O’Care is based on income redistribution, pure and simple. The guiding light of O’Care is OPM (other people’s money). Here Holman Jenkins explains that O’Care was patched together with a logrolling exercise hatched by the Pelosi-led Democrats. Redistribution not reform was and is the cornerstone of O’Care.
HealthCare.gov has started to work as a new year dawns. But work at what? It still delivers a faulty vision of health-care reform.
Let it be said that ObamaCare provides fabulous benefits for some Americans. If you have serious health problems and a low income (but not low enough to qualify for Medicaid), you can get unlimited health care for a premium largely or completely subsidized by someone else.
If you are a young adult under 26, you can be covered on your parents’ policy at the expense of other insurance customers.
Down the road, if your employer doesn’t lay you off or reduce your hours, you may get health care.
But these benefits are delivered to some at the expense of others, thus qualify as “redistribution,” not “reform.” Reform, defined in any rigorous way, would benefit everybody because it would remove distortions that cause Americans to spend too much and get too little for their health-care dollar.
Way back in 2010, Mr. Obama’s strongest business supporter, Warren Buffett, made the case for reform before redistribution, telling CNBC: “Universality—yeah, I believe in insuring more people, but I don’t believe in insuring more people until you attack the cost aspect.”
One might quibble: Why couldn’t a proper law do both at the same time? But what we got instead, as Mr. Buffett foretold in the same television interview, was not reform but “2,000 pages . . . of nonsense.”