Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Pipes on ObamaCare

The December 30, 2008 Wall Street Journal published the following OpEd by Sally Pipes on President-elect Obama's health care proposals. Here is an excerpt:
...Now Mr. Daschle proposes nothing less than a giant HMO with a federal bureaucracy setting the benefit plan.

Mr. Daschle's model is Massachusetts. But Massachusetts's plan is an unfolding disaster and demonstrates how Mr. Daschle's private/public model is merely a stalking horse for government-dominated health care.

The headline claim is that the program has signed up 442,000 more people for health insurance. The reality is that 80,000 of these were simply put on Medicaid and 176,000 more on the taxpayer-subsidized plans. Costs have exploded, requiring additional tax hikes and the entire system is only possible due to sizable transfers from the federal government. The plans are so unaffordable that in 2007, 62,000 people were exempted from the individual mandate. So much for universal coverage.

The only way the Massachusetts plan will survive is with continued and increasing federal subsidies -- that is, tax revenue from the residents of other states. The only way Mr. Daschle's proposed plan would survive is with massive deficit spending -- that is, with taxpayer money from future Americans, many of whom are not yet born.
Once the national version of the Massachusetts plan collapses, this will pave the way for the even worse "single payer" system so beloved by the socialists. Hence, it's important to oppose the seemingly less-dangerous Massachusetts-for-all plan now, before it becomes the law of the land.