WHY can’t the GOP trust the market on health care?

The Republican Party’s platform at the national and state level talks oh so nice about appreciating the free market.  But a lot of that doesn’t mesh with the rhetoric coming out of DC Republican leaders’ mouths.  In about three weeks, they will control both ends of Capitol Hill AND The White House.  But we’re still getting the same kind of foot-dragging and whining we heard when Obama AND Harry Reid controlled two of those three.  *Repeal and Replace! No need to rush!*

Republicans are now seriously talking about waiting THREE YEARS to start seriously dismantling ObamaCare.   Why?

Part of it is general political mealy-mouthed wussiness.  It’s sooooooo much easier to give people stuff.  People love you when you do that.  But taking something away?  People get mad.  *Gotta keep the sheep content.*

Another part of it?  Minimize the controversy ahead of what looks like a nice upcoming election cycle for Republicans.  There are 33 seats up for grabs in the US Senate in 2018. Only EIGHT — Arizona, Wyoming, Texas, Utah, Tennessee, Mississippi, Nevada, and Nebraska — are held by Republican incumbents.  Of the remaining TWENTY-FIVE,   a total of SEVEN have Democrat incumbents in states that went for Trump or are otherwise very competitive for the Republican Party.  The GOP starts off 2017 with a 52-48 majority (Mike Pence breaking ties) in the Senate.  Holding all current seats and adding those seven would put the GOP at 59-41 with Pence adding a 60th vote.  Those nervous nellies don’t want to rock the boat.  They looooooove their committee chairmanships.  (Never mind that the GOP got where they are by pledging to trash ObamaCare way back in 2010.)

It appears newly-elected House Freedom Caucus chairman Mark Meadows is making some noise about these delaying tactics: 

[…] The Republican congressman who made his name as the instigator of John Boehner’s ouster last year was set to take the reins of the House Freedom Caucus on Monday night.

And first up on Rep. Mark Meadows’ to-do list: Torpedoing GOP leadership’s tentative plans to take as long as three years to replace Obamacare.

The proposal “will meet with major resistance from Freedom Caucus members,” the North Carolina Republican vowed in an interview, calling it “the first big fight I see coming for the Freedom Caucus.”

“It should be repealed and replaced, and all of that should be done in the 115th Congress” — the two-year period starting in January through 2018 — and “not left to a future Congress to deal with,” Meadows added. […] 

Hooray for calling them out on THREE YEARS.  But WHY does there need to be a “replacement”?    Anyone in the medical field will tell you the rise in red tape directly corresponds to the rise in cost and the decrease in efficiency in health care delivery.  Here’s a hospital bill from 1960 showing that having a baby at the hospital cost a whopping $230.  Today, THAT might cover the cost of a syringe. 

I am not that old.  But I can remember doctors actually coming by your house.  I can remember paying cash for doctor visits.  The deeper government has sunk its talons into this important sector of our economy, the more unaffordable and frustratingly inefficient it has become.

Kill ObamaCare.  Drop the interstate market barriers.  Let all the players who want to get in the game do so.  Sure, the government — the judicial branch specifically — needs to referee to ensure we aren’t getting taken for a ride by deceptive business practices and lives aren’t being put at risk.  But, increasing the number of providers of health care and health insurance will drive prices down and increase the quality of service.  It’s done so every time its been allowed in other sectors of the economy.

History has shown its nearly impossible to kill off an entitlement once the government kick-starts it.  Social security was meant to help old folks survive the Great Depression.  (And here it still is — bankrupting us.)  Medicaid and Medicare were instituted to help “end poverty in our lifetime.”  Here we are 52 years later — spending more money than ever on those two with an exponentially-

Kill ObamaCare. There will be some pain.  Kind of like weaning addicts off of crack.  But in the end, it’s going to be much better for everyone.

14 comments for “WHY can’t the GOP trust the market on health care?

  1. observant debate watcher
    December 29, 2016 at 5:06 pm

    Unless I am mistaken, I do not believe they are saying they will delay repealing Obamacare but only having a transition period for Obamacare participants and the insurance industry to move to a market based system. Which, frankly, is a very responsible way for the GOP to govern.

    Also, it appears that the GOP and the American people have decided that people need access to healthcare and that this should NOT be subjected to free market forces unless there are protections for people and provisions made for those unable to obtain insurance through the free market without assistance and protection such as pre-existing conditions, etc.

    If the free market was the sole determining factor, Medicare and Medicaid would not exist either. Somewhere along the line, the American people decided having such care is important to them.

    And I wager that MOST Republicans feel the same way.

  2. Toxhandler
    December 29, 2016 at 6:27 pm

    This is why the NCGOP base needs to repeal the district and state Chairs starting 90 days from now, and replace them with real conservatives who have no hesitation about holding a blowtorch under the feet of Burr, Tillis, and especially the entire NC congressional delegation for being the backsliding weasels that they are.

  3. JBP
    December 30, 2016 at 9:19 am

    Prior to the Affordable Care Act, “the market” actively shut out tens of millions of citizens from health care. We should trust that?

    • Protzman's Daddy
      December 30, 2016 at 9:49 am

      Keep dreaming. The market has had little to do with health care since at least 1965

      • JBP
        December 30, 2016 at 9:56 am

        The market has little to do with what Republicans will do with health care if they dismantle the ACA.

  4. hair-on-fire
    December 30, 2016 at 4:30 pm

    REPEAL OBAMACARE NOW.
    Replace it just as soon as there is a constitutional amendment updating Article 1 Section 8 to allow FedGov to do ANYTHING with “healthcare” or “medicine”. I’m not holding my breath.

  5. Doug
    December 31, 2016 at 12:14 pm

    The only thing I can think of to replace Obamacare is what the people wanted back in 2009. Pre-existing conditions should not disqualify you from gettig insurance, and you should be able to stay on a parent’s plan until 26. Everything else was not needed in O’care.

    • john steed
      January 2, 2017 at 8:15 am

      That pre-existing condition provision is what drives the cost of insurance so high under Obamacare. It distorts the actuarial tables. It is like saying you cannot discriminate against drunk drivers or those with lots of traffic tickets in auto insurance.

      For those born with such conditions, perhaps there is a justification for some type of welfare program. The rest of insurance purchasers should not have this expense dumped on us. For those who have such a condition arise during a period when they have made a conscious decision not to buy insurance, then I have no sympathy for them. They are hoist on their own petard, and neither the other insurance buyers nor the taxpayers should bail them out from their poor decision.

  6. Tom McCain
    January 1, 2017 at 5:35 pm

    When did SS become an entitlement? Don’t we pay into it? I think some of the Congressional perks are more of an entitlement. Just to the job we sent you to Congress to do.

    • john steed
      January 2, 2017 at 8:06 am

      Exactly. Americans are forced to pay into this very inefficient Social Security system. Honesty in government demands that we get as much of our money back as possible. If it were a privately run operation where the money coming in was invested properly, our return would be a lot more, so we are already being ripped off that way.

      Lumping this forced ripoff that we have to pay into with moocher programs like Medicaid, AFDC, and food stamps is dishonest and an insult. The moochers pay nothing into those programs. SS recipients pay more in than we should for what we get back.

  7. Profit Motif
    January 2, 2017 at 7:38 pm

    Every conservative is a free market capitalist, until he has a grandchild born with a congenital condition that an insurance company won’t cover. And unless the condition is disabling, there’s not medicaid coverage unless the family meets poverty guidelines.

    At that point, the “Conservative” believes the insurance companies should not be allowed to exclude pre-existing conditions. What’s the answer, then?

    • john steed
      January 3, 2017 at 7:20 am

      It is not the insurance companies who will be paying. The insurance company simply passes that actuarial risk on to the other policy holders by greatly raising their premiums to cover this cost. If they do not cover all actuarial risks, the insurance company will not be around to cover anyone because it will be bankrupt. The issue is whether the other policy holders should be forced by government to pay for this. By doing so, that makes insurance unaffordable for lots of other people.

    • JBP
      January 3, 2017 at 8:28 am

      Exactly!

    • john steed
      January 3, 2017 at 1:29 pm

      Just like it would be unfair for government to put the extra burden of drivers with DWI’s on the safe drivers, it is expensive and unfair for government to put the burden of paying a lot more to cover those with preexisting conditions on others with health insurance.

      I would suggest that the law should not allow companies to cancel existing policies for conditions that develop while the policy is in force. That is a risk they should assume.

      As to those which no insurance company wants to cover, and particularly those who are in that situation through no fault of their own, such as those born with the condition, perhaps government should subsidize insurance for them as a sort of welfare program. For those who assumed the risk by deliberately not buying health insurance, they should not get any assistance.

      Government subsidies to provide special insurance for those born with preexisting conditions would be a heck of a lot cheaper and less disruptive than the fruit basket turnover of our medical system as happened with Obamacare.

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