It is almost ironic that the Chicago Tribune, Obama’s hometown newspaper and one of his biggest cheerleaders, has a scathing editorial out about Obama’s “signature” legislation – ObamaCare. And probably the most surprising thing about the editorial is it’s conclusion. The paper that endorsed and pushed for and Obama win, understanding full well that he was a big government type politician, says:
Accept that government doesn’t know what’s best for everyone. That people can decide what coverage they need and can afford. A strong marketplace offers choices for every wallet. Obamacare’s rules curtail those choices. Why, for instance, should only people under age 30 be eligible to purchase lower-cost “catastrophic” insurance? Pinching Americans’ coverage choices is one big reason this law doesn’t work.
Why, that almost sounds like … the conservative position. Even “tea-partyish”.
To add to your confusion, how about this:
It was a mistake to attempt such a massive government intrusion on a marketplace and a mistake to do so without anything close to a public consensus.
Where were they when Democrats were telling us that’s precisely what they were going to do?
Regardless, when you’ve lost your hometown newspaper, well, it might signal you’ve got a bigger problem on your hands than just getting this abysmal program limping along.
And the Trib even goes so far as to hand the GOP it’s talking points on the subject:
Democratic leaders forced the law through Congress without a single Republican vote. The architects of Obamacare brushed aside sharp warnings from tech wizards that the computer system wasn’t tested and ready. They piled hundreds of pages of last-minute regulations on insurers. They forced insurers to cancel policies by the thousands because those policies fell short of the soup-to-nuts coverage required by the law.
The American public is having a credibility-shattering debate about the president: Did he not bother to learn the details of the law before he told us we could keep our doctors and our insurance, or did he know the truth and flat-out lie?
Political consequences from the early failure of Obamacare are likely. But far more important are the personal consequences for American consumers.
Personal as in this isn’t some esoteric political question that, in effect, merely asks your opinion on how the country should be governed, but instead, has real-world consequences for real people. And, thus far, those consequences have been anything but satisfactory.
Couple all of that with fact that the majority of Americans were and still are against the law. Then there are the lies told to reassure the doubtful that all would be wonderful – rainbows, unicorns and fairy dust – when this finally passed. Even though we were going to have to pass it to find out what was in it.
Well, we’ve found out what was in it and if Americans were angry before, they’re seething now. And it doesn’t look like it is going to get any better:
There are early indications that many young and healthy people are opting not to buy insurance. There are two likely reasons: It’s nearly impossible for anyone to sign up, and the cost is prohibitive for people who have modest incomes but don’t qualify for subsidies.
If this continues, you’ll hear the phrase “death spiral” more and more. That’s the term insurance execs use to describe what will happen if young and relatively healthy people don’t pay into the system while older people with greater health care needs sign up. If that happens, increased costs will vastly outstrip increased revenues, putting enormous financial pressure on the whole scheme.
Frankly, I love the final word in those two paragraphs — “scheme”. It describes ObamaCare to a tee. Because that’s what this was all about – a vote buying scheme. Democrats were sure that if they passed this law Americans would be so eternally grateful they would keep them in a majority forever (remember Bill Clinton’s “just do it and they’ll love you afterward” comments). So sure that they ignored every warning sign and every bit of advice telling them it wouldn’t work.
The result, as they say, was predictable.
And you know it is awful when you see words like the above from … The Chicago Trib?