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July 23, 2009

Obama's Funding Mechanism: Deliberately Hidden Costs

It occurs to me that this would all be straightforward, were Obama not determined to lie.

Consider: Providing health care coverage to millions of uninsured is a straightforward proposition, done honestly: You need only jack up taxes by 10-25% on everyone paying taxes and you're all set.

But Obama can't do that, not quite, not having pledged again and again to not raise taxes on the middle class.

But he still needs that funding mechanism.

But his funding mechanism will be primarily disguised costs, and intentionally disguised costs at that.

The simple fact he is imposing rationing on the system and demanding that private insurers stop covering supposedly wasteful tests and expensive drugs is one big disguised cost.*

So everyone currently with insurance will get less insurance in the future, less treatments and drugs covered, maybe for the same price, but probably at a higher price. The fact that your policy was just reduced in value from $10,000 to $8500 (as it covers less) and yet you're still paying for the $10,000 policy is a hidden cost, right out of the gate. You just lost $1500, but Obama hopes you don't notice.

You'll have to pay out-of-pocket for some drugs and treatments formerly paid for by the insurance policy you're paying for. Reducing costs? Of course not; it's raising costs, and diverting your hard-earned money towards the uninsured, but hopefully you won't notice it if it's not actually called a "tax."

Creating an inevitable incentive for businesses to dump you out of private coverage and into the public system? Yet another hidden cost. (Well, hidden now as he can lie about it; it won't be well-hidden when it happens. But by then, of course, private insurance will be crippled and almost gone, so there won't be any chance of reversing it.)

Remember that Obama is determined to pass cap-and-tax at the same time, too. Why? Because he sees the carbon tax as a critical new revenue source for... paying the increased costs of his health care. But once again, he wants the costs to be hidden, embedded in the price of every product and imposed at the point-of-sale by businesses themselves, so that no one notices the government has just stealthily imposed a national sales tax on everyone.

All of these confusing new bureaucratic structures are designed with one goal in mind: To impose costs on taxpayers, but in a subterranean, built-into-the-structure-of-the-thing manner, to hide the fact he's raising costs on taxpayers to provide new benefits to non-taxpayers.

* Note, also, that when people complain about HMOs and insurers, their primary complaint is not that their HMO or insurer is too generous and too willing to cover expensive treatments and drugs. It's the opposite, of course. And yet here is Obama proposing that insurers reduce their willingness to pay for treatment, as some kind of "solution."

Isn't this awfully strange? People complain loudest about their insurance not covering certain treatments, and Obama's "solution" is to create a bureaucracy intended to compel them to not cover even more treatments.

Oh, and he also claims that, somehow, this new layer of bureaucracy and review (review to make sure insurers aren't being overly generous with brand-name drugs) will reduce paperwork and administrative costs.


(Taken out of last post to be stand-alone post.)


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posted by Ace at 02:49 PM

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