My local news paper, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, begins a health insurance story this way:
Thanks to government subsidies, many St. Louis-area residents will be able to afford health insurance for the first time, beginning in 2014.
And then the next sentence comes…
…But the insurance they’ll be able to buy will offer a limited range of options.
Which matches the headline: “New health policies will expose many to higher premiums, more risk.”
I looked at my local paper because the Manhattan Institute doesn’t have data for my state yet. According to the Post-Dispatch, our situation is going to get much worse on average for Missouri residents. The article clearly tells us that everyone is going to be paying more for less value. Furthermore, the only exceptions to this rule are those who get direct government subsidies. In other words, the higher cost for lower quality insurance comes out of taxpayers’ pockets either now (through current taxation), later (through debt and interest paid by future taxation), or in the form of economic apocalypse (because it makes us default sooner).
So the “many,” who will have something they couldn’t previously afford, are much fewer than the vast numbers of other Missourians who will be economically decimated. The Rolling Stone’s story about six cases where Obamacare is “making a difference.” But how do six stories of people getting things they couldn’t afford compensate for, say, sixty sixty-four-year-olds in various states who have to pay double the price for half the product?
Obamacare was sold as a way to help everyone. That was obviously never the plan.
Everyone would be much better off if we had found a way to determine who was truly unable to get healthcare and just gave those people piles of cash to be spent on medical treatment. It would be a deal compared to what we are doing now, where punishing people who liked the plan they had is far more of a priority than helping the uninsured who want coverage.
This is a common bait and switch.
Religious leftists attack the religious Right for opposing the welfare state as if they were kicking babies over a cliff when, in fact, the vast majority of the money in the welfare state goes to middle class entitlements. In fact, Social Security forces working class laborers to contribute to the retirements of white-collar, college-educated suits.
Likewise, in public education children with special needs or from poor families get a fraction of what goes to pay for the education of everyone else. If you believe the government should take care of the poor, then stop spending so much on everyone else. Then you should be able to both reduce the burden of taxation and have more left over to the really needy.
I’m not claiming here it is the state’s job to do charity, but if you disagree with me, then you should be opposed to Obamacare and the rest of our doomed entitlement system.
I’m not a fan of the popular version of Robin Hood who “stole from the rich and gave to the poor” (whereas the real Robin Hood gave tax refunds). But at least his math works. Stealing much from the many to give little to the few does not make society better off.