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It is hard to imagine a more stupid or more dangerous way of making decisions than by putting those decisions in the hands of people who pay no price for being wrong. – Thomas SowellObamacare’s Devastating Consequences: II
Health care reform has passed. The legislative process exposed the machinations of federal politics. Mis-using bribes, mendacity and obfuscation the power elite cobbled together enough votes for passage. Many Americans are outraged at the process.
Further Americans are skeptical of the product. Numerous citizens are repulsed by the mandates and regulations. Others are skeptical of the legislations efficacy, believing their medical care will decline and costs will rise. Reading the polls, Democrats are coached to say, “It does some good. Now, we need to fix it.”
Missing and totally ignored was the free exchange of ideas which is the essence and greatness of a free society. A free society excels because of the limitless exchange of ideas, goods and services. Competing ideas are open to being scrutinized by everyone, resulting in enhanced opinions, judgments and products. The Obama Administration snuffed the free exchange of ideas. The power elites – Obama, Pelosi, Reid and their subordinates - have imposed their will on America, which is impeeding good health care, stifling the economy and restricting personal freedom.
Were there health care alternatives oriented to individual freedom? Certainly. Here is one example:
Indiana state employees have personal health savings accounts. The Healthy Indiana Plan (HIP) is utilized by 70% of state employees with HIP state employees selecting and purchasing their pharmaceutical and medical needs. Moreover, HIP saves the employer and employee money and encourages good health practices and advances personal health care selections. Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels explains Indiana's plan in an interview with The Foundry of the Heritage Foundation:
… state coworkers have had the choice of Health Savings Accounts in lieu of traditional health care plans. The first year this option was made available, some 4 percent of us signed up for it. Six years later, more than 70 percent of our 30,000 state workers have opted for the personal account.
This trend has had a startlingly positive effect on costs for both employees and the state. State employees enrolled in the consumer-driven plan saved more than $8 million in 2010 compared to their coworkers in the old-fashioned preferred provider organization (PPO) alternative. Indiana will save at least $20 million in 2010 because of our high HSA enrollment.
It has also been the source of significant changes in behavior, as state workers with the HSA visit emergency rooms less frequently and are more likely to use generic drugs than co-workers with traditional health care. Hoosiers enrolled in HIP have experienced similar changes in behavior with generic drugs now accounting for 84 percent of all prescriptions used by enrollees.
ObamaCare will most likely destroy HIP and Health Savings Accounts. Worse, the political elite know ObamaCare will not reduce the cost of medicine in America.
Governor Daniels in analyzing the effect ObamaCare on his state found:
Of course, it’s a misnomer to even refer to this (ObamaCare) as “reform.” It doesn’t reform anything. Instead, it perpetuates and magnifies all the worst aspects of our current system: fee for service reimbursement, “free” to the purchaser consumption, and an irrationally expensive medical liability tort system. It’s a sure recipe for yet more overconsumption and overspending.
In a democracy, a politician does not have an ownership-interest in the state. There is no financial gain for wise policy decisions. Nor financial lose for bad decisions.
A politician’s rewards are immediate – power, prestige, and perquisites.
Obviously, Obama, Reid and Pelosi chose power and prestige over better health plans for Americans.
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