Obama boosters think the correct answer to the threshold question is "really dumb" or at least gullible and naïve. I disagree.
For the young, much of ObamaCare funding is about fooling and/or forcing the youngsters into subsidizing the oldsters by paying more for health care than they would otherwise have to pay for their own care.
In turn that means the old can pay less, and ObamaCare will therefore be "less unaffordable" to We the People as a whole. It's an intended ripoff, pure and simple. But will it play in Peoria? I doubt it very much, but we'll soon see.
To repeat, how dumb (or you can substitute for dumb either or both of the words gullible or naïve if you prefer) are the young is one big question that will be answered by ObamaCare in the coming months and years.
The Young Won't Buy ObamaCare is subtitled 'It makes scant financial sense for them to subsidize others' financial care:'
"Media outlets lately have emphasized the challenge of enticing healthy young adults to sign up for ObamaCare, "exactly the type of person insurance plans, states and the federal government are counting on to make health reform work," as the L.A. Times put it. These pieces are useful as far as they go, but miss a key point that Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito managed to convey in many fewer words during last year's Supreme Court argument on ObamaCare.
Mr. Alito pointed out that young, healthy adults today spend an average of $854 a year on health care. ObamaCare would require them to buy insurance policies expected to cost roughly $5,800. The law, then, isn't just asking them to pay for "the services that they are going to consume," he continued. "The mandate is forcing these people to provide a huge subsidy to the insurance companies . . . to subsidize services that will be received by somebody else."
Since he puts it that way, why would they sign up for ObamaCare, especially since the alleged penalties will be negligible and likely unenforced? . . .
For 30 years, journalists have been "investigating" hospital pricing, which is neither competitive nor closely related to cost, invariably throwing up their hands and saying government must fix matters. Yet any reasoned analysis shows that government policy is why we have such a byzantine payment system in the first place, in which an ever-inflating health-care bill is allocated among "payer" groups via opaque political bargaining.
Why isn't the same mess seen in other realms of the economy? In the automobile market, dealers publish prices on their websites and in ads that are always lower than the sticker prices. Why?
Independent websites like Edmunds.com, AutoTrader.com and Kelley Blue Book publish detailed pricing information for consumers and do so for free. Why?
The answer is obvious. Consumers want such information and businesses see opportunity in providing it, even for free, in order to attract eyeballs for advertising.
Such information doesn't exist in health care because consumers don't demand it, because somebody else is almost always paying for our health care. Those of us who aren't subsidized directly by Medicaid, Medicare and the Veterans Administration are subsidized through the tax code to channel all our aches and pains through a third-party payment mill, disguised as employer-provided "insurance.". . .
Medicare is portrayed as getting the best deal from the system because Medicare pays less per service. But remember how the system works. Who's to say Medicare doesn't pay less per procedure because it's being billed for many more procedures, because that's how providers are allowed to maximize their revenues from the payer known as Medicare?
In fact, plenty of evidence suggests this is exactly how Medicare operates. And Congress understands as much, hence the 25% cut in physician reimbursements it keeps threatening to impose is informed partly by expectations that physicians could maintain their incomes by charging for more services."
In a similar vein, ObamaCare Trail of Tears is subtitled 'Auditors say HHS isn't close to being ready to launch in October:'
"Set aside the IRS or the National Security Agency—the most secretive part of the government is the Health and Human Services Department and the black box that is implementation of the Affordable Care Act. For years HHS has stonewalled the congressional oversight committees about its progress, and now we're starting to learn why. . . .
The entitlement's "exchanges," or subsidized insurance bureaucracies, are supposed to open in October, but HHS will run 34 federal versions in whole or part as Governors continue their ObamaCare resistance. The GAO attempted to track "key activities" necessary to set up exchanges and identified "more than 100." But the auditors can't give a precise number because "the nature of the activities that [HHS] and the states will conduct has not been finalized and may continue to evolve.". . .
But ObamaCare supporters should also have night sweats about the haywire launch that the GAO suggests is in the offing. The entire Rube Goldberg apparatus depends on young, healthy people signing up to cross-subsidize more expensive patients and prevent health plans from going into a death spiral in which premiums don't cover claims.
Yet the June Kaiser Family Foundation health tracking poll—which also found that public support for ObamaCare hit a new post-passage low of 35%—reports that nearly one of three Americans between the ages of 18 and 30 do not believe that insurance "is worth the money it costs." And persuading young, healthy people to sign up for coverage requires them to act against their own economic interest, since they can always enroll later when they need it as a result of ObamaCare's mandates.
Good luck getting millennials to sign up when plans aren't merely more expensive but when the exchanges malfunction, or doctors don't accept exchange coverage because someone checked the wrong box, or any number of myriad administrative problems. HHS is promising an iPhone and app store, and what it is about to deliver is a rotary dial and switchboard that doesn't work."
Government control always leads to higher cost and lower quality.
In the case of ObamaCare, it will be much higher cost and much lower quality, all cloaked in secrecy.
It's part of the elitist government knows best monopolistic and socialistic way.
So will the young still opt to buy ObamaCare policies? Only if they're dumb, uninformed or fearful of the potential legal consequences of not doing so.
Politics sucks and big government knows best elitism does, too.
My guess is that the ObamaCare implementation and costs will be a real doozy of a failure in every conceivable way.
And that when the dust has finally settled, whenever that may be, the truth will set us free.
At least that's the fundamental idea behind a fiscally responsible and transparent self governing free society of equals.
That's my take.