Costs? What costs?

Costs? What costs?

So, how’s that fantastic government program, ObamaCare, doing? You know, that program that would let you keep your doctor or your plan if you liked it, or reduce your costs by $2,500 dollars per year? The program that, overall, would save us all money? Well, the Washington  Post has  an update, and it seems that the “Affordable” Care Act isn’t very affordable, even for the government that created it. In fact, it’s having to use a 1950s-era law to come up with the money to pay insurers.

And someone you know was trashing ObamaCare recently. See who you can figure out who it was in Name That Quote!

Mentioned links:

Obama administration may use obscure fund to pay billions to ACA insurers

Bill Clinton bashes Obamacare as ‘crazy system’ on campaign trail

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Show transcript

So, how’s that fantastic government program, ObamaCare, doing? You know, that program that would let you keep your doctor or your plan if you liked it, or reduce your costs by $2,500 dollars per year? The program that, overall, would save us all money? Well, the Washington  Post has  an update.

The Obama administration is maneuvering to pay health insurers billions of dollars the government owes under the Affordable Care Act, through a move that could circumvent Congress and help shore up the president’s signature legislative achievement before he leaves office.

Justice Department officials have privately told several health plans suing over the unpaid money that they are eager to negotiate a broad settlement, which could end up offering payments to about 175 health plans selling coverage on ACA marketplaces, according to insurance executives and lawyers familiar with the talks.

The payments most likely would draw from an obscure Treasury Department fund intended to cover federal legal claims, the executives and lawyers said. This approach would get around a recent congressional ban on the use of Health and Human Services money to pay the insurers.

So, it’s dealing with the “unexpected” costs by scooting around the law and finding loopholes. That’s very similar to how Democrats got the law passed in the first place, by denying it was a tax, but then classifying it as a tax so that they could pass it with a lower threshold of votes, locking out Republicans completely. At least they’re being consistent! Because  when Donald Trump uses tax “loopholes” to pay as little as he can (just like you and I do), that’s “evil”. But when the government does it, it’s somehow OK.

So then, why do they have to do this? The reason is one that conservatives predicted long before the law was ever snuck through…I mean, passed.

The start of negotiations came amid an exodus of health plans from the insurance exchanges that are at the heart of the law. More than 10 million Americans have gained coverage through the marketplaces since they opened in 2014.

But many insurers are losing money on their new customers, who tend to be relatively sick and expensive to treat. As a result, some smaller plans have been driven out of business and a few major ones are defecting from exchanges for the coming year.

Of those 10 million, the article doesn’t say how many had the rug pulled out from under them once they thought that they were safe because the government said they were safe. Insurance providers and co-ops – some rather large – have had to pull out of the exchanges because you can’t pay your employees with government promises. And now, as the article notes later on, they’re having to tap into a Treasury fund created in the 1950s to get the cash to pay up on those promises.

We’re over $18 trillion in debt, and as I’ve noted on a previous episode, that’s more money than all the cash, property, and investments of all the people and corporations in the entire country. And now this. The lesson that we should learn is one that we should have learned generations ago; never, ever believe that a new government program will save money. It. Will. Not. The only way to cut government debt is to cut government spending. And the only way to cut government spending is to…cut government spending. I know, it sounds like a crazy idea, but it just might work.

It’s that time once again for you to put on your thinking cap, listen to what someone said, and Name That Quote! That’s the game where you try to figure out who said it, and where I make it as difficult as possible to do that. Here’s the quote:

“You’ve got this crazy system where all of a sudden 25 million more people have health care and then the people are out there busting it, sometimes 60 hours a week, wind up with their premiums doubled and their coverage cut in half. It’s the craziest thing in the world…The people that are getting killed in this deal are small businesspeople and individuals who make just a little too much to get any of these subsidies.”

Well that certainly sounds like Donald Trump on the campaign trail, but that would be too easy. Gary Johnson? Nope. One of Trump’s surrogates, perhaps; maybe Newt Gingrich? Some opinion guy like Sean Hannity or Rush Limbaugh? Nah, that would be even easier.

No, but in fact, this statement was made on the campaign trail, not by Hillary Clinton, but actually by one of her surrogates; her husband, Bill Clinton!

Yup, good ol’ Bill was out there trashing ObamaCare like he was some right-wing extremist who hated the poor. But here’s the question; why? Why speak ill of a law that, by all accounts, Democrats love? Well, we can go back to a prediction that, again, conservatives made long before the law was ever snuck…er, passed, which was that it was a stepping stone to a single-payer system. In fact, some went as far to say that it was designed to fail so that the people would be manipulated into then demanding a fix in the form of single-payer. But while most Democrats proclaim ObamaCare as having “worked”, here’s Bill Clinton trying to convince them that it’s “crazy”.

Well, conservatives already knew that.

Here’s question for you; where should we take the money from to pay for ObamaCare? How about from our United Nations dues, or perhaps from Obama’s paycheck? Even better, from the expense accounts from the Democratic Congressmen that voted for it. Send me your ideas and I’ll list them here.

Filed under: Economics & TaxesGovernmentHealth Care