Saturday, December 12, 2015

Big Government: Smart People, Dumb Choice. . . Obamacare

Edward Morrissey is a conservative. In the “Fiscal Times,” an independent paper, he catalogs the problems with Obamacare today, five years later:
  • Obamacare has depressed job growth, producing a labor force about 2 million full-time-equivalent workers smaller in 2025 than it would have been without Obamacare, with taxpayers subsidizing the health care of those not working; 
  • medical costs are escalating at a higher rate, up 5% in 2014, well above the rate of inflation, and the fastest it had grown since 2007, with Medicaid spending up 11% because of Obamacare expansions, Medicare up 5.5%, and even private insurance up 4.4% because of Obamacare; 
  • barely a dent has been made in the numbers of uninsured, reducing the percentage of U.S. residents without health insurance by just 2.7% from 13.9% to 11.1%, and; 
  • insurers are either exiting the markets or failing altogether, with the rise in premiums in 2014, followed by their explosion in 2015 along with deductibles so high that many decided not to be insured at all having led to over half of Obamacare’s co-ops collapsing this year, with providers who took their clients stuck with the bills, with nonprofit startups backed by Obamacare loans out of money before paying their medical claims, with the co-op Health Republic Insurance of New York failure leaving $165 million in unpaid bills, and 64% of New York providers waiting for payment they may never see. 
Why do otherwise intelligent people actually seem to believe government works better than a competitive private sector? Couldn’t any objective thinker in 2010 have predicted that Obamacare would be sinking within five years?

Adam Smith was right in 1776. He's right 240 years later.  Don’t put the economy into the hands of a few bright people at the top. Let the market sort out good ideas from bad, in the process putting the talents and skills of millions of hard-working people into play. Accept that people driven by self-interest existing in a sea of others pursuing the same objective and helped by a fair marketplace will create jobs and prosperity--as they have in East Asia over the past half-century.

Conservative Kevin Williamson wisely reminds us that progressives “falsely believe profits to be net deductions from the sum of the public good rather than measures of the creation of real social value.”

We need jobs coming from “creation of real social value.” Why can’t smart people accept profit as a measure of social value, then support the resulting smart, job creating choices?

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