Beware of  "free" stuff

Beware of “free” stuff

Seems like the more ObamaCare(tm) is implemented, the less the American people like it. First of all, a liberal, Ivy League university has sent its students into an uproar. They want to #FightTheFee that they’ll be charged for not buying the university’s health insurance. Welcome to the real word of socialism! Lesson 1: You won’t like it when it’s applied to you.

And on a broader scale, the American people in general are souring on the idea. A majority oppose the law now, and I wonder how many of them just took Nancy Pelosi’s word for it when she said that they’d have to pass the law to find out what’s in it. The blue-sky promises have turned to thunderclouds. Maybe folks should understand a law before they support it.

Mentioned links:

Cornell students erupt over health care fee

As Public Sours, ObamaCare Faces An Uncertain Future

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Show transcript

Cornell University is an Ivy League school in the very liberal enclave of Ithaca, NY. Change comes slowly to the little town, centrally isolated in the Finger Lakes region of upstate New York. You’d think that would describe a conservative enclave, but no. The town of Ithaca is as reliably liberal as they are set in their ways, wishing to preserve their town as it is for all time. But economic pressures have pushed to the fore in recent decades, and the CAVE people, as they are affectionately called (Citizens Against Virtually Everything), have been overcome to bring Ithaca economic development.

I say that to say this. Politically, Ithaca is left-leaning, to the point of falling over into Cayuga Lake. Barack Obama and his policies have loads of support there. But, as I mentioned a few episodes back regarding Harvard University, that support tends to dissolve when they are affected personally by those policies. Students are going to be charged a fee for not buying health insurance from the college. It’s slightly different than the ObamaCare penalty, but only slightly. The idea that you are going to have to pay for not buying something is all of a sudden a bad thing, when they have to do it.

The $350 “health fee” for opting out of the school’s insurance plan was announced in a memo school President David Skorton posted on Cornell’s website last week, according to higher education blog The College Fix. But it is just setting in with the student body, and many attending the Ithaca, N.Y., school are not pleased. Under the Affordable Care Act, students must have insurance, but making those already covered pay an extra fee to skip the school’s plan is not sitting well.

The announcement sent students into a fervor, leading to a series of rallies on campus and hashtag activism, with #FightTheFee trending on the social media website.

Hey, the fee is for the good of society – the Cornell society – and shouldn’t those who can afford their own insurance also subsidize the services that all students can take advantage of? Nope, not according to the students, who probably aren’t personally paying for the insurance they do have, but most likely voted for Obama in droves.

First Harvard professors, now Cornell students; liberal policies are not sitting well in liberal academia. They vote to socialize more and more of our country, but do not want it for themselves. They keep saying, and apparently believing, that this will bring down costs. It doesn’t, but they continue to believe it will the next time. Instead our debt keeps getting higher and higher, and the liberal policy wonks merrily ignore the consequences. They are, if nothing, eternal optimists, but that optimism is too expensive for the rest of us.

As it turns out, however, the rest of America is also souring on ObamaCare. Nancy Pelosi’s infamous pronouncement that they had to pass the bill to find out what was in it has turned out to be bad advice for anyone; lawmaker and citizen alike. Here’s just a hint for the future; understand what you’re doing before you pass a bill. Heck, understand what you’re doing before you run for Congress.

And now that we know what’s in the bill, turns out we don’t like it. According to a Gallup poll, public approval of ObamaCare dropped to a record low of 37% at the end of 2014. The latest RealClearPolitics average of polls shows that 51% of Americans oppose the law. I have to wonder what percentage of folks were all for it, sight unseen, while it was working its way through Congress. Looks like a case of buyer’s remorse, like getting a snazzy car and then the “snaz” wears off after a little while. Unfortunately, it appears that some people do more research into a car they’re going to buy than into something their Congressman is going to spend trillions of their money on.

It hasn’t been cheaper, and for more people, it hasn’t been simpler, either. Forty-six percent of Americans now describe health costs as a “hardship,” up from 36% in 2013. Businesses are finding it difficult, too. You know, those entities that provide jobs and, in most cases, insurance? Forty-two percent of small businesses report that they’ve experienced double-digit increases in the cost of health care in the past year. As a result, 37% have delayed investment; 26% have frozen or cut wages. You might say that many businesses were faced with double-digit increases before ObamaCare, and you’d be right. But the promised cost savings just have not materialized.

We’ve been sold a bill of goods, but we couldn’t, or wouldn’t, read the bill until we’d bought it. President Pied Piper had so many people enchanted over the promises of free stuff or cost savings, but those who were paying attention knew that it was just a pipe dream. And now the President is playing the same tune, promising “free” community college. Have we learned our lesson, or are we going to sing the same old song?

Filed under: Economics & TaxesGovernmentHealth CareSocialism