Sunday, November 10, 2013

Obamacare Starts Out looking Very Ugly

What has been described as a nightmare and a train wreak continues to develop before our eyes. The latest furor broke out this week concerning the millions of Americans who currently have health coverage under individual or small group plans, many started getting notices from insurance companies that the new Obamacare regulations mean that their current plans are being dropped. The focus appears to be on easing the impact for a specific group: people whose policies have been canceled and who don't qualify for tax credits to offset higher premiums. Seeking damage control the administration has countered with spin, and babble. Adding to the roll-out woes a Federal US appeals court last week ruled that the Obamacare birth control mandate is unconstitutional.

A president can't just pick up the phone and order the Treasury to cut checks for people suffering from insurance premium sticker shock. Adjustments to subsidies would have to be authorized by law and no easy fix is in sight that would not be "budget busting" and halt Obamacare in its tracks. President Barack Obama says he'll do everything he can to help people coping with health insurance cancellations, but legally and practically his options appear limited. That means the latest political problem engulfing Obama's health care overhaul will not be resolved quickly, cleanly or completely. White House deputy spokesman Josh Earnest said Friday that the president has asked his team to look at administrative fixes to help people whose plans are being canceled as a result of new federal coverage rules. Many people see this as a fig leaf and more babble to soften calm the anger over what they see as a flat out lie from the mouth of the President.

As this unwinds several things are becoming crystal clear, last week hundreds of thousands of cancellation letters went out to people who had been assured over a dozen times by the president that "If you like your health care plan, you'll be able to keep your health care plan. Period." The cancellations lay bare the reality of Obamacare and are irrefutable evidence that President Obama's repeated you-keep-your-coverage claim was false. Washington Post fact-checker Glenn Kessler gave the president's claim four Pinocchios. Noses don't come any longer. Obama, in an NBC interview Thursday, said "I am sorry" to people who are losing coverage and had relied on his assurances that if they liked their plan, they could keep it. This doesn't help if you are one of the  many now forced to pay hundreds more each month for coverage.

The new White House spin is that the canceled plans were substandard and the new mandatory, often costlier, plans will be better once the exchange website works, that is. Secretary Sebelius apologized for the faulty website, but not for mass cancellations. A recent speech in Boston by the President drew comparisons between the Massachusetts law and the problem-plagued Affordable Care Act. During his speech, Obama acknowledged the problems with Obamacare and apologized for his clunky rollout. “There’s no denying it, right now the website is too slow, too many people have gotten stuck and I’m not happy about it,” Obama said. Talking about the troubled launch of Obamacare he cited the slow start of Massachusetts healthcare law that Mitt Romney as governor, signed in 2006.

Romney, who as the GOP's 2012 presidential nominee ran in part on repealing ObamaCare, emerged from his post-election private life to counter the White House message and distance himself from the Obamacare feasco. “In the years since the Massachusetts health care law went into effect nothing has changed my view that a plan crafted to fit the unique circumstances of a single state should not be grafted onto the entire country,” he tweeted. “Health reform is best crafted by states with bipartisan support and input from its employers, as we did, without raising taxes, and by carefully phasing it in to avoid the type of disruptions we are seeing nationally.”

The White House needs 7 million healthy young people to join the health care exchanges within the first year of the law to keep premiums low for everyone under the Affordable Care Act. Many people see this botched roll-out of the Affordable Care Act or ‘Obamacare’ as an opening for Republicans to win over Hispanic “millennials” that make up 20 percent of those age18-to-29. They are this generation’s largest minority and as a whole their families are the most uninsured in the United States. In fact, one-third of the nation’s 48 million uninsured are Latinos. After more than a month of inoperable exchange websites, hundreds of thousands of people getting booted off their current health insurance plans and a congressional grilling of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, many are starting to see this goal as unreachable.

Currently this law designed to cover the uninsured is throwing far more people off their insurance than it can possibly be signing up on the nonfunctioning insurance exchanges. Indeed, most of the 19 million people with individual insurance will have to find new and likely more expensive coverage. And that doesn't even include the additional millions who are sure to lose their employer-provided coverage. That's a lot of people. Perhaps Obama didn't know. maybe he was as surprised by this as he claims to have been by the IRS scandal, The Associated Press and James Rosen phone logs, the failure of the Obamacare website, the premeditation of the Benghazi attacks, and the tapping of the German Chancellor's phone.

"We canceled your plan because it was substandard" followed by "we have a better idea"  can be translated into: Sure, you liked your policy, but you don't know what you need. What you really need is what our experts have determined must be in every plan. So a couple in their 60s must buy maternity care, a teetotaler substance abuse treatment, and a healthy 28-year-old with perfectly appropriate catastrophic insurance must pay for coverage for which he has no use.  Fact is these required bells and whistles aren't there as voter-pleasing freebies. The planners knew all along that by forcing insurance buyers to overpay for stuff they don't need, that money can subsidize other people. The light of day is showing Obamacare is not about healthcare, it is a massive transfer of wealth through  hidden taxes, penalties, mandates and coverage requirements that yield a surplus of overpayments.

  Footnote; This post dovetails with many of my recent writings, for more I might suggest reading the articles below. Other related articles may be found in my blog archive, thanks for reading, your comments are encouraged,


  1. Obama is taking a triple hit, people are questioning his credibility, competence and confidence is dropping because of the lies and this colossal mess. Soon he will be walking back the statements he made about how he is going to fix things so we can keep our current policies.
    Below is a link to Adolf Hitler's reaction to losing his insurance.

  2. You ain't seen nothin' yet... wait till 2015 when the companies are coerced into complying with this foolishness.

    1. Another ugly development is taking place in Medicare. Changes being made and occurring just below the radar. This will have a huge impact on boomers. The cost of healthcare in later years may not be as "free" as they thought. This will be a big shock for the many aging Americans with little in the way of savings.