Another great one from Robert Samuelson @ WaPo: Obamacare’s rhetoric vs. its reality.
“The argument about Obamacare is often framed as a moral issue. It’s the caring and compassionate against the cruel and heartless. That’s the rhetoric; the reality is different. Many of us who oppose Obamacare don’t do so because we enjoy seeing people suffer. We believe that, in an ideal world, everyone would have insurance. But we also think that Obamacare has huge drawbacks that outweigh its plausible benefits.
It creates powerful pressures against companies hiring full-time workers — precisely the wrong approach after the worst economic slump since the Depression. There will be more bewildering regulations, more regulatory uncertainties, more unintended side effects and more disappointments. A costly and opaque system will become more so.”
I’d argue it’s not a bug but a feature. The goal was and continues to be a slow march to single payer. Design the incentives such that employers drop coverage and pay the penalties, funnel everyone into government exchanges, which grow so large we just merge them all into a single payer system. Control costs with long lines and end-of-life rationing of care as they do elsewhere. But how will the world’s other single payer systems free ride off the R&D and innovation of America once we no longer provide it?