Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Sixteen Planks in GOP Alternative to ObamaCare

You load sixteen tons and what do you get,

Another day older and deeper in debt.

Saint Peter, don’t call me because I can’t go.

I owe my soul to the company store.

Sixteen Tons, Lyrics to Sixteen Tons by Tennessee Ernie Ford

An article on the Internet in form of numbered or bullet point lists, generally with a cardinal number in title.


I have a new word in my vocabulary: “Listicle.”

A listicle is a creature of the Internet. A listicle combines the words “list”and ”article”. A Listicle is designed for short articles on the Internet for readers with short attention spans and no time to share.

Enough preamble.

Here is a listicle by Bob Lawzewski, a well-known and respected health insurance analyst on his take on the Republican alternative to ObamaCare should the Supreme Court declare federal subsidies illegal .

After listing these 16 components of the Republican repeal and replacement plan, Lawzewski concludes:

“And, therein lies the Republican challenge––convincing people that their complex health insurance reform ideas provide people with more health insurance security than the problematic and complex Obamacare plan does. Take it or leave it––ours or theirs.”

“Again, I think Republicans would have been far better off taking a big gulp and accepting ObamaCare as the baseline in health insurance public policy and then use many of their ideas to tell the American people how they could make it work a lot better.”

“After all, isn’t that what most people really want?”

Here is Laszewski's list of the 16 components of the Republican alternative plan.

1. Full repeal and replacement of ObamaCare.

2. No individual mandate to buy health insurance or an employer to offer coverage.

3. Return to pre-existing condition limits.

4. Default enrollment.

5. High risk pools for uninsured.

6. Affordable insurance policies.

7. Tax credits to buy coverage.

8. Tax credits only up to 300% of poverty.

9. Flat amounts tax credits by age.

10. No more ObamaCare state and federal health exchanges.

11. No limits on kind of insurance policies that could be offered.

12. Capping the tax credits of employer provided health insurance.

13. Moving towards defined contribution of health insurance.

14. Medical malpractice reform.

15. Repeal Medicaid expansion.

16. Empower poorer consumers by giving them mainstream health plans.

Presumably this plan would lighten the growing national debt, which will load $20 trillion tons of debt on future generations by the time Obama leaves office. By then we will owe our souls to the government store.

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