay you nearly enough. 🙂 The background theme I see running through your piece is that Obama’s operatives are working overtime with all of their useful idiots within and without the industry to put the best possible spin on rate increases and other defects of the program hoping that, and the fact that some of the provisions won’t kick in for a few years, will keep the pitchforks away from the White House until after Nov. 2012.

    • Yes (both to my lack of sufficient remuneration and to the Obama operatives). It is to the perpetual shame of the Make-Believe-Media that they have ignored and glossed over all the real world disastrous effects of the administration.

      They weren’t credible before, but this administration has exposed their fecklessness as nothing else has done.

  1. They don’t pay you nearly enough. 🙂 The background theme I see running through your piece is that Obama’s operatives are working overtime with all of their useful idiots within and without the industry to put the best possible spin on rate increases and other defects of the program hoping that, and the fact that some of the provisions won’t kick in for a few years, will keep the pitchforks away from the White House until after Nov. 2012.

    • Yes (both to my lack of sufficient remuneration and to the Obama operatives). It is to the perpetual shame of the Make-Believe-Media that they have ignored and glossed over all the real world disastrous effects of the administration.

      They weren’t credible before, but this administration has exposed their fecklessness as nothing else has done.

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