The politics and financial considerations of the Democratic health care reform proposals have become almost mind-numbing, and the people may be right to feel overwrought by the onslaught of plans, amendments, CBO calculation, public options, mandates, triggers, opt-ins and opt-outs, and new taxes in trying to understand what is being handed them. In situations like this it's often helpful to have a proponent of the effort provide a certain clarity, as the Wall Street Journal points out today.
Mr. Cassidy is more honest than the politicians whose dishonesty he supports. "The U.S. government is making a costly and open-ended commitment," he writes. "Let's not pretend that it isn't a big deal, or that it will be self-financing, or that it will work out exactly as planned. It won't. What is really unfolding, I suspect, is the scenario that many conservatives feared. The Obama Administration . . . is creating a new entitlement program, which, once established, will be virtually impossible to rescind."
Why are they doing it? Because, according to Mr. Cassidy, ObamaCare serves the twin goals of "making the United States a more equitable country" and furthering the Democrats' "political calculus." In other words, the purpose is to further redistribute income by putting health care further under government control, and in the process making the middle class more dependent on government. As the party of government, Democrats will benefit over the long run.
John Cassidy writes for New Yorker magazine, and his article can be read here. Here we find some other gems, such as this:
The future cost savings that the Administration and its congressional allies are promising to deliver are based on wishful thinking and sleight of hand. Over time, the reform, as proposed, would almost certainly add substantially to the budget deficit, thereby worsening the long-term fiscal crisis that the country faces.
The Pelosi bill, in particular, wouldn’t do much, if anything, to address the overall escalation in health-care costs...
And about the IMAC, the Independent Medical Advisory Council that would be tasked with restraining costs, he writes:
“By removing some of the political pressure around such reforms,” Romer said in the same speech, “the IMAC would make it easier for improvements to be made year after year.” This statement can only be described as wishful thinking. I hope it will be proved right, but Washington is replete with now-defunct independent bodies and commissions that toiled dutifully, did good work, and made little difference.
Read both, then tell me that the proponents have been completely honest. It doesn't seem that the reform will magically expand coverage to an eighth of the populace while lowering costs and reducing paperwork, all without restricting the freedom of Americans.