#ObamaCare Is Textbook Bad Economic Policy

The bad economist sees only what immediately strikes the eye; the good economist also looks beyond. The bad economist sees only the direct consequences of a proposed course; the good economist looks also at the longer and indirect consequences. The bad economist sees only what the effect of a given policy has been or will be on one particular group; the good economist inquires also what the effect of the policy will be on all groups.

Henry Hazlitt, Economics in One Lesson

If you have twenty minutes or so, go and read the first two or three chapters at the link above. Economics in One Lesson explains where the failures of modern economists from Keynes to Krugman stem from, and offers concrete examples from minimum wage laws to labor unions to public housing. Bonus, it’s easy to read, so high schools and colleges still use it as a primer.

Today I’m going to read the failures of ObamaCare against the ideas in the above quote. While they don’t explain all of the failures of this massive heap of garbage posing as legislation, it’s a place to start.

The bad economist sees only the direct consequences of a proposed course

One of the much touted benefits of ObamaCare is that “children” can stay on their parents’ plans until the age of 26. This is great if you’re an adult under the age of 26, but in practice it takes people whose parents are insured off the market for eight years at a time when your average adult is at his or her most healthy. So is it really any surprise that only one in four people between the ages of nineteen and twenty-nine are even aware of the exchanges? Most of these people don’t even have to care.

The problem is that ObamaCare relies on the young and healthy to effectively subsidize older people and those with pre-existing conditions. In order to win over younger voters to a law that ultimately will cost them a lot of money, Democrats threw a monkey wrench in their own system.

There are other examples of where Democrats didn’t look at the consequences of this beast long-term, but I think that that’s the most obvious.



The bad economist sees only what the effect of a given policy has been or will be on one particular group

ObamaCare was created to make health insurance more affordable to people who didn’t have it, either because they couldn’t afford it or because existing conditions made it impossible to afford insurance. The general figure I’ve seen when estimating how many people fall under this category is fifteen percent. This PBS link has it at around thirteen.

I’m not sure how the percentage breaks down among that thirteen percent, but people who couldn’t get health insurance due to pre-existing conditions are now guaranteed health insurance, which means that people who are already sick and guaranteed to have to undergo expensive procedures are covered. The other eighty-seven percent of people will have to pay for these expensive procedures (remember, the procedures are guaranteed to happen) in the form of higher insurance premiums. Many people who buy their own policies directly are already feeling the pain on this front.

Second, people with lower cost catastrophic insurance are being booted from their plans because those plans don’t bring in enough money to pay for the people with pre-existing conditions. The oft repeated contemptible lie from President Obama that those who liked their current policy could keep it is simply unaffordable in the context of this boondoggle. (Note: I suspect that people who read this blog already read Ace of Spades HQ, but if not the people over there have been doing some amazing work.)

Once again, to gain the votes of thirteen percent of the population, Democrats saddled the other eighty-seven percent with higher bills.

Look, I’ve been writing a lot about ObamaCare lately, and I promise that there will be hot chicks again soon. Remember that when conservatives dared to question this obvious expensive failure in the last few years, we were called racists, terrorists, hostage takers, and slammed with a dumb sexual slur. Democrats own this failure, and unlike Benghazi, Fast and Furious, the New Black Panthers, Solyndra, and every other scandal that the media ignored, just about everyone is going to have to take a bite out of this shit sandwich. When that happens, it won’t matter to the low information voters what the nice lady on TV said about Barack Obama.

Update: Reblogged by Mike G. If I don’t keep up on linking back to people, please forgive me. I do appreciate the assists.

Update II: Linked by Wombat-socho and Regular Right Guy.


One comment