The House should defund Obamacare Reply

By Tom Quiner

I got the bad news this week. My healthcare premiums are going up $720 the next twelve months.

My wife and I are self-employed and own a high-deductible health savings account (HSA). This type of plan make sense in many respects. We essentially pay the first $5000 of our medical costs.  So we have incentive to shop for medical services and to be sensible in how we spend our money. Prior to Obamacare, HSAs allowed us to pay the first $5000 with pre-tax dollars. Post Obamacare, that amount has been reduced to $2500.

Obamacare is driving insurance companies out of the business, so consumers have fewer choices when it comes to shopping for good plans.

Contrast this with car insurance that has radically less government intrusion in their marketplace. Between Geico, Progressive, State Farm, and others, car insurance ads are on the air constantly. Consumers enjoy a ton of choices and, as a result, rates have remained competitive and stable.

When’s the last time you saw a health insurance company advertising their competitive rates?

Unlike with car insurance, the government does not allow health insurance companies to market their services across state lines. Even more, state governments pile on mandates that force consumers to buy coverage they may not want.

So despite everything Mr. Obama has said, we have less choice and higher costs. I’m taking a real hit with the reduction in how much I can pay in pre-tax dollars on top of the increase in my premiums.

If we eliminated every health insurance mandate and allowed companies to market across state lines, we’d see rates begin to stabilize and even drop.

Absent that, I like former Speaker Newt Gingrich’s idea. The House should defund Obamacare.

You know, if the President doesn’t want to defend a law he doesn’t like (the Defense of Marriage Act), I think the House should follow his lead and close the purse strings on a law they don’t like: Obamacare.

In the meantime, I’m one of the multitude who is taking a financial hit because of Obamacare and government intrusion in the market place.

Is preventative healthcare cost-effective? Reply

By Tom Quiner

According to Rutgers economist, Louise Russell, “prevention usually adds to medical spending.”

She’s studied it. She wrote about it in the Journal of Health Affairs in 2009. She says that :

Four out of five preventive options “add more to medical costs than they save.”

The President doesn’t care about the cost, as he told us last year:

“insurance companies [under Obamacare] will be required to cover, with no extra charge, routine checkups and preventive care, like mammograms and colonoscopies, because there’s no reason we shouldn’t be catching diseases like breast cancer and colon cancer before they get worse. That makes sense, it saves money, and it saves lives.”

I applaud prevention, but someone has to pay for it. Who? The poor?  Of course not. The middle class? Obama said no in a presidential debate, that he opposes anything…

“that is primarily funded through taxing middle-class families.”

But why shouldn’t folks pay for at least a portion of their own prevention? Isn’t that kind of important to keep medical costs from spiraling even more out of control? If you’ve got a stake in paying the tab, won’t you be a little more accountable?

One of the many flaws of Obamacare is the mandate on insurance companies that they provide  45 preventative care services at zero cost to patients. Sounds good on paper. But eventually you’re going to have to pay. You’ll feel the pinch when healthcare gets rationed and waits for care get longer.

The 19th century French economist put it this way:

“Government is the great fiction through which everybody endeavors to live at the expense of everybody else.”

It won’t work, and people are going to get hurt.


Do you want Kathleen Sebelius to tell your dentist how to clean your teeth? 3

I just got back from the dentist where I had my teeth cleaned. Section 4102 of Obamacare is charged with setting standards for “tooth-level surveillance.” This is but one of 1968 new powers granted to government bureaucrats. My dentist has done just fine without Obamacare telling him how to do it. Butt out, Mr. President and Ms. Sebelius. More…

Why high unemployment is here to stay Reply

By Tom Quiner

In a typical economic recovery, the economy starts growing and eventually job creation follows suit.

I’m not overly optimistic about the likelihood of a robust surge in job creation because of Obamacare.

Let’s say you’re a small business owner with 47 employees. Obamacare creates a disincentive to add new employees, because once you hit 50 employees, you must provide health insurance or face stiff fines.

In other words, Obamacare increases the cost (and risk) of expansion.

The President is now telling health insurance companies how much profit they can earn, something marketplaces used to do with the oversight of state insurance commissioners. So what’s wrong with that? For one, it’s none of the federal government’s business. For another, insurance companies will be forced to cut benefits and even abandon unprofitable states. Consumers will have fewer choices, which leads to higher costs for employers to insure their employees.

What a job killer!

Obamacare has created tremendous uncertainty with employers. Uncertainty is the ultimate kiss of death for job growth.

Obamacare is poison to anyone looking for a job or fearful of losing their job.