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Another fuckup from sketchy, kludgey ObamaCare

AP:

Some families could get priced out of health insurance due to what's being called a glitch in President Barack Obama's overhaul law. IRS regulations issued Wednesday failed to fix the problem as liberal backers of the president's plan had hoped.

As a result, some families that can't afford the employer coverage that they are offered on the job will not be able to get financial assistance from the government to buy private health insurance on their own. How many people will be affected is unclear.

Bruce Lesley, president of First Focus, an advocacy group for children, cited estimates that close to 500,000 children could remain uninsured because of the glitch. "The children's community is disappointed by the administration's decision to deny access to coverage for children based on a bogus definition of affordability," Lesley said in a statement.

The Obama administration says its hands were tied by the way Congress wrote the law.

The insurance companies (Wellpoint's Liz Fowler, out of Max Baucus's office) wrote the law. Obama was fully complicit in the process. Another exercise in blame-shifting.

Officials said the administration tried [aaw! They tried hard!] to mitigate the impact. Families that can't get coverage because of the glitch will not face a tax penalty for remaining uninsured, the IRS rules said.

So, those famlies are back to square one, as if ObamaCare never existed.

Shit like this happens because ObamaCare is a Frankenstein's monster that stitches together for-profit, private health insurance systems with not-for-profit social insurance systems based on arbitrary selection categories -- arbitrary from the standpoint of the idea that health care is a right -- and so there were always going to be cracks between between the systems that people would fall into. That's especially true when the for-profit systems have the incentive to cherry pick, and the social insurance programs are in the process of being gutted by having their coverage narrowed.

The real issue is how big the cracks are, and of course that won't be known until after the event -- yet another way that ObamaCare is a medical experiment performed on the American people without their informed consent.

NOTE Kludge.

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CMike's picture
Submitted by CMike on

is the same program, being introduced on the same time schedule, that we would have gotten under a McCain/Palin administration. The only difference would have been the roles assumed in the debate by today's Democratic party defenders of this private health insurance rescue plan and all the Republicans who have been squawking against it.

Rainbow Girl's picture
Submitted by Rainbow Girl on

It may not have started out as a feature, but Obama "My Hands are Tied" has just made it one. Ever heard of an amendment to legislation? Executive Orders?

His hands are full of private insurance and pharma. They're not tied.

Rainbow Girl's picture
Submitted by Rainbow Girl on

What the h*ll is that supposed to mean? If they could tinker with waiving the forced-purchase penalty (gee, wow, we're uninsured but we don't have to pay a penalty on top of that, phew!) there is no way in h*ll that Obama (yes, Obama, not "The Administration") could have figured out how to de-bug the law to ensure that MORE, not FEWER, people get coverage under ObamaCase.

Il nous prend vraiment pour des cons, ce mec.

Submitted by [Please enter a... (not verified) on

This is turning into the ultimate clusterf*ck. Like New Coke amplified a thousand-fold. This may really be the worst piece of legislation Congress has ever passed, possibly the worst in world history. Obama may very well go down as the most incompetent president ever. Health insurance premiums are going way up, and the number of uninsured could very well increase under this disaster. The Democrats are going to be such toast in the next election.

twig's picture
Submitted by twig on

if the insurance companies keep raising their rates. A few weeks ago, I wrote about Blue Shield raising rates for Mr. twig because he was moving into a different age bracket. Now they're raising them another 11% -- because they can, I guess. There really wasn't much of an explanation.

The strange thing is that Blue Shield claims to be a not-for-profit organization, even though they pay their top executives millions of dollars each year. The not-for-profit claim has to be a scam of some sort, but I don't know enough about law or accounting to figure it out.

Anthony_JKenn's picture
Submitted by Anthony_JKenn on

Actually, most of the articles and HuffPost comments cited are from right-wing/TeaPublican sources who not only oppose the ACA, but ANY form of government aid for healthcare....and most of the comments are of the "See, we told you so!! Government should get out and let insurance companies screw people freely.....and it's just good old Obama/Democrat 'socialism'!!" variety.

I'm sure that the "glitch" was merely just another compromise put in by the corpracrats to attempt to assauge the "concerns" of coporations that they not be put in the "burden" of paying more for healthcare for their employees. Of course, that's not going to prevent them from cutting employees' hours or firing them just to get out of that "burden" anyway, and then blaming "ObamaCare" for the resulting firestorm.

This is the very point of how "compromise" of the sort that loyalist "pragmatist" Democrats are always pushing will always come back to blow up in liberals' faces. And, provide fresh fuel for the TeaPubs to scream about "'Ya see?? WE TOLD 'YA SO!!! Government can do NOTHING RIGHT...we should just go back to "personal responsibility" and let the poor just starve...and let the "private sector" and God sort it all out!!"

There is no subsitute for standing your ground for basic principles...and those of us who advocated single payer from the very beginning were warning Democrats that "RomneyObamaCare" would blow up in their faces. Maybe when the celebration wears off and the true face of the ACA is revealed in 2014, and the Dems reap the whirlwind of the electorate betrayed, then perhaps the lesson will be learned.

Submitted by lambert on

.... fun house mirror. But there are times when they do reason from premises (even if I don't agree with them). I got one local to agree that single payer was a good thing for "small government" to do (and we both agreed on getting rid of the empire).

Anthony_JKenn's picture
Submitted by Anthony_JKenn on

Oh...and there is this new "glitch"..except that this one is courtesy of the very US Supreme Court ruling that "liberated" the ACA:

http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/2013/01/25/supreme-court-decision-on-ob...

To summarize....if a state decides to "opt out" of the Medicaid expansion, it could create the infamous "donut hole" where a family too "wealthy" to qualify for Medicaid but not "wealthy" enough to qualify for the subsidies that would offset the higher premiums would be priced out of healthcare altogether.

However....poor legal immigrants who have been in the country for 5 years or less are exempted from the "donut hole" exemption; they would still be able to qualify for the health insurance subsidies even if they don't qualify for Medicaid.

I'm sure that you can see what's coming down the pike, can you?? Imagine Steve "PsychoNazi" King campaigning for the Iowa Senate, screaming about how "ObamaCare" is just "welfare for illegals" while "real Americans" are paying more. Or, for that matter, any TeaPublican opposed to the very idea of universal public health care exploiting these "glitches" to rant about how this proves why government should just get the hell out of the way and allow Big Insura and Big Pharma to screw sick people and let God and debt slavery sort out the rest.

And you wonder how Democrats lose elections after they win them? And, how the country keeps getting lurched further and further to the Right?

Turlock