Headlines I Wish I Hadn’t Seen

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  1. Studebaker says:

    About the Anthem BlueCross article. Reporter Jon Healy says…

    I feel like a guy who’s continually making excuses for a friend who repeatedly messes up.

    It’s a little disconcerting for proponents of ObamaCare. They always assumed insurers are greedy people who are raking in the dough by the truckload. Then they find out a company in the business of writing small group coverage decided no not participate in the small business exchange that is being created to offer small group coverage.

    Supporters need to stop and ask themselves why this might be the case. Maybe insurers aren’t raking in truckloads of cash; maybe proponents premised their plans on an incorrect assumptions.

    • JD says:

      Unfortunately many people believe that companies have extravagant wealth just “lying around”. They’re going to run all of the businesses out of town trying to get a piece.

    • Tim says:

      Maybe everyone is wrong.

  2. JD says:

    “That perverse result is another illustration of a point I’ve made before, which is that lawmakers should have severed the country’s dependence on employer-provided coverage instead of leveraging it in their bid to achieve universal health insurance.”

    The author has way too much faith in the abilities of lawmakers. Does he know that the inefficient employer-provided coverage developed as a result of lawmakers meddling? Let’s let lawmakers have a break for awhile.

  3. JD says:

    “A good chunk of Detroit’s debt problem is a health-costs problem. The Detroit Free Press notes that the city has $5.7 billion in unfunded retiree health-care liabilities, nearly a third of the city’s debt.”

    Nearly identical to the U.S. situation. The only difference is the country has the “inflate your way out of debt option”, although I don’t know if that is really to be preferred.

    • Dewaine says:

      “This isn’t a policy that cities need to go into bankruptcy to execute; there are many that are struggling with the costs of retirees’ pensions and health benefits. One report from the Pew Center for the States looked at 61 cities across the country and found that, taken together, they had $126.2 billion in health benefits promised to retirees. Only 6 percent of that amount – $8 billion – currently has funding.”

      The author seems to think that this makes it better. She has an “everybody’s doing it” attitude.

  4. Dewaine says:

    ”In states that are working hard to make sure this law delivers for their people, what we’re seeing is that consumers are getting a hint of how much money they’re potentially going to save because of this law. In states like California, Oregon, Washington, new competition, new choices, market forces are pushing costs down.”

    As much as that last line makes me cringe, it may actually be partly true. The old government system wasn’t very good, long live the new government system.

    • JD says:

      Interesting point, we need to make sure and be clear that we aren’t defending the old system, because it isn’t worth defending.

    • Frugal Nurse says:

      I live in Washington state, and health insurance costs are definitely not going down! More double-digit premium increases on the way, even with the exchanges. And no, I will not qualify (barely) for a subsidy.

  5. Sam says:

    Detroit is a mess. They might as well just dissolve the city into all the neighboring counties and towns.

    • Dewaine says:

      I think that would be a fantastic idea. Sell the pieces to whoever wants to buy them. That is the quickest way back for the area.

  6. Tim says:

    Detroit wants to unload 19,389 retirees into ObamaCare’s marketplaces.

    Of course.

  7. Bob Hertz says:

    Retirees should be in the ACA exchanges.

    I assume we are speaking about retirees under age 65.

    ( I know that some cities cover retirees over age 65, which is utterly ludicrous because these persons and their employers have paid into Medicare their entire working lives.)

    Anyways, back to those under age 65: the few remaining taxpayers in Detroit, most of whom cannot retire before 65 (or ever in some cases), should not have pay for a luxurious benefit like retiree health care.

    The ACA exchanges have the effect of spreading any subsidies over all taxpayers of the nation. Not perfect but better than what has happened in some cities – where parks and libraries close so that medical benefits can be paid to well off early retirees. That is more repulsive than anything in the ACA.