In Gottlieb's view the president is basically busing high risk applicants into a lower risk pool. Those who can will flee the neighborhood. That will leave only those who have nowhere else to go stuck in it, making Obamacare the health insurance equivalent of Detroit.
In the end, like Detroit, the Obamacre residual will be supported by public money and not by any sustainable actuarial risk sharing. They inmates will be subsidized by the state, which always had to be the case and not by so-called "savings". Megan McArdle writes that this was obvious to anyone who cared to look, but too many preferred to hear the lie.
Mathematically, two things must be true: There are some people in this country who are losing their current insurance and gaining better insurance at a lower cost, and there are some people in this country who are losing their current insurance and getting worse insurance at a higher cost. And there are some who are now getting insurance they couldn’t afford at all before. ...
It’s absolutely true that every policy wonk who was writing or speaking about the law in 2009 and 2010 understood that it would mean premiums going up for at least some people, many of whom would lose insurance that they would have preferred to keep. Who it would be depended a bit on how the law unfolded, of course, but at a minimum, young, healthy people who made more than $46,000 a year could expect to pay higher premiums for the same level of coverage. They had to; mathematically, it was not possible for coverage to expand and everyone’s premiums to go down -- not unless you spent more in premium subsidies than the government could afford.
But I think it’s also clearly true that the majority of the public did not understand this. In 2008, the Barack Obama campaign told them that their premiums would go down under the new health-care law. And the law’s supporters believed it.
And it remains so. Thus even though "top tech experts from Google, Red Hat, Oracle [have been] sent to save ObamaCare website" they can only tinker with the machinery of motion. They cannot alter the destination, which is Healthcare a la Detroit. At most the programmers can only efficiently implement a faster way of reaching a bad end.
It's not insurance. It never was. Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick offered what is probably the ultimate defense of Obamacare. “The thing to remember is that the ACA is not a website, it’s a value statement. It’s about whether we believe health is a public good.”
The presumption is that "if you build it they will come." Unfortunately things don't always work out that way. If the president's Middle East track record is any guide, "if he builds it then you had better run".
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Article printed from Belmont Club: https://pjmedia.com/richardfernandez
URL to article: https://pjmedia.com/richardfernandez/2013/10/31/death-spiral