Friday, July 21, 2017

Paul Krugman Explains Obamacare

On July 10, the failing New York Times ran “Three Legs Good, No Legs Bad” by Paul Krugman who asserted that the reason “Republicans can’t come up with a non-disastrous alternative to Obamacare [is] because you can’t change any major element of the Affordable Care Act without destroying the whole thing.”
Krugman then informs us that ObamaCare is a “three-legged stool.” The first leg requires “that insurers offer the same plans, at the same prices, to everyone, regardless of medical history,” which “deals with the problem of pre-existing conditions.” The second leg is the individual mandate, which requires (some) Americans to buy health insurance. And the third leg of Krugman’s stool is subsidies for those who can’t afford to comply with the mandate; i.e. expanded Medicaid and tax credits to buy private health insurance. “The key point is that all three legs of this stool are necessary. Take away any one of them, and the program can’t work.”
But if ObamaCare really is a three-legged stool, then that’s a major design flaw. Why wasn’t ObamaCare designed to be a four-legged chair? Many animals are quadrupeds, and can still get around if they lose one leg. Redundancies and backups are built into everything nowadays. Jetliners are designed to be able to fly on one engine. So was the stool deliberate, or are the architects of ObamaCare just doofuses who shouldn’t be allowed anywhere near public policy?

Democrats blame Trump for Obamacare's failure

Obama and the Democrats passed Obamacare on a straight party vote without any Republican input or votes using a parliamentary trick by Harry Reid.  Among other lies, Obama promised that premiums would be reduced and everyone would keep his doctor.  The basis of Obamacare was to force young healthy Americans to purchase expensive health insurance for coverage they did not need and to have taxpayers pay insurance companies to subsidize premiums for low-income Americans. 
The health insurance issues could have been, and still can be, resolved by specific laws dealing with specific issues.  For example, allow insurance to be sold across state lines, allow consumers to choose coverage, increase the amounts in health savings accounts (HSAs), allow for payment of premiums using HSAs, allow deductibility of all health costs and premiums from gross income, enact tort reform to limit punitive damage awards and non-economic losses, use VA hospitals to treat uninsured and those with pre-existing conditions, and others.
Instead of honestly dealing with the specific problems, Obama revamped the entire health insurance system and brought it under federal control to supposedly provide health insurance to about 12 million uninsured, when the vast majority of Americans, probably over 300 million, had health insurance.  The real purpose was to extend federal control over a large portion of the economy and create more voters dependent on the Democratic Party.

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