Thursday, January 09, 2014

Go home, Harry - you're drunk

Here's Harold Meyerson in the WashPost, typing under-the-influence:
Despite the treasured right-wing talking points, it’s increasingly clear that Obamacare is a success. Moreover, in places where Obamacare is not succeeding, it’s also clear that the right wing is to blame.
Natch.  This is the classic Obama pronoun shift: when things are a success, it's "I" but when they're a failure it's "we" then later "you" by which he means "Republicans who didn't clap for Tinkerbell."
Charles Gaba, an enterprising Web site designer, has taken it upon himself to track the number of Americans who have gained health insurance under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Tallying those who have signed up on the state and federal exchanges (2.1 million), those who have obtained Medicaid coverage (4.4 million) and those who gained coverage through the law’s requirement that private plans allow parents to cover their children up to age 26 (3.1 million), he cites more than 9 million newly insured through Obamacare.
The "9 million newly insured" has become the new mantra for the Democrats as demonstrated in Nancy Pelosi's churlish "don't call it Obamacare" press conference.  It's complete nonsense.  The 2.1 million is based on estimates of Americans who have chosen a plan but may or may not have paid for it; it's the "Amazon shopping cart" estimate.  Also it doesn't account for the 4.7 million Americans who have lost the health insurance plans they liked but weren't allowed to keep.  Some states have reported that the payment rate so far is only around 50% so there's a million people who are not actually and factually insured.

The 4.4 Medicaid coverage number is even shakier.  It's counting for all gross enrollments in Medicaid whether or not Obamacare had any motivating impact:
Which brings us back to our number above: 1.9 million total enrollees approved in October or November in states that actually expanded Medicaid. If we are correct in our assumptions above—that is, if 10 percent of these enrollees are due to the Obamacare expansion—then we have an actual estimate for Medicaid enrollment due directly to the ACA’s expansion of Medicaid: 190,000.
That's a yawning chasm from 4 million but - as Rachel Maddow shows us - reality is what we choose it to be.

Finally, there's the "Pajama Boy" demographic of hot cocoa, warm government, and delayed maturity.

This brainfart of a "law" was worth the economic disruption and Constitutional crisis to extend coverage to a sliver of Americans who will probably never see a doctor anyway.

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