Remember how the so-called Affordable Care Act (a.k.a. Obamacare) was sold to the public on the grounds that it would reduce everyone’s premiums and increase competition (among other lies)?
It’s not accidental that the exact opposite has happened. The New York Times reports on the continuing trend:
Premiums for midlevel health plans under the Affordable Care Act will increase by an average of 25 percent next year, while consumers in some states will find significantly fewer insurance companies offering coverage, the federal government said Monday.
The claim that the law would lower everyone’s healthcare wasn’t just an inaccurate prediction we can only look back on now with hindsight to see the error of. It was a deliberate lie. The whole point of the law’s individual mandate was to force younger, healthier individuals to pay more in order to subsidize the costs to the sick of health insurance.
Then there was the lie that nobody would lose their existing health care plan or their doctor under Obamacare. When people started losing their plans and their doctors, Obama claimed that “Competition and consumer choice are actually making insurance affordable” (September 2013) and asserted that those who’d lost their plans would still be “benefiting from more choice and competition”, thanks to Obamacare.
Nonsense, of course. In fact, the law outlawed competition by dictating what insurers cover and limiting consumer choice.
Naturally, the response of die-hard statists to such predictable consequences of Obamacare as increasing premiums and reduced competition is to blame the market and to call for even more government intervention to try to solve the problems caused by government intervention in the first place.
Here’s how the aforementioned New York Times piece closes:
Stabilizing the insurance marketplace could be a major challenge for Mrs. Clinton, the Democratic candidate for president, if she wins, as opinion polls suggest she will.
The assurances by the Obama administration on Monday differed in tone from Mrs. Clinton’s remarks on the campaign trail. She has supported the Affordable Care Act, but denounced “skyrocketing out-of-pocket health costs” and said the federal government should have the power to block or modify unreasonable rate increases so coverage would be more affordable.
So what’s Hillary Clinton’s proposed solution to the problems created by the law she’s supported? Even more government intervention and price-fixing.
That, of course, would only further exacerbate the problem of decreasing competition as insurers unable to maintain a profit margin would be forced out of business, which would in turn only exacerbate the problem of rising costs and shrinking networks of doctors whose services are covered.
Clinton’s delusional belief that the federal government can just legislate away the law of supply and demand is unfortunately a widely held one. What the US really needs is for there to be a free market in health care, with real market prices.
The fundamental fallacy underlying the worldview of supporters of Obamacare or a “single-payer” system (i.e., a government monopoly) is this: Government bureaucrats acting at best arbitrarily (assuming only the best of intentions and absence of corruption) do not know better than the market with its pricing system how to efficiently direct scarce resources toward productive ends as determined by the will of consumers — that is, by all of us.
The solution is to free prices, not, as the war criminal Clinton believes, to engage in even more price fixing. But good luck getting that idea through the thick skulls of the busybodies in Washington who want to control every aspect of our lives.
On that note, it’s also worth pointing out that the government has no authority under the Constitution to force individuals to make purchases in the market against their will — which is to say that Obamacare is completely unconstitutional.
The fact that so many Americans unquestioningly accept the federal government usurping such a tyrannical power is frightening.
Addendum: Recalling How Obamacare Was Sold to the Public on Lies
“That means that no matter how we reform health care, we will keep this promise to the American people: If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor, period. If you like your health-care plan, you’ll be able to keep your health-care plan, period. No one will take it away, no matter what.”
– President Obama, speech to the American Medical Association, June 15, 2009 (as the health-care law was being written.)
“And if you like your insurance plan, you will keep it. No one will be able to take that away from you. It hasn’t happened yet. It won’t happen in the future.”
– Obama, remarks in Portland, April 1, 2010, after the health-care law was signed into law.
Here’s Obama repeatedly lying that Obamacare would reduce annual premiums by an average of $2,500 per family:
Here’s Nancy Pelosi on July 1, 2012, lying that “everybody will have lower rates and better care” under Obamacare:
And here’s White House Spokesperson Jay Carney in early 2013 still repeating the lie that Obamacare “addresses the costs and lowers the costs, long-term, of health care”: