17 August 2009

My Friend Branden B. On President Obama's New York Times Op-Ed

The main contributors to this blog are yours truly (lybberty) and my brother, matt. From time to time, I post submissions from guest contributors whose principles align with the principles of OL&L.

This is one of those times.

Longtime friend & friend of the blog, Branden B., weighs in with some insightful analysis of President Obama's health care op-ed which ran in Sunday's New York Times. I recommend it for your review.
I read Obama's editorial this morning on health care in the NY Times. A few things jumped out at me because they seemed incredible. I don't completely understand the issue nor do I pretend to; however, I did learn a thing or two in school along with everyone else who took Econ 110 and they could shoot holes through his argument as easily as I could.

First, it's obvious that the President is putting the majority of his effort into demonizing insurance companies. For those who have read Atlas Shrugged, it is phenomenal how similar his language is to the looters in Rand's book. I am not saying that insurance companies are perfect entities or that Rand's philosophy is even mostly correct. It just blew me away that he was lifting their language so exactly:
...in unwarranted subsidies to insurance companies that do nothing to improve care and everything to improve their profits.

...we’ll be able to ensure that more tax dollars go directly to caring for seniors instead of enriching insurance companies.

...reform will provide every American with some basic consumer protections that will finally hold insurance companies accountable.

...A 2007 national survey actually shows that insurance companies discriminated against more than 12 million Americans
Secondly, take a few moments and read the following paragraph, think for a bit, and then tell me why this will not work.
We will put an end to these practices. Our reform will prohibit insurance companies from denying coverage because of your medical history. Nor will they be allowed to drop your coverage if you get sick. They will not be able to water down your coverage when you need it most. They will no longer be able to place some arbitrary cap on the amount of coverage you can receive in a given year or in a lifetime. And we will place a limit on how much you can be charged for out-of-pocket expenses.
Again, I understand that there are real people affected by the problems he outlined above. That said, what does he think is going to happen to the insurance premiums for everyone (including those that are sick) if companies are required to turn a blind eye to just about everything they use now in determine (insurance) premiums? He doesn't even acknowledge that your premiums are going to at least double and possibly triple or quadruple. At that point, the government will then step in and say that insurance companies can't raise premiums (as it was in Atlas). Insurance companies will then go bankrupt and the government will conveniently step in with their fixed plan, paid for with your tax dollars.

Finally, what does this last sentence mean?
If you have health insurance, we will make sure that no insurance company or government bureaucrat gets between you and the care you need.
The first "we" is Obama, a government bureaucrat. We could rewrite that to say:
If you have health insurance, we [government bureaucrats] will make sure that no insurance company or government bureaucrat gets between you and the care you need.
I don't normally do these sorts of rants but I could not believe that the President peddled these fallacies so blatantly in the morning newspaper.
[ed. note: Branden, this is what you get for reading the NYT Op-Ed page.]

If you have tips, questions, comments or suggestions, email me at lybberty@gmail.com.