Supposedly 30 million people who didn’t have insurance will get insurance under Obamacare. On the face of it, justifying the program on this basis alone seems more or less like defending Jeffrey Dahmer on the grounds that he needed to meet his nutritional needs. When millions are losing their insurance as a result of government interference, why does that fact that other people gain insurance justify the interference? Remember, no one had robbed anyone of health insurance before, but that is no longer the case.
Furthermore, the newly insured may just get the right to pay an insurance premium without actually getting the access to healthcare they need!
But, aside from all that, it turns out that number is a fiction. Paul Gregory breaks it down at the Forbes site:
The CBO’s calculation of virtual insurance is like measuring weight loss by subtracting your actual weight at the end of a diet from what it would have been without the diet. For example, a 200 pound man weighs 195 pounds after a month of dieting. He concludes he lost 25 pounds because he figures he would have weighed 225 pounds without the diet.
Note the CBO “saves” us from being uninsured by assuming that 20 million Americans will be rushing to the exchanges in 2016 despite high premiums and even higher deductibles and that only 2.5 percent of employers stop offering employee coverage and only 7 percent lose their insurance in individual markets.
None of these figures are about real people who have actually gotten insurance. The numbers are all based on future projections. Those projections were never reliable, and none of them have been adjusted for the current debacle of the rollout.
Although the exchange sign-up numbers have yet to be disclosed, our initial first-hand experience with the exchanges seems to be that they reduce the number of insured. The number of individual policies cancelled may turn out to be greater than the number turning to exchanges and Medicaid. The employer mandate has been delayed a year. How companies will respond is only a matter of speculation, but if only a quarter decides not to offer insurance, ObamaCare will actually raise the number uninsured, according to the CBO formula.
The lesson: Never accept any projection of what will happen in the future without first reading the fine print. I can apply equally plausible assumptions to the CBO calculations to conclude that ObamaCare will raise the number uninsured.
The bottom line is that this “30 million” number is not a fact but a promise. Despite the claims that the CBO is “non-partisan” this is still a promise from the same regime that told us we could keep our plan if we liked it.
The media will push anecdotal stories of “winners” under Obamacare, but those anecdotes don’t represent millions of people with good news.