Patterico's Pontifications


NYT: ObamaCare Forcing People to Buy “Better” Policies

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:46 am

New York Times editorial:

The Obama administration announced a new policy on Wednesday that will allow many people to renew their existing insurance policies for two more years even though the policies don’t provide the comprehensive coverage and consumer protections required by the Affordable Care Act. The move is designed to provide political cover for Democratic senators facing tough re-election campaigns in Republican-leaning states where the president is especially unpopular.

The Democrats have been hit with a barrage of attack ads from conservative political-action groups highlighting the cases of individuals who complained that they faced higher premiums when their old (less comprehensive) policies were canceled and they were forced to buy new (and better) policies on the health care exchanges established by the reform law. Now the last date for renewing the old policies has been pushed past the 2014 midterm elections, reducing the likelihood of complaints on the eve of voting.

This is a basic concept, but some people don’t get it, so I’ll repeat it. What’s “better” for me is what I choose for myself. My choice might be right and it might be wrong — but I know my circumstances better than the government, and if anyone is going to get it right (or have the opportunity to mess it up) it should be me. Not the government. Me.

So don’t tell me that people are being forced to buy “better” policies. Putting aside the fact that much of what makes the policies “better” is stuff that doesn’t even apply to them — is my policy better for me, a male, if it provides childbearing services? — the issue of whether it’s “better” is to be decided by the individual. If they didn’t choose to buy them, it’s not better for them. Maybe they have less money and better health. For those people, catastrophic coverage — the kind ObamaCare is outlawing — might be “better.”

The point is, it should be our choice. But that’s the way of the left, isn’t it? They always know “better” than you do.


The new health insurance marketplaces appear to be making little headway in signing up Americans who lack insurance, the Affordable Care Act’s central goal, according to a pair of new surveys.

Only one in 10 uninsured people who qualify for private plans through the new marketplaces enrolled as of last month, one of the surveys shows. The other found that about half of uninsured adults have looked for information on the online exchanges or planned to look.

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