I have been purposefully avoiding blogging about the health care bill for a couple of reasons. First, while I did not like the bill in its current form, but I was waiting to see what was in the final version of the house bill. I guess I will be waiting awhile longer yet, but at some point moderates and Conservatives are going to have to each give some or it will become an albatross that drags them all down. Obamacare is failing. When the bill begins making its way back through process I will begin dissecting the details and trying to determine if the impact will be good or bad for my family. Second, thinking about Obamacare makes me angry. Not “oh shucks I forgot to buy stamps” kind of angry, but go outside and kick a tree stump during a profanity laced tirade kind of angry. Like millions of Americans I was independently purchasing healthcare at a reasonable cost, with a reasonable deductible which allowed me to see a doctor I liked before the advent of Obamacare. Obamacare treated me to higher premiums, skyrocketing deductibles and having to go through the pain of changing plans and finding new doctors. (Essentially a colossal expensive pain in the a$$.) However, in the twisted minds of Leftist Pundits like CNN’s Chris Cuomo, the problem is not Obamacare, it is because I am “cheap”.
Let me give some context to this revelation. During a contentious exchange between Chris Cuomo and Mary Katherine Ham on the Obamacare replacement, Ham was explaining her position on balancing essential health benefits versus insurance company requirements when the following exchange occurred.
Ham – “On the essential health benefits, the idea that you gut all the essential health benefits and then there are no requirements of insurance companies is just not true. This is a highly regulated industry and it would go back to the state regulations. So there would be plenty of those preserved. And the pre-existing conditions part, which you’re discussing, is part of this package.”
Ham – “That’s part of balancing this whole act and trying to bring down these prices because you, sir, are paying for pediatric dental even if you don’t have children. That is a problem.”
Cuomo – “There was a reason…”
Ham – “Yeah, because liberals love federal power.”
Cuomo – “Look, you can be cheap about it or you can look at the facts. You make your choice.”
Ham – “You can be nasty about it, or you can listen to me.”
Cuomo – “Answer my question.”
Cuomo – “State by state, you’ve got different regulations, right? The reason they built it into the ACA was because states weren’t covering it because you having short falls.
Ham – They were not covering all of the things, sometimes including pediatric dental for single men with no children. …These things bring up the prices. People are getting coverage that they cannot use because it is so expensive. One of the ways you can deal with that is by cutting some of these ‘essential health benefits’ because some of them are indeed not essential. And you could give people more flexibility to have slightly less expensive and slightly less comprehensive plans, which is what many young people would like to buy.”
In Chris Cuomo’s world view if you are a male and you have an issue with the government mandating that you not only purchase health insurance, but that the insurance include coverage for uterus care then you are “cheap”. No Cuomo your ridiculous ad hominem attack is cheap. It is you trying to prescribe motive to conservatives in order to paint them as greedy and heartless to sell the narrative that the only possible way for everyone to receive healthcare is if it is done at the barrel of a gun through government mandate. The level of frugality of those who oppose Obamacare has not basis on Conservative arguments that there is no constitutionality for the government to be involved in healthcare in the first place or that higher quality healthcare can be delivered more efficiently and affordably if the government would only get out of the way and let the free market work.
Once again this is the Leftist solution is to try and mandate that everyone be compassionate while we all become more miserable together. It is easy to appear compassionate when you are using someone else’s money. While I agree the state governments should provide a safety net for those in the direst circumstances, the majority of Americans would be better served by allowing the markets to thrive. As Andrew Wilkow is fond of saying of the Left on their thinking on healthcare, “For them it is either collectivism or nihilism.” For the Democrat there is no middle ground between the government must control it and oh my god we are all going to die. This type of binary thinking is not only untrue it is dangerous to our way of life. Each dollar we hand over to the federal government is one more piece of control that we allow the government and when we allowed them a foothold in healthcare we have created a monster that now feels justified to involve itself in our most personal decisions.
When Conservatives stand against government run healthcare it does not automatically make them Cheap, greedy, heartless or uncaring as the Cuomo characterization would imply. We are simply citizens that are tired of watching fruits of our hard work taken and transferred to someone else. We are tired of the government dictating the type of coverage and the essential health benefits that we must purchase. We are tired of watching the slow collapse of the quality of our care while costs spiral out of control. We are tired of witnessing the slow slide of our country into socialism. No you can go ahead and call me Cheap if you want too, but I know that my arguments are based on protecting my family, fighting for my rights and advocating for the free markets that built America.
In light of the healthcare bill I will make a couple of points to close. This bill was a failure from the get go because the consensus was not built within the Republican Party before it was unveiled. That is a failing of GOP house leadership. The Freedom Caucus shares some of this blame as they came out so hard against the bill from the beginning that there was zero chance that a compromise bill could be found in time to meet the self-imposed deadline. I am a realist. I am a big proponent of allowing the free market to self-regulate costs of healthcare. Obamacare is not going away overnight and the free market is going to take time to pick up the slack. This means that the Freedom Caucus is going to have to accept that some type of entitlement is going to be in place over some period of time during the transition. Ideologues you can stamp your feet all you want, but the truth is tossing 10 million people off of their health care even for a period of a week would be political suicide for Republicans who are in more moderate districts. Both sides are going to have to swallow some bitter medicine, but the cost of not getting it done are too high to stomach.