23 Mar 2015 ObamaCare At Five: Lipstick on a Pig
But the Times can’t acknowledge that the law is unpopular without prefacing it with a distortion: “The general public isn’t as eager to do away with the law, widely known as Obamacare…” Really? The last poll conducted on the question of repeal showed 58 percent favor repeal. The poll, commission by FoxNews last December, found that was up 53 percent from a year earlier.
You might think that the persistent unpopularity of ObamaCare would encourage some reconsideration the value of the law. But then you realize this is the Times editorial page. Naturally, they quickly get on with the lipstick application:
Despite the relentless attacks, however, the act has been a notable success on one front: It has helped millions of Americans obtain insurance coverage that would otherwise be out of their reach. By March, more than 21 million people had enrolled through new state insurance exchanges or Medicaid, including more than 16 million who’d previously been uninsured, and the number of Americans without coverage has dropped to a little over 12%, according to Gallup.
Yes, but that 21 million include about 10 to 11 million more on Medicaid, the worst health care program in the U.S., not exactly something to cheer about. It also includes some of the 4 to 6 million people who lost their insurance thanks to ObamaCare, rendering President Obama’s promise that if you like your health plan, you can keep you health plan” quite possibly the lie of the decade. Funny, but the editorial doesn’t mention that.
At the end of that paragraph, they pull a fast one: “There’s much more to be done to make healthcare affordable and sustainable, but lawmakers should build on the foundation laid by Obamacare instead of continuing to battle over whether to demolish it.” Health insurance and health care are two different things. Making health insurance more “affordable” by heavily subsidizing it does not necessarily make health care more affordable. (Indeed, it might make health care more expensive).
The editorial next claims that “One result [of ObamaCare], according to PricewaterhouseCoopers’ Health Research Institute, has been a surge of new businesses into healthcare as entrepreneurs offer their own approaches to less costly, ‘consumer-oriented’ care.” According to the Congressional Budget Office, ObamaCare will also reduce the number of hours worked by the equivalent of 2.5 million job by 2017. Sure hope that surge of new businesses is enough to compensate for that.
Finally, it’s hard to know what to make of this passage: “A key part of the effort to rein in healthcare costs is covering more people with insurance plans that promote wellness and prevention. [ObamaCare] has done much of that work, so the rational thing for lawmakers to do now would be to build on that progress.” Either the editorialists are lying or they are ignorant. Let’s give them the benefit of the doubt and assume the latter. Sorry, but wellness programs do not save money and, of the most part, don’t improve health. And while preventive care can improve health, it generally does not save money. Maybe the Times’ editorialists should start getting their information on such subjects from sources other than the propaganda of former HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.
Of course, propaganda is very useful when trying to make ObamaCare out to be a good law.