Patterico's Pontifications


White House Might Want To Do Something About “It’s” Social Media Person

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:32 pm

I couldn’t be more proud:

I am reminded of the time they said that ObamaCare gives your mom “piece of mind”:

As for the substance of today’s tweet: the linked USA Today article states:

By the end of January, 728,410 people had enrolled in private health plans through Covered California, and 100,000 more signed up in the first two weeks of February.

Given the weaselly way that this Administration and its pals define words like “enrolled,” I don’t believe that we can say we know how many of those people have actually paid. But let’s assume that all 828,410 have paid. The Covered California blog told us in November 2013:

[I]t’s projected that about 900,000 Californians will be moved off policies that are discontinuing as of Dec. 31, 2013, because the plans don’t meet the minimum benefits of the Affordable Care Act.

The Weekly Standard confirmed this:

Anne Gonzales of Covered California confirmed to THE WEEKLY STANDARD in a phone call that all 900,000 non-grandfathered plans in California “had to be discontinued by January 1.”

So, 900,000 people were expected to lose their coverage due to ObamaCare. So if 828,000 have “enrolled” (but may not be covered, for all we know), then, um, “yay”?

But it gets worse. Because even this not-so-rosy scenario assumes that all 828,000 were not previously insured. But that would be a faulty assumption. The same Weekly Standard link, back from January 24, 2014, when only 500,000 had signed up, had this to say:

[I]t’s easy to infer that the majority of people who signed up for Obamacare already had insurance. “Of those 900,000 [who lost plans], 310,000 of those would have been subsidy eligible if they came to the exchange,” Gonzales said. Another 20,000 subsidy-eligible Californians lost plans because their insurance carriers were dropping out of the market.

Health care industry expert Bob Laszewski points out that that means at least 330,000 of the 500,000 people who signed up for Obamacare already had health insurance. “If you want to know how many uninsured bought it, subtract by at least” 330,000, Laszewski told THE WEEKLY STANDARD. “The only place they can get the subsidy is in the exchange. So if they’re going to replace their policy, unless they’re really stupid, they’re going to replace it in the exchange.”

OK, so if you now subtract 330,000 from the higher 828,000, we have at most 500,000 signing up who weren’t previously insured. But there are almost 600,000 who didn’t qualify for subsidies. About them, the Weekly Standard said:

What happened to the 600,000 Californians who lost plans because of Obamacare but didn’t qualify for subsidies? Some probably signed up on the exchange anyway, further reducing the number of uninsured who gained coverage because of Obamacare. Others could have purchased Obamacare-compliant plans outside of the exchange.

Still other previously-insured Californians now lack health insurance because of Obamacare. Just how many people fall into each camp? We don’t know. “I don’t think we would have any of those demographics that you’re describing,” Anne Gonzales of Covered California told me.

Any way you slice it, I’m seeing fewer people with coverage today than before ObamaCare kicked in. Even years ago, my children both knew that 828,000 was less than 900,000.

Finally, the percentages still suck. Even this largely positive article in the San Jose Mercury News states:

Enrollment of the Young Invincibles increased slightly from 25 percent to almost 26 percent of those who have selected an insurance plan on the exchange.

The state needs that percentage to reach 36 percent to help balance the state’s exchange’s risk pool of younger, healthier enrollees with the number of older and sicker enrollees.

Even years ago, my childen both knew that 26 percent is less than 36 percent.

White House Social Media Person, its a real problem, isn’t it? And it’s cause? ObamaCare. Sorry to have to give you a peace of my mind, but there we are.

13 Responses to “White House Might Want To Do Something About “It’s” Social Media Person”

  1. Ding.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  2. Healthcare warmening denier! teh math is settled.

    Colonel Haiku (804c65)

  3. i’d rather pay the fine thanks

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  4. tax i mean

    I’d rather pay the tax

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  5. There, they’re, their, happyfeet.

    nk (dbc370)

  6. I forecast when this first passed that fewer people would be insured when it was implemented than were insured when it passed. Additionally, most of the insured are probably medicaid with you and I footing their bill. The people getting screwed are the people working and paying their own bills. This is a classic redistribution program.

    But, I don’t have any sympathy for the people of CA who continuously elect socialists and communists. Reagan was probably the last capitalist they elected. How many years have they sent pelosi and nostralitis to congress. They get what you deserve.

    Jim (145e10)

  7. Leftists suck at math!

    askeptic (2bb434)

  8. Nearly all private plans were discontinued because the state of California added its own mandatory benefits, some of which few plans covered (e.g. acupuncture).

    So, even if “only” 5 million lost their plans nationwide, here in California it was at a much higher rate.

    Kevin M (dbcba4)

  9. It would be interesting to know how many signed up for the non-exchange (but conforming) plans offered without subsidy in California by companies like CIGNA. Or even with the exchange companies, but out side the exchange.

    Kevin M (dbcba4)

  10. And wait until they find out about the doctor networks and the strict drug formularies.

    It is no wonder that Obama has put off the business exchanges for yet another year. The small minority of self-employed whose insurance he has ruined have been uppity enough, but if that was 30% instead of 5%, he’d be afraid to go play golf.

    Kevin M (dbcba4)

  11. Jim #6 – people seem to forget that it is not correct to say that “fewer people” are being insured under Obamacare …

    It has always been Obamacare’s intent that “lesser people will be insured under Obamacare” … the elitist Democrats wouldn’t dream of being caught dead under Obamacare …

    Alastor (2e7f9f)

  12. 9. Comment by Kevin M (dbcba4) — 2/20/2014 @ 12:03 am

    It would be interesting to know how many signed up for the non-exchange (but conforming) plans offered without subsidy in California by companies like CIGNA. Or even with the exchange companies, but out side the exchange.

    In that case, you might subtract less than 330,000 – I suspect not everybody eligible for a subsidy has replaced their policy yet.

    By the way, the 2014 projections might have been made with the idea that many people were goimng to lose their insurance, and they may have been lowballed.

    Sammy Finkelman (3015b5)

  13. Come on now – spelling, grammar, and math are all tools of the 1% to keep the people from expressing themselves! Although I’d think it’s easier to find an English major for the social media job than to find someone who actually completed a degree in economics and believes the Obamacare numbers point to a net societal benefit…

    Warren (c3caa8)

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