Quote of the Day:
“Only in America!” –Don King
TB has watched with great amusement the fallout from Chief Justice Roberts stunning opinion upholding the Affordable Care Act. Here is my take:
An unpopular act filled with mostly popular provisions (preexisting care exclusion ended, lifetime coverage limits removed, senior drug cost relief, children on parents’ policy until 26, tax breaks for small businesses covering employees, etc) and one particularly hated provision (the mandate/fine mechanism), and a whole bunch of yet to be implemented or understood sections (the marketplace) will not be overturned by the Courts.
People who call themselves conservative and vote Republican are irate. They have pledged to vote for Mitt Romney, who has taken a solemn vow to repeal the Act, even though when he was Governor of Massachusetts he invented the most unpopular part of the bill–the mandate–which serves mostly to offset the costs to insurance companies for the popular consumer friendly provisions by creating for them an additional source of profit.
People who call themselves liberal or progressive and vote Democrat are exultant. They are thrilled that President Obama, who campaigned in 2008 on his support for universal health care and who supported a public option for insurance coverage, which most observers believe would lead to the speedy demise of the oligarchy of health insurance companies, got a much needed political victory in an important election year, even though it was in furtherance of a law inspired by his opponent which undermines their ultimate goal.
Me? I like the popular parts. I don’t like the unpopular part. I think it would be a lot simpler if we just joined the 21st century and the rest of the civilized world by adopting a universal health care system. That’s the rational part of me anyway. Sadly, I’m not immune to the ingrained cultural imperative of all Americans to simply keep score. I’m happy the Act was upheld largely because my side “won.” Whether something works or not does not matter. It is all about who gets the point.