Recruiting Conservatives to Rearrange Deck Chairs on the ObamaCare Titanic

Here’s how the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation described its $30,000 grant to the American Enterprise Institute in March, 2011, for two half-day assemblages of conservative experts on health care:

…The discussions will focus on: (1) developing concrete statements about specific health reform problems or problems with the ACA from the perspective of the assembled conservative experts; and (2) identifying potential solutions. The project will select topics by identifying major policy differences between ACA and competing Republican proposals.

Translation: Although we all know that the ObamaCare Titanic is soundly constructed, dissidents differ about the style, arrangement, and construction of its deck chairs. We wish to celebrate those differences by inviting dissidents to outline and discuss their competing proposals for deck chair redesign.

Comments (6)

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  1. Devon Herrick says:

    The debate about the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is so divisive not because the goals are not worthy. Indeed, both conservatives and liberals have similar goals in common. The debate is divisive because the structure of the ACA violates the principles of sound insurance, is coercive and has perverse incentives counter to cost control.

    Whether you are a opponente or a proponent, many of the flaws will have to be addressed at some point.

  2. Linda Gorman says:

    I don’t agree that ACA goals are worthy.

    There is nothing worthy about forcing people to finance their medical care by buying a policy with a structure that they would not normally choose from a private third party that they would not normally deal with.

    Nor is there anything worthy about legislating centrally planned health care. To do this one has to be willfully ignorant of 20th century history.

  3. Larry C. says:

    I always knew that AEI was a bit stodgy. But getting in bed with the enemy? What gives?

  4. Tom H. says:

    I’m sure you are right about rearranging the deck chairs, Linda.

  5. Linda Gorman says:

    I don’t think it’s getting in bed with the enemy. Grants are grants. One must assume that the people who participated discussed what they felt was important. They probably never saw this RWJF summary.

    What I found interesting was the hectoring way in which RWJF described the limits placed on the discussion. It seemed to feel that participants needed to be lectured about providing “concrete statements” about “specific health reform problems.”

    Perhaps advocates of the nanny state simply find it difficult to stop telling other people what to do.

  6. Brian says:

    When something is constitutionally unsound, it may not matter how worthy the goals are.