Wednesday, August 22, 2012

When your only answer is more government, every problem looks like a nail

Hit & Run: "Big Government ratchet turns another click"
What’s more, federal health care costs will consume a larger and larger share of the federal budget—and crowd out all other government functions in the process. If current trends continue, then by 2025 just four budget categories—Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, and interest on the debt—will gobble up every last federal dollar.
This, naturally, has alarmed many progressives. But don’t worry—as always, they have a plan.
According to The Washington Post's Ruth Marcus, “23 responsible Democrats—some of the left’s leading thinkers in the health-care field—have just come up with a set of answers.” And like a boozer who tries to drink himself sober, their answer is...wait for it...more government.
Easy peasy - free lunch for everyone.

Obama stole $716 billion from Medicare to pay for Obamacare.  It's true.


The Sanity Inspector said...

Myself, I think we fought & lost the budget battle back in the Reagan years, no one's been serious about it since then. "Talk conservative, vote liberal" is a time-test tactic, and its cheat never seems to go stale.

If it's a legitimate cut, Medicare has a way of shutting down that whole $716 billion thing said...

Obama stole $716 billion from Medicare to pay for Obamacare. It's true.

It's false. But that's unimportant. What matters is it feels like it should be true.

Eric said...

It's false? Well, that's a relief.

Every "counterargument" to this claim has been laughable. There's "Ryan's budget kept the cuts", Romney hasn't explained enough, and they're not really cuts because it's only the rate of growth (even Obama called them "cuts").

Obama raided Medicare to pay for Obamacare. Simple as that.

Anonymous said...

"Simple" is the apt word for it.

First things first: Neither Obama nor his health care law literally cut a dollar amount from the Medicare program’s budget.

Rather, the health care law instituted a number of changes to try to bring down future health care costs in the program. At the time the law was passed, those reductions amounted to $500 billion over the next 10 years.

What kind of spending reductions are we talking about? They were mainly aimed at insurance companies and hospitals, not beneficiaries. The law makes significant reductions to Medicare Advantage, a subset of Medicare plans run by private insurers. Medicare Advantage was started under President George W. Bush, and the idea was that competition among the private insurers would reduce costs. But in recent years the plans have actually cost more than traditional Medicare. So the health care law scales back the payments to private insurers.
The CBO determined in 2011 that the federal health care law would reduce Medicare outlays by $507 billion between 2012 and 2021. In a more recent estimate released this year, the CBO looked at the years 2013 to 2022 and determined the health care law affected Medicare outlays by $716 billion.
The only element of truth here is that the health care law seeks to reduce future Medicare spending, and the tally of those cost reductions over the next 10 years is $716 billion. The money wasn’t "robbed," however, and other presidents have made similar reductions to the Medicare program.

We rate this statement Mostly False.

Eric said...

Yeah right. When Republicans "slow the rate of growth" it's heartless, down-to-the-bone spending cuts.

When Obama does it, it's "seeking to reduce future Medicare spending."

When the chief accountant at Medicare says that 15% of hospitals will become unprofitable and doctors will refuse to treat Medicare patients, it's...look!...that Akin guy!

Rules said...

Anonymous broke Rule #14 of Blogging: media factcheckers should only be cited when they confirm the blogger's preferred outcome.

FAST88 said...

This genius quote from one of Mitt Romney's pollsters says it all, really:

"We’re not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact checkers."

TMLutas said...

On January 1, 2013 Medicare payments will be cut by an average of 31%. Every year the doc fix cut restoration gets bigger and make it less likely that we're ever going to guillotine reimbursements like that, ever. Every single projection made on Medicare by a government employee *has to* assume that this year, the doc fix restoration isn't going to happen.

Things aren't as bad as Romney is saying. They are worse.