Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Ed Rogers Is Terrified That Obamacare will Succeed

Ed Rogers, one of the Washington Post's political demagogues blogging in the PostPartisan (get it?) section of their website, blathers about Obamacare:
Since I’m always admonishing others to admit the obvious, I will now make an admission of my own: I’m rooting for Obamacare to fail. And I encourage others to do the same.
If you're familiar with Rogers or his history, that's really all that he needed to say. It would stand as a naked admission of his political bias, and his preference to cause harm to the millions of people who will benefit - and are already benefiting- from the PPACA if it gives advantage to the Republican Party. And if he left it at that, it would be fair to point out that people of Rogers' ilk used to go ballistic over criticism of George W. Bush, pretending that any criticism constituted a near-treasonous (or... should I say treasonish) wish for the nation to fail. But... he can't stop there.
I do not hope the uninsured stay uninsured, but Obamacare is not the solution.
You know what would have been a good follow-up to that claim? A proposed solution. Do you think we got one? Get real. The reason Rogers and his ilk are jumping on the "Glitchgate" bandwagon is because they don't have any ideas.
Obamacare is a harmful policy that will be bad for the country if it is forced upon Americans and the American economy.
You know what would have been a good follow-up to that hyperbolic claim? Any evidence that it is connected to reality. Do you think we got one? Yeah, same answer.
Why would anyone hope it limps into existence and settles like a cancer on the U.S. health-care system?
Wow... people having health insurance is like cancer. Who would have thunk.
The president asked his critics to stop rooting for its failure, but I, for one, refuse to do so.
And there he circles back to my first point, but again he finds himself unable to stop.
Also, the failure of Obamacare would do a lot to expose the false promises of big government programs.
Let's see... the three biggest ticket items are Medicare, a highly popular and effective health insurance program, Social Security, a highly popular and effective program to provide retirement benefits and disability insurance, and the military. Which of these does Rogers believe will be proved to be a "false promise" by a government program that, rather than following the successful lead of Medicare, compels people to buy insurance from private companies?
President Obama has been and always will be an unapologetic promoter of classic liberal activism.
Do you have the first clue what "classic liberal activism" means? If it were a little less polite, it might be a meaningless phrase Rogers picked up from Rush Limbaugh.... Does Hannity use that phrase? Seriously - when I search for the phrase "classic liberal activism" in quotes, Google returns a whopping six results, three of which are the same screed from WorldNetDaily, Joseph Farah's gift to reactionary trolls who want to play journalist. Perhaps that's Rogers' source?
Liberals think that Washington knows best and that increasing citizens’ dependency on government is a goal in and of itself.
When the facts fail you, there's nothing like a hollow man argument to save the day. Which liberals hold that belief, Ed? Can you name even one? Didn't think so.
Like all Republicans, I believe we need smaller government.
Straight from the hollow man to the false generalization. History tells us that Republican Presidents like to talk about smaller government, while nonetheless significantly expanding the size, reach and cost of government. Going back to 1982, which presidents have presided over the slowest growth in annualized federal spending? Clinton and Obama, by significant measure. If Republicans believe in smaller government, why do they have such a difficult time voting for politicians who reduce the size of government, implementing policies to reduce the size of government, or applauding the presidents who actually walk that walk? (Which again takes us back to my first point).
Obamacare is the opposite of a smaller, less obtrusive government.
No, as Rogers would figure out if he were to actually think about the issues, it is not. Millions of people are trying to sign up for health insurance through the exchanges because they want insurance. Millions of people went to the exchange site the day it opened for that very reason. Rogers may sit around with his wealthy Republican peers, sniveling about how ordinary people don't really want health insurance, but the fact is that millions of people like the provisions of the PPACA that are already in effect (such as allowing kids to stay on their parents's health insurance until the age of 24) and are eager to finally get health insurance that they can afford or that will cover their pre-existing conditions. In terms of being "smaller", quite obviously the program is designed to minimize the public role. The opposite of that would be single payer.
The failure of Obamacare would discourage and hopefully deter those who think a bigger, more domineering U.S. government is the answer to our problems.
Actually, the lesson would be that we should do the sensible thing, and follow the lead of pretty much any other western democracy - all of which have national health insurance programs of one sort or another that are both popular and largely successful. It is the adherence to "free market" principles that keeps this nation's health insurance costs so high, while providing the average American with less care than they would be able to obtain under a less costly "socialized" model.
And most important, the horrors of this debacle and the collapse of Obamacare would have a chilling effect on politicians who want to promote big government solutions.
And there you get to the real problem - Rogers is cheering for Obamacare to fail because his bladder trembles at the thought that it might succeed. And then governments might do crazy things, like adequately funding public education and fixing roads and bridges.


  1. I have to confess that my feelings about the Affordable Care Act vary between ambivalent and negative. I don't think it will have the cost saving advertised and more importantly I don't think it will arrest the cost inflation that is killing the current system. On the other hand, what we have now is so clearly broken that I have a hard time being overly critical of any effort to change it . . . and although I still prefer the "free market" approach a certain two law students proposed 20 years ago, I know that won't happen either . . . CWD

    1. I'm not sure what those two law students were thinking, doing crazy stuff like completing the actual assignment.

      If you were in my position, as you would be if you weren't in a cushy job with comprehensive health benefits, one "big deal" element of ObamaCare would appeal to you -- the fact that you can't be deemed "uninsurable" or have your rates jacked to the point of being unaffordable due to a pre-existing condition, and if you get insurance face a waiting period of a year before you can get coverage for that condition.

    2. As you are aware, but diplomatically omit, I am in a similar "factual" position to you in regards to pre-existing conditions. That said, I am a little curious about how well that provision will work our pragmatically. Does the system allow for any change in pricing due to any factor (age, geography, etc) I will be interested to see if we don't find insurers trying to use "allowable" criteria in an unallowable weigh to "jack-up" the costs of those of us they never really wanted to insure anyway . . . CWD

    3. As the exchanges operate state-by-state, with no national insurance option (e.g., a so-called "public option" or a Medicare buy-in), prices do vary by state. Also, the availability of plans will vary within a given state, so prices and options can vary depending upon where you live within a state.

      Premiums do increase with age. Premiums also increase if you're a smoker.