The “Benefits” Of ObamaCare

Almost everyone loses:

The U.S. Supreme Court held that the Congress exceeded its authority by “mandating” the purchase of health insurance, but it saved the law by construing the mandate as a tax on being uninsured. Being surprised that the uninsured would object to such a tax is like being surprised that yacht owners would object to George H.W. Bush’s luxury tax on yachts.

In short, what ObamaCare means to the uninsured who were not uninsurable is higher prices for a product they already were disinclined to buy, along with a punitive tax on not buying it. That seems more like a mugging than a benefit.

How many of the uninsured lack insurance because of pre-existing conditions? It’s hard to know, but it would appear the proportion is not high. A September Kaiser Family Foundation study reported that “the high cost of insurance is the main reason why people go without coverage.” It includes a pie chart with the following breakdown of reasons for lacking insurance: Insurance not affordable, 31.6%; lost job, 29.4%; other, 17.4%; no offer, 11.2%; aged out/left school, 8.8%; no need, 1.5%.

Arguably the problem of the uninsurable was a market failure that justified government intervention of some sort. If ObamaCare’s architects had approached the matter intelligently, they would have conducted research to identify the extent of that precise problem and carefully targeted their response. Government is quite capable of implementing even modest programs disastrously, but the hubris of demanding “comprehensive reform” gave us a law that had to be marketed via massive consumer fraud, and that harms almost everyone it affects.

The next time this clown circus approaches any policy issue intelligently will be the first.

Accepting The Settlements

…is the sine qua non of any serious peace agreement in Israel:

The Irish no longer care. They are neither Catholic nor nationalistic. The IRA thugs of 1970 came from four-child families. Today the Irish have fewer than two children on average. Let the matter simmer for another twenty years, and the Palestinian Arabs will look more like the Irish of 1996 than the Irish of 1970. At that point, the “narrative” will change, because no one will care about the old “narrative.”

In the meantime the Israeli settlers have built a garden and a workshop where before there were bare rocks, and thriving communities that are integral parts of Israeli society. It takes longer to get crosstown in Manhattan in traffic than it does to drive from the center of Tel Aviv to Ariel, the largest town in Samaria. This is yet another accomplishment of Jewish ingenuity and industriousness, and it is (or should be) an inspiring example to all who hope for a better life for the peoples of the Middle East. We will know that the Palestinians want peace when they admire rather than abhor this effort.

As science progresses, so also peace will come to that region, funeral by funeral.

[Update a while later]

Related: The daily lies about Israel.

Rewriting History

No, WaPo, Richard Nixon was not impeached:

Obama ends his fifth year in office with lower approval ratings than almost all other recent two-term presidents. At this point in 2005, for example, former president George W. Bush was at 47 percent positive, 52 percent negative. All other post-World War II presidents were at or above 50 percent at this point in their second terms, except Richard M. Nixon, whose fifth year ended in 1973 with an approval rating of 29 percent because of the Watergate scandal that later brought impeachment and his resignation.

The resignation was to avoid impeachment (and removal) — he resigned because a group of senators from his own party went to the White House and told him that he’d be convicted if impeached. Because Republicans have the integrity to remove their bad apples, while Democrats circle the wagons around theirs.

Anyway, I’ll bet the reporter who wrote that wasn’t even born at the time.

Biting Commentary about Infinity…and Beyond!