So the Republican plan to “repeal” and “replace” PlaceboCare 2.0 is out. Those of us who dreaded what would result once the words “and replace” were appended to the 7-year-old slogan were right. Allow me to quote Philip Klein:
Barring radical changes, Republicans will not be passing a bill that ushers in a new era of market-based healthcare. In reality, the GOP will either be passing legislation that rests on the same philosophical premise as Obamacare, or will pass nothing at all, and thus keep Obamacare itself in place….
But at the same time, the GOP bill preserves much of the regulatory structure of Obamacare; leaves the bias in favor of employer healthcare largely intact, replaces Obamacare’s subsidies with a different subsidy scheme, and still supports higher spending for Medicaid relative to what was the case before Obamacare.
Ultimately, it doesn’t do much to foster the development of a free market system. Under GOPcare, individuals would not be able to take insurance with them from job to job, because tax credits would not be available to people who have an offer of job-based insurance. They would not be able to purchase whatever plan they want, because the federal government will still be dictating what has to be in insurance policies, making insurance more expensive then it needs to be. If this bill passes, everybody would have to get their insurance either through government, their employer via tax subsidy, or be left to purchase government-designed health policies using federal subsidies.
Those are not the only elements of PlaceboCare 2.0 that are planned to survive the transition into PlaceboCare 3.0-Platinum Edition. Sen. Rand Paul and Rep. Mark Meadows point to a few other very troubling items that survived the platinum coating (formatting errors in the original fixed):
2. Leadership wants to keep the ObamaCare Cadillac tax but rename it a tax on the top 10% of people who have the best insurance.
3. Leadership wants to keep the individual mandate but instead of mandating a tax penalty to the government they mandate a penalty to the insurance company. (Can it possibly be Constitutional to mandate a penalty to a private insurance company?)
4. Leadership wants to keep $100 billion of the insurance company subsidies from ObamaCare but call them “reinsurance”. (Why? Because insurance companies love guaranteed issue as long as the taxpayer finances it!)
Should we have expected anything else from the party that got elected as President a fan of single-payer health care? Should we have expected anything else from the party that ran, in the Presidential election immediately after the adoption of PlaceboCare 2.0, the guy who created PlaceboCare 1.0? Should we have expected anything else from the party that got the federal government into the senior-citizen drug insurance game 7 years prior to PlaceboCare 2.0?
No wonder why I’ve gone radio silent. I got tired of being played and betrayed.