Friday, March 18, 2011

I Spoke Too Soon: President Obama Puts Candle on !st Birthday Cake of Health Reform Law

Yesterday, I wrote Republicans were celebrating the failures of Obamacare on its first birthday while Democrats were remaining silent.

That’s too bad and premature. I apologize. I pride myself on being even-minded about health reform. But sometimes my skepticism overcomes my objectivity, and my bias shows through. As the late E.B. White, America’s premier essayist, observed, “A writer's style reveals something of his spirit, his habits, his capacities, his bias.... It is the Self escaping into the open.”

As it turns out, the Obama administration has its strategy to celebrate the event. It consists of having a half-dozen cabinet members fanning out around the country praising the positive accomplishments of the law. These accomplishments include tax credits for small businesses, rebates for seniors who fall in the Donut Hole due to high prescription drug costs, coverage of young adults up to 26 under their parents’ health plans, and an attack on health plans as the main culprits for rising premiums.

Also, after the fanfare over the 1st anniversary blows over, and the 1st candle has been blown out, Democrats are relying on:

• $105 billion they cleverly set aside to automatically fund implementation to blunt Republican efforts to defund the bill;

• putting out a final version of the Accountable Care Organization provision forcing hospitals and doctors to collaborate by paying them on the basis of fixed budgets for Medicare populations.

Now is not the time to focus on the virtues or faults of Obamacare. Let’s face it. President Obama has bigger issues on his plate with disasters in Japan and Libya. Dealing with health reform can wait for another day, Now is a time for good sense, candor, civility, and support on bigger international issues rather than on the string of unforeseen and unfortunate consequences of health reform.

1 comment: said...

Quite effective material, thank you for the article.