health care

Why pass it if it needs fixing?

Democrats have signaled recently that they’re interested in “fixing” the health care reform act. Even President Obama has said he’s willing to work towards a fix. My question is why did they bother passing the damn thing if it needed to be fixed almost immediately?

The truth is that the people who voted on the bill didn’t bother to read it. They apparently listened to Nancy Pelosi and thought they had to pass it so they could find out what’s in it. That’s never a good way to do business, especially with such a huge segment of the American economy.

If the bill was flawed enough to warrant fixing it almost immediately after it’s passed, surely this was a bill that should never have been passed. The issue was contentious enough the first time around, and it definitely will be again. The only problem is that this time it could make the bill worse.

Make no mistake, just repealing the individual mandate will be worse. The mandate is essential to keep insurance companies afloat after they’re told they can’t refuse to cover someone, and also told that they can’t charge them what would be necessary to cover them. All this despite the fact that some studies indicate that only 1% of the American population are denied coverage or help with medical bills in any way.

All of this underlies a problem with Congress itself. In an effort to appear to be doing something, they’ll actually do just about anything. They will pass laws to address perceived problems without taking a clear look at what is needed. You would think that after a year of battling, the health care reform bill would be as close to perfect. But it’s not. It’s just as flawed as it ever was, with only the public option being taken off the table. That’s because in their effort to do “something”, they didn’t look to make sure they were doing the right things.

David Axelrod credits Mitt Romney for parts of ObamaCare

Like it or not fans of Mitt Romney, this is a valid criticism that you had better get used to as we enter the Republican presidential primary:

Top Obama advisor David Axelrod, who left the White House last week to lay the groundwork for the president’s reelection campaign, is already needling a potential Republican rival.

In an interview with USA Today, Axelrod goes out of his way to credit Mitt Romney for implementing a universal health care plan when he was governor of Massachusetts that shares many similarities with the White House-backed law that has proved so unpopular with Republicans.

“We got some good ideas from him,” said Axelrod in a clear effort to highlight Romney’s involvement with implementing a law similar to that which is so disliked among Republicans nationwide.

Romney has stood by the 2006 implementation of universal health care in Massachusetts, but has said it was drafted to address Massachusetts’s problems, no those of the entire nation.
As for the Republican field as a whole, Axelrod said it is the “most unfathomable… of my lifetime.”

“I don’t think anybody in the media or in either party can tell you with any degree of certainty who the Republican nominee will be,” he said.

The individual mandate, the centerpiece of the health care “reform” law passed last year, was also a part of the Heritage Foundation-backed law in Massachusetts, which has proved to be a drain on the state’s budget.

Cato scholars respond to the Obama’s State of the Union address

While President Barack Obama proposed on Tuesday night to cut spending, increase “investment” - a code word for more spending, reform the tax code, among many other pledges and announcements of new policy initiatives.

A post-speech analysis by the National Taxpayers Union found that despite the five-year spending freeze proposal, Obama’s proposals will have a net cost of $21 billion, and that’s on the low-end of estimates.

Some of the policy experts from the Cato Institute weighed in on the various proposals and themes in the State of the Union, ranging from the speeding freeze, to high-speed rail, trade and ObamaCare:

Cannon on PolitiFact’s “Lie of the Year”

At the beginning of the year, our own Zach Holiday took on the “fact checking” website PolitiFact’s “Lie of the Year,” noting that it wan’t they got it wrong. Yesterday, Michael Cannon, a health policy expert from the Cato Institute, also laid into PolitiFact:

ObamaCare is not a government takeover, I learned from PolitiFact, because it “uses the private health insurance system to expand health care coverage.”

But wait. In my research, I found that distinction between public and private to be illusory: what difference is there between a public system where the government taxes and spends your money, and a “private” system where the government forces you to spend your money in the same way?

“It is irrelevant,” I wrote, “whether we describe medical resources (e.g., hospitals, employees) as ‘public’ or ‘private.’ What matters – what determines real as opposed to nominal ownership – is who controls the resources.” I detailed how making private health insurance compulsory – as ObamaCare does – “would give government as much control over the nation’s health care sector as a compulsory government program.”

I even quoted President Obama’s health adviser Jeanne Lambrew, who acknowledges, “the government role in socialized medicine systems ranges from complete government ownership and salaried facilities and providers to public financing of private insurance and providers” (emphasis added) – which is exactly how ObamaCare operates.

Liberty Links: Morning Reads for Tuesday, January 25th

Below is a collection of several links that we didn’t get around to writing about, but still wanted to post for readers to examine. The stories typically range from news about prominent figures in the liberty movement, national politics, the nanny state, foreign policy and free markets.

Liberty Links: Morning Reads for Monday, January 24th

Below is a collection of several links that we didn’t get around to writing about, but still wanted to post for readers to examine. The stories typically range from news about prominent figures in the liberty movement, national politics, the nanny state, foreign policy and free markets.

Obama Doesn’t Care About Parents

I found this post from President Obama’s Twitter feed to be particularly bizarre:

#iamherefor my mother, and all the Americans who are forced to spend time arguing w/ insurance companies instead of focusing on getting well

What about the parents who forced to spend time arguing with unionized public school bureaucrats instead of sending their kids to a decent school?

The Democratic Senate voted recently to make sure D.C. area families will stay in that frustrating situation and to take away a chance at controlling their own lives.

Would ObamaCare Kill Medical Innovation?

See Video

No American Should Have to Choose Between Health Insurance and Getting Drunk

See Video

Politicians Waiting With Bated Breath for the Lion to Sleep

Sheesh, it only took Nancy Pelosi a few minutes after Ted Kennedy’s death to use him for political gain. Her office sent out a press release at 2:30 am this morning, part of which read, “Ted Kennedy’s dream of quality health care for all Americans will be made real this year because of his leadership and his inspiration.”

The Wall Street Journal compiled a list of the earliest opportunists who are also using his death to promote their political agenda.

The views and opinions expressed by individual authors are not necessarily those of other authors, advertisers, developers or editors at United Liberty.