Peter Suderman at Reason:
At this point, the White House has backed off so many of its own definitions of success that it’s not clear what would constitute a failure. The administration seems to be defining Obamacare success if it continues to exist.
More: The Administration’s Continually Shifting Standards for Obamacare’s Success – Hit & Run : Reason.com.
From an excellent post by John C. Goodman:
After John Templeton renounced his citizenship and moved to Nassau where there is no income tax, the federal government imposed penalties — to discourage other wealthy people from doing the same thing. That was because the government wants to tax them. But when a wealthy person expatriates, the distribution of income and wealth becomes more equal. Should we reverse course and encourage the John Templetons of this world to get out of town. If equality is a serious goal, we should at least relax the penalties.
Read more: In Defense of Inequality | John Goodman’s Health Policy Blog | NCPA.org.
From the Wall Street Journal:
In many states, an elderly person may own a home valued at $802,000, plus home furnishings, jewelry and an automobile of uncapped value while receiving long-term Medicaid support. In addition, they are allowed to have various life-insurance policies, retirement accounts with unlimited assets, $115,920 in assets for a spouse, income from Social Security, and a defined-benefit pension plan. By most standards, such a household would be considered wealthy.
via Mark Warshawsky: Millionaires on Medicaid – WSJ.com.
via the National Center for Policy Analysis
From the Wall Street Journal:
Thousands of people are cramming in tests, elective procedures and specialist visits before year’s end, seeking out top research hospitals and physician groups that will be left out of some 2014 insurance plans under the new health law, health-care providers say.
Many insurers offering plans under the law are slimming down their networks of doctors and hospitals in a bid to lower the cost of policies, which begin coverage Wednesday.
Health insurers are especially focused on paring academic teaching and research hospitals from their networks because they generally charge more than community hospitals for similar services. …
Some 70% of new plans under the health law offer relatively narrow networks compared with many current plans, according to a recent McKinsey & Co. report.
People whose health insurance plans were canceled as a result of Obamacare will not be subject to Obamacare’s penalty for being uninsured next year, the administration announced tonight. People whose plans were canceled and are having difficulty paying for a new plan will also be allowed to purchase catastrophic health plans from the exchanges, which had previously been available only to people under the age of 30. …
… it’s hard to justify offering this exemption to the previously insured but not to those who were previously uninsured. A person’s plan is canceled, and as a result that person is not subject to the mandate. But if that person was not insured this year, a person who is otherwise exactly the same is subject to the fine? Good luck selling that one.
via Obama Administration Delays Individual Mandate for People Whose Insurance Policies Were Canceled – Hit & Run : Reason.com.
From The New York Times:
Many in New York’s professional and cultural elite have long supported President Obama’s health care plan. But now, to their surprise, thousands of writers, opera singers, music teachers, photographers, doctors, lawyers and others are learning that their health insurance plans are being canceled and they may have to pay more to get comparable coverage, if they can find it.
via Obamacare’s Atomistic Individualism | Cato @ Liberty.
In a Rose Garden speech last month, President Obama defended his health care law, and offered some anecdotes about people it would help. One of those people was Jessica Sanford, who’d written to President Obama describing her health insurance predicament. …
Sanford’s story illustrates how some the Obamacare stories that might initially look like successes might not be once the data and pricing issues are all sorted out, and offers a reminder that sometimes the process of getting things straight can take weeks. That’s why we ought to remain skeptical about the White House’s push to improve the enrollment experience for the “vast majority of users.” It’s not just the user end that’s broken. And even if the website works well enough to allow most people who want to enroll to get through the process, there’s no guarantee that it will continue to work once they’re inside the system.
More: Woman Who Obama Cited as Obamacare Success Story Now Says She Can’t Afford Health Coverage – Hit & Run : Reason.com.
President Obama suggested that frustrated customers call the 800 number, so Alice did. The woman from healthcare.gov said she could mail her some information, which would arrive in three weeks. “Can’t you email it to me?” Alice asked. We’re not set up for that, the ObamaCare operator replied. Once the application arrives, Alice is to fill out the forms, mail them back, and hope for speedy processing. It had better be fast because at that point there will only be about a month before her coverage lapses…
I Can’t Believe I’m Reading This | John Goodmans Health Policy Blog | NCPA.org.
From NBC News:
President Obama repeatedly assured Americans that after the Affordable Care Act became law, people who liked their health insurance would be able to keep it. But millions of Americans are getting or are about to get cancellation letters for their health insurance under Obamacare, say experts, and the Obama administration has known that for at least three years.
More: Obama administration knew millions could not keep their health insurance – Investigations.
Almost 1.5 Million Insurance Cancellations Under ObamaCare.
Even more disturbing, though, is the attempt by “others who are sympathetic to the administration” to explain away this “seeming contradiction” by figuratively harrumphing and pointing out the ‘reality’ of the “difference between political talking points intended to sell a controversial law and the intricacies of” the realities that underlie that legislation. These administrative sympathizers, in effect, excuse the president’s lying. These ‘sympathizers’ have the gall to excuse a falsehood on the grounds that that falsehood was meant to “sell a controversial law.” (more)
“Yes, You Can Keep Your Health Plan” or, What Part of *Screw You* Don’t You Understand? - Reason.com
President Obama(in)famously said, “If you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan” under the Affordable Care Act. As it turns out, not so much. Hundreds of thousands of Americans, it turns out, are receiving letters telling them that their existing coverage just isn’t good enough to satisfy the strict requirements of the Obamacare law, and that they’ll have to sign up for new policies. Those new policies come with new stipulations, and new price tags. Which is to say, it doesn’t matter if you like your health care plan, since you probably can’t keep it.
via You Can Keep Your Health Insurance Under Obamacare? Not So Much. – Hit & Run : Reason.com.