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The ♡bamaCare!!! Compendium of Doom

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by
Stephen Green

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June 30, 2014 - 12:05 am
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Every day, sometimes twice, VodkaPundit readers enjoy their ♡bamaCare!!! Fail of the Day. If, that is, your definition of “enjoy” extends far enough to cover “bemusement,” “alarm,” and “existential dread.” But not today.

No, not today — because as the “settled” law seeps further into our institutions and our economy, like The Blob terrorizing that movie theater, the failures are stacking up too quickly now for me to dole them out to you one at a time. Of course, the difference between ♡bamaCare!!! and The Blob is that the theatergoers could run for their lives towards the exits, while those of us in the real world have been mandated into our seats. So today I instead offer you…

The ♡bamaCare!!! Compendium of Doom!

Your big banner headline story is the most recent — but not last — legal challenge the law faces at the Supreme Court. At stake this time is the birth control mandate, which is widely expected to be upheld, but narrowed. The National Journal’s Sam Baker explains the outcome the left fears most:

The most sweeping option is a broad First Amendment proclamation that all corporations have a fundamental right to exercise religion, in this case by refusing to cover birth control in their employees’ health care plans. This outcome would be almost a sequel to the Citizens United case on campaign finance laws and free speech. It would probably open the door for any company to challenge a slew of state or federal regulations, and would allow any corporation to avoid the contraception mandate—potentially affecting millions of women.

“Forcing” women to pay a few bucks a month at Walmart or Target for their own birth control seems to me at least to be a small price to pay for protecting our First Amendment religious liberties, but these days freedom’s just another word for nothin’ left to mandate.

Last week’s most under-reported — and certainly unintended — consequence of ♡bamaCare!!! comes from Joann Weiner at the Washington Post:

The government’s report shows that federal tax credits make health insurance premiums more affordable for everyone. The academics’ report, however, shows that women age 55 to 64 will face a huge spike in cost when they go out to buy individual insurance on the federal exchange. These women bear the brunt of the increased premiums and out of pocket expenses after the Affordable Care Act.

But those increased expenses for consumers should help make the state exchanges more solvent, yes? No:

A large number of young adults have obtained health insurance through New York State’s Obamacare website — but maybe not enough of them to keep the system afloat financially.

About one in three New Yorkers, 34%, who obtained coverage through the state online marketplace were in the key under-35 age bracket, the state Health Department said Thursday.

The exchanges require a minimum of 40% of under-35s to stay afloat, so it looks like New York — which earlier reports showed was going to be one the few states where rates would actually decline under ♡bamaCare!!! — has fallen 15% short of the requirement. Gerald Ford once famously refused to bail out New York City, but now it looks increasingly likely that the entire state’s exchange will go on the nation’s tab.

Comments are closed.

Top Rated Comments   
That increase in coverage comes largely from Medicaid expansion, which is not "insurance." It's welfare, plain and simple.

Cost increases are expected to balloon in the 2016-17 timeframe as the risk corridors phase out and insurers have to charge for what their customers are getting. The cost "savings" to date have been largely illusory, consisting of taking five dollars from one pocket, putting it in the other, and chalking it up as savings.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
These cherry-picked anecdotes are cute, and there will be more chances to pick out individual pieces of bad news in the future, but the broad strokes have to be hard to miss, even here?

1) After year one of the exchanges there are 10-15 million more people with health insurance (NET!).

2) Since the passage of the ACA health care costs have grown at the slowest rate in 50 years.

Two very important pieces of reality to know when considering where you stand on the law so far...
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
♡bamaCare!!!’s new & improved exchanges are more than 50% sicker and significantly older than the old & naughty individual markets they replaced. Maybe that’s why “sicker than average patients” will drive up rates in Michigan by up to 20%. Oh, who am I kidding — there’s no “maybe” about it.

At the very end of the 70s, my university's Student's Council was approached by an insurance company and persuaded to take a stupendous deal: students got an extensive insurance plan starting the next year for just $6 per year. The only catch was that enrollment had to be compulsory: every student had to participate. That caused some discomfort from those who thought the student activity fee was already too high and that extras like insurance should be something that people should be free to decline but even the naysayers were half-hearted with their objections since $6 was such a good deal. Near the end of our first year with this insurance plan, word came from the insurance company that rates would have to go up the next year. Apparently, our health plan was getting used a lot more than they or even we had anticipated. One of the leaders of the student council talked to the director of the clinic on campus where many of the students went for routine medical care and learned that the doctor's themselves were responsible for a lot of the extra costs. He said it was not unusual for students to go to the clinic complaining of itchy skin or rashes and for the doctors to recommend regular washing. The student would then complain that he was having trouble making ends meet. The doctor would then write him a prescription for ordinary hand soap, which the student would then claim on our compulsory health plan. For the second year of the plan, the premium quadrupled.

If the Obamacare administrators in Michigan managed to keep things down to only a 20% rate increase with patients that were actually significantly sicker than the norm, I can only say they did an amazing job. Our university saw a 400% increase with students that were NOT sicker than normal for our age group.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (39)
All Comments   (39)
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"“Forcing” women to pay a few bucks a month at Walmart or Target for their own birth control seems to me at least to be a small price to pay for protecting our First Amendment religious liberties, but these days freedom’s just another word for nothin’ left to mandate."

Actually, forcing anyone to pay for anyone's health care is immoral; religious liberties have got nothing to do with it. It has everything to do with individual rights to their lives and their property.

And, Chemist, would you care to cite a sources for the incredulous notion that there are 10 million more people with "health care" this year than last? Don't forget NOT to count the people whom you threw out of their perfectly good -- yet surprisingly "substandard" -- health care plans and who then had to buy government approved health care plans. No fair counting twice!

And, ooooh, health costs are at the slowest RATE in 50 years. So is that growing at only 3 times the rate of inflation or 4? You ain't seen nothing yet. As ol' P.J. O'Rourke said, if you think health care was expensive in the past, wait'll it's free!
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
I guess you missed the the citations below?

The 10-15 million increase in the insured is a net number based on population surveys. No double counting, all effects included (canceled policies too).

http://www.gallup.com/poll/171863/exchanges-close-americans-newly-insured.aspx

http://acasignups.net/14/05/05/gallup-poll-us-uninsured-rate-drops-134

And the rate of growth in health care costs since the ACA was passed is at inflation rate. Not 4x, not 3x, not 2x... at inflation. Shocking really. This is of huge importance for our long-term ficscal and economic prospects and so many are completely unaware...

http://www.vox.com/2014/5/27/5755416/for-the-first-time-in-50-years-health-prices-are-barely-growing

http://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/graph/?g=C8Q
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Looks like the insurance companies are not dazzled into a spell when someone remarks, "Obama sez, Pay my Hospital Bill!"
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
These cherry-picked anecdotes are cute, and there will be more chances to pick out individual pieces of bad news in the future, but the broad strokes have to be hard to miss, even here?

1) After year one of the exchanges there are 10-15 million more people with health insurance (NET!).

2) Since the passage of the ACA health care costs have grown at the slowest rate in 50 years.

Two very important pieces of reality to know when considering where you stand on the law so far...
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Both of these statements are lies. There are perhaps 4 million more insured now that were previously uncovered, and the average person's premiums have gone up significantly. Total national spending is down because we are in a depression partly caused by this law and liars like you.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
No, you are either completely mistaken, a useful idiot, or a liar.

Neither of your assertions is true. You may be able to go on HuffPo with your misleading proclamations, but no one here buys it.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Y'all do not respond well to unexpected new information. Wow.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
NyChemist, perhaps because SOME of us are LIVING this NIGHTMARE & IF there is a SHRED of truth coming from your slanted stats it's ONLY a few who've been interviewed. I am a VICTIM of O'Care & so I am speaking from FIRSTHAND EXPERIENCE & only 1 reporter has interviewed me.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
NYChemist, SO GLAD you found a "positive stat"!! ALL the "stats" I AM LIVING under O'Care are NOT so Rosy!! I had to refuse an MRI ordered by my Ortho, because my "bright shiny new O'Care HMO" (that was FORCED on me when my good PPO "that I LIKED" was CANCELLED), had a staggering Co-Pay of $300.00, that I figured I could live without. The last MRI I got had a Co-Pay of $60.00. I just got a CT-Scan (that I couldn't live without) &...you guessed it...the Co-Pay was $300.00!! The last CT-Scan I got had a Co-Pay of $60.00!! All but 1 person I know is SPENDING MORE MONEY on O'Care than they did on their previous GOOD INSURANCE that was CANCELLED!! If $60.00 is now more than $300.00 then, you are right, O'Care is "affordable", but so far the Lib's haven't been able to convince me of that...guess I need to "enroll" at the "re-education camp" to learn "Lib Math"!!
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Remember, gypciz: You do not matter. Only America's Most Vulnerable matter. Everyone else can pound sand. That is the central pillar of Progressive thought.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Monster from the Id, I think I am qualified as one of "America's Most Vulnerable" by now. I beat stage 3c ovarian cancer in 2012, Hubby stayed home to be my full time care-giver & drained most of our retirement account to do it, then got $crewed on taxes, 'cause you CANNOT "borrow" against your IRA (even temporarily) to cover catastrophic illness...NOR can you "write off" your lost wages for spending your time as a full time care-giver for a loved ONE...BUT you CAN write off paying a professional care-giver...WTF???? We had an excellent P.O.S. Plan, so a LOT (but not everything) was covered. The Cisplatin chemo drug gave me neuropathy in my hands & feet. Pain pills don't work on me (not opiates & not NSAIDS) & the MORONS in the state house here in NV passed a medical marijuana law where you first had to break the law BEFORE you could comply with it. I laid in bed crying & screaming in agonizing pain for months on end, BECAUSE I was afraid to break the law, lest I get my LEGAL green card carrying Hubby deported back to Canada & get myself barred from ever entering Canada due to a felony drug conviction...so I SUFFERED!! Hubby researched online & found that chemo induced neuropathy pain can be nearly (in my case 95%) eliminated with the Benfotiamine version of Vitamin B1 & the Methylbalamin version of Vitamin B12, when used together. My GynOnc had an Acupuncture Doc in her clinic & acupuncture restored around 25% of the feeling in my hands & feet...guess what...these EXTREMELY EFFECTIVE therapies ARE NOT covered, whether they work or not is irrelevant...so we paid CASH for all. Our GREAT P.O.S. ended on 5/31/13 because it was through COBRA & no matter who you tell you are willing to keep on paying the premium...when 18 months is up...it's $crew you!! So I spent 2 months researching new Medical Insurance Plans & found a good P.P.O. (not an excellent P.O.S. like I had, but good enough). The P.O.S. COVERED B.C. Pills & Maternity Care (not that important when you're over 60 & have had a hysterectomy), but it also covered other things better than the new P.P.O. We had the new P.P.O. plan from 6/1/13 to 12/31/13...when O'Care cancelled it. I DELIBERATELY bought the P.P.O. because it was cheaper than a comparable P.O.S. plan (to the old COBRA one), EXCEPT it didn't cover B.C. Pills & Maternity Care. I remember joking with the Agent about how I would gladly take the plan that saved me $200.00 by not offering these useless bits of coverage for a woman like me. When BHO said "if you like your coverage, you can keep it"...I thought I was DONE slogging through insurance plans...but au contraire!! In October I got my cancellation letter & I was back at it again!! Then WE HAD to "downgrade" AGAIN to an H.M.O. to keep it within budget. I spent HOURS on the phone & website with "NV HealthLink". My GynOnc doesn't take O'Care (& I don't blame her). So my co-pay to her WAS $45.00 on the excellent P.O.S., $60.00 on the good P.P.O. & now our "cash discount" brings the office visit cost down from $201.00 to $161.00. We are both unemployed & are near the end of our financial resources, so we are packing to move out of our rental house here in Las Vegas, put everything in storage & I will go stay with my Mom in K.C. while Hubby goes back to L.A. to look for work. Once he has a job & is settled, he will send for me. My last blood work came back showing the potential that the cancer is back...3 suspicious looking spots (will know more on 7/14), & if it is, I will have to start with a new GynOnc in K.C. I think I got the "cry me a river" thing LOCKED...BUT Hubby & I are both excellent "problem solvers"...so we don't expect "others" (including the gov't), to solve these problems for us!! Tomorrow...I start tomorrow to research my 4th Medical Insurance Plan in 14 months, (my crappy O'Care H.M.O. won't cover me in K.C.) so I will be "shopping for insurance" YET AGAIN!!
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24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
That increase in coverage comes largely from Medicaid expansion, which is not "insurance." It's welfare, plain and simple.

Cost increases are expected to balloon in the 2016-17 timeframe as the risk corridors phase out and insurers have to charge for what their customers are getting. The cost "savings" to date have been largely illusory, consisting of taking five dollars from one pocket, putting it in the other, and chalking it up as savings.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
A valiant, almost Clintonian, effort to parse away reality Stephen. Unfortunately, Medicaid is both welfare AND insurance -- those are not mutually exclusive categories. And yes, Medicaid expansion has played a significant role (40-50%) in the 10-15 million person expansion of insurance we saw this year.

Also, read the links I provided. I am not talking about premium costs. I am talking about the cost of health care. That is the key thing in the end, and the biggest threat to our long-term fiscal situation.

The slowdown in health care costs since the ACA was passed is a HUGE deal.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
NYChemist, PERHAPS some of the "slowdown in health care costs" is from O'Care VICTIMS like me REFUSING the MRI I needed, BECAUSE I couldn't afford the $300.00 co-pay!! I have friends (ALSO O'Care VICTIMS) who aren't going to the Dr. now for things they need BECAUSE they can't afford the co-pays & deductibles ON TOP of the premiums!! So, yes, you're right...this is a SLOWDOWN...when people don't go to the Dr., they don't pay co-pays & deductibles...at least NOT YET!!
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Stephen Green, RE: "2016-17 timeframe as the risk corridors phase out"...by that time "the savior" will be out of office & it will be someone else's "$hitpile" to clean up.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
and your cherry picked anecdotes about how many people are now with insurance is hilarious
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Cites? Or do we just take your word for it?
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
You're citing a poll instead of hard data? Really?

And Vox? A far-Left, echo-chamber site.

So, I looked at those numbers and the graph. Why is that for only urban consumers instead of all consumers? And those are nice stats, but it does not tell us the cause of any reduction in growth. Is it the narrow networks, the 10% reduction in Medicare/Medicaid reimbursements to doctors, folks just not going to the doctor, because they are "dead broke"? I guarantee you, health-insurance premiums are going up rapidly.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
I'm not 100% sure you are being serious, but presuming that you are...

I am citing population survey data. This is hard data, and the best data for assessing the total impact of the first year of the exchanges on uninsurance. I find it hard to believe you are completely unaware of the use of population surveys, but much of the "hard data"you have surely seen is obtained by that method (eg. unemployment rate, job growth, etc.).

Don't like Vox? Fine, that's silly, but just use the primary data that they link to. Or use the second, independent, link to primary data I included.

I am not sure why CPI is measured using urban consumers, or even exactly what that means in that context, but this is the standard measure of inflation in ubiquitous usage. The reasons for the reduction aren't entirely known, most economists believe it is a mix of the economy, long-term structural changes in health care, and further structural changes being driven by the ACA. The marginal contribution of each is currently a subject of debate.

As for your "guarantee", go ahead, but just know that the data contradicts your claim which makes somewhat a mockery of your word.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
My reply is to NYChemist.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Vox? BZZZZ, you lose.

The only reason this law hasn't been completely exposed as the unmitigated disaster it is, is because Barry has illegally postponed most of it.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
lylek, to those of us who had an Individual Plan, (Hubby is self employed) that we LIKED but was cancelled, we are SUFFERING NOW. We may be only 5% of the population...but rest assured the SUFFERING is coming for the rest of you!!
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Singin' to the choir, gypciz. It's going to get immeasurably worse. Speaking of immeasurable, maybe NYChemist can comment on the fact that CBO has stopped even trying to measure the coming cost of Ocare...because they simply can't--it's not even possible.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment

.
The financial collapse of Obamacare was a predictable outcome. Equally predictable is the demand that the program receive more and more federal subsidies so that "the poor uninsurables will not be left without health care". Not so predictable is how long t will take the Republicans to wilt under the fusillades fired at them by Obama (or the Hildabeest, take your choice) and the demagogues in Congress and their sycophants in the media.

There is slim to no chance this will end well for anybody in the US who needs healthcare or who pays taxes.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Signing up the sick was the plan. Wait till the next enrollment period opens.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Hobby Lobby won. Closely held corporations cannot be forced to cover contraceptions.

And, in the Harris decision, family caregivers don't have to join unions.

Two wins for the First Amendment.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
When I was using B.C. Pills there was NO WAY I wanted my employer OR the government to pay for them...ANYTIME someone else pays for something of yours they have some right to tell you you can't have it & that would have set me off!! Besides, I did NOT want my Employer knowing I used B.C. Pills anymore than I would have wanted them to know I was taking anti-depressants or insulin (neither of which I took, but the point is, if I had it would have been MY BUSINESS & NOT my employers or the government)!!
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
and now we will see the libs crying a river about this decision being so close that it should be repealed, the same people that told us to shut up about Obamacare because the supremes approved it.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Gerald Ford once famously refused to bail out New York City"

I remember that headline "Ford to City: Drop Dead"
Ah New York in the 1970s. whenever we ventured into the city and passed Times Square, there'd be the stench of urine, with prostitutes and drug dealers out in the open. And we had just fought a protracted and futile war, there was scandal in the White House, fighting in the Middle East, rising gasoline and food prices, and a bellicose Russia.

Or as I like to refer to it, the good old days.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
♡bamaCare!!!’s new & improved exchanges are more than 50% sicker and significantly older than the old & naughty individual markets they replaced. Maybe that’s why “sicker than average patients” will drive up rates in Michigan by up to 20%. Oh, who am I kidding — there’s no “maybe” about it.

At the very end of the 70s, my university's Student's Council was approached by an insurance company and persuaded to take a stupendous deal: students got an extensive insurance plan starting the next year for just $6 per year. The only catch was that enrollment had to be compulsory: every student had to participate. That caused some discomfort from those who thought the student activity fee was already too high and that extras like insurance should be something that people should be free to decline but even the naysayers were half-hearted with their objections since $6 was such a good deal. Near the end of our first year with this insurance plan, word came from the insurance company that rates would have to go up the next year. Apparently, our health plan was getting used a lot more than they or even we had anticipated. One of the leaders of the student council talked to the director of the clinic on campus where many of the students went for routine medical care and learned that the doctor's themselves were responsible for a lot of the extra costs. He said it was not unusual for students to go to the clinic complaining of itchy skin or rashes and for the doctors to recommend regular washing. The student would then complain that he was having trouble making ends meet. The doctor would then write him a prescription for ordinary hand soap, which the student would then claim on our compulsory health plan. For the second year of the plan, the premium quadrupled.

If the Obamacare administrators in Michigan managed to keep things down to only a 20% rate increase with patients that were actually significantly sicker than the norm, I can only say they did an amazing job. Our university saw a 400% increase with students that were NOT sicker than normal for our age group.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
This is just a standard business practice in insurance and many other areas - offer a teaser rate for the first year knowing it will lose, then try like heck to hang on the second year with big increases.

Small companies buying health insurance face this nearly 100% of the time, but in olden days were somewhat restrained from switching every year because of preexisting condition limitations.

Just wait until the Obamacare for corps tries to fly into action.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Great story -- thanks for that.

Another one of the reports I'd bookmarked for this column didn't survive editing, but it claimed the big rate hikes have been pushed back to 2016-2017. Michigan didn't accomplish anything special; it's just that we won't know the real costs of this law until the risk corridors expire and insurers have had a couple years paying out on the new ACA-compliant plans.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Interesting. And not remotely surprising. Hide the true costs until the new system is firmly established and backing out of it is practically unthinkable, then start charging the true costs. If the period of hidden costs just happens to get them beyond the next election, that's just a convenient coincidence, right?
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Ah, healthcare by ambush.

It's the Woodstock Jihad lying in wait plan.

By lying in wait I'm not talking about the VA "attrition out patriots" plan.

Well, then again...maybe they are the same thing.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
O'Care is the "new VA"!!
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Making an @ss out of Kruggers is a side benefit, not a goal.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Actually, he does a good job of that by himself, without any outside help.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
Exactly. We could have watched Krugman make an ass of himself every day *without* destroying the healthcare system and private insurance market, abridging the 1st Amendment, and bankrupting the country.

So by this metric, clearly ACA wasn't worth it.
24 weeks ago
24 weeks ago Link To Comment
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