The clip is brutal enough in isolation, but the fact that it’s the normally sympathetic New York magazine that’s dropping it on O makes me think he’s even more vulnerable on the Big Lie than we all thought. They didn’t go looking to hit him this hard, I’m sure; they simply couldn’t resist an opportunity this easy. Which also explains why lefties are straining hard not to call what he said a “lie.” New York itself describes the clip delicately as Obama “knowingly mak[ing] an overly simplistic guarantee,” which I guess is a way to reassure their audience that you can’t truly be guilty of lying if it’s in service to a cause they all agree on.
It’s actually a good thing in many cases that people can’t keep their plans, New York continues, because many of them currently on the market are junk that won’t protect you in the event of a true catastrophe. Here’s health-care consultant Bob Laszewski, who’s emerged as one of the media’s go-to guys on the tribulations of Healthcare.gov, explaining how his own decidedly non-junky coverage has now been taken away:
Now, my plan covers about everything. Never had a procedure for either my wife or myself turned down. Wellness benefits are without a deductible. It covers mental health, drugs, maternity, anything I can think of.
The new plan would have a deductible $500 higher than the one I now have and a lot more if I go “out-of-network” inside the rest of the Blue Cross national network.
And, wait all you people telling me rate shock does not exist, it far more restricted plan costs 66% more than our current monthly premium. Mr. Rate Shock got rate shocked––and benefit shocked to boot.
Now here’s the real corker: Maryland has been bragging they have the lowest premiums of all of the exchanges. More, I figured being an old fart the age rating rules, that force younger people to pay more so older people pay less, would help me. Didn’t work out.
So Laszewski ended up with a far more expensive plan which, comparatively speaking, turns out to be — ta da — junk. Again, though: Wasn’t that the point of the law, to get the people who can afford to pay a little more (and I use “afford” loosely) to pay it in the name of sharing the burden of covering the poor and sick? It sounds to me like Laszewski’s new plan is a model for the whole program: The insurance company gets more revenue for less benefits, which means they’ve got more in the till to cover everyone else’s preexisting conditions. See? ObamaCare does work!
Someone needs to tell Joe Manchin:
When asked if Obama’s repeated promises were misleading, Manchin seemed to be grappling with the extent of the deception.
“It was pretty much a part of the whole talking points, forever. It was almost like, ‘don’t worry! Don’t worry! Don’t worry!’ Well, people back in West Virginia are worried now, thinking, ‘ok, you mean I can’t keep it? I gotta buy this?’ Or, ‘the policy I had didn’t meet certain criteria or certain standards, and now those certain standard are going to force me to buy?’” Manchin said, adding he’s working with Republican Senator Johnny Isakson on a one-year delay to the individual mandate.
In the same piece, Jonathan Strong quotes Harry Reid as saying it’s true that you can keep your plan under ObamaCare because it’s not the feds who are canceling coverage, it’s the insurers themselves. (“Insurance companies cancel plans. That’s what they do.”) If you’re mad that the rug’s been pulled out from under you, take it up with Blue Cross or whoever. I’ve gotta say: Never did I think they’d be so cornered politically that Valerie Jarrett’s Orwellian defense of ObamaCare’s rules would catch on among Democrats more widely. But, per Reid, apparently it has. They really are seriously going to argue that the cancellations, many of which are compelled by ObamaCare’s new rules on “essential benefits” and disqualified grandfathered plans, are something that insurers are doing somewhat voluntarily, not because America’s new legal framework is driving them to do so. At today’s House hearing, Sandy Levin actually described the cancellation notices people are receiving as mere “transitions” onto the new health-insurance exchange. We’re about three weeks away from Democrats saying, “ObamaCare? What’s ‘ObamaCare’?”
For your homework, via Ace, go read this Patrick Brennan post at the Corner that explains how Obama’s own HHS deputies made the law even more aggressive than it was designed to be in terms of forcing plan cancellations. The math of covering preexisting conditions is such that insurers had little choice but to take certain actions, like raising people’s deductibles, that would disqualify them from “grandfather” status — and O’s team, by writing the regulations for disqualification broadly, compounded the problem. It didn’t have to be this bad. They wanted it that way.