Originally, I was going to use the step-stool analogy, only the problem here is that in order for Obamacare to work all three problems need to be resolved. At the moment the administration is more or less working on one full time, and desultorily working on another. The third has yet to be addressed. So… consider a set of gears, with three obstructions. All three obstructions must be cleared before the machine can operate.
If it can operate.
- Obstruction One: millions of people are losing their health insurance (and those that aren’t are getting massive premium hikes). Up to almost 11 million will, according to NBC; 2 million already have, according to CBS (CNN can’t bear to give hard numbers, and instead settled on general pronouncements of doom). As has been discussed on numerous sites, this is a personal problem-shading-to-disaster for a measurable percentage of the population of the United States; it’s also an indication that the President flat-out lied when he said that if you like your plan, you can keep it. The White House is… not doing anything about that, apparently. Unless you count unleashing Valerie Jarrett upon the world.
- Obstruction Two: almost half of the previously-uninsured don’t… know enough about the danged law. I and Jim Geraghty are just as shocked as you are, but apparently this is a thing: “Even though the health insurance exchanges opened about a month ago and hundreds of millions of dollars are being spent promoting them, almost half (47 percent) of uninsured Americans still do not know where they can get information on how the Affordable Care Act will affect them…” The White House is supposedly doing something about that. Supposedly.
Quick note about these two points: taken together, they indicate that there’s a huge pool of people who are now vulnerable to next year’s individual mandate. So, time to access the website…
- Obstruction Three: the websites don’t work. The federal exchange is a hot mess, and the state exchanges only look good in comparison. Neither half of the exchanges network is particularly prepared to handle a rush of tens of millions of people, which is the major reason why the White House bought itself six more weeks of time by fully extending open enrollment to March 31st, 2014. This, of course, won’t help the people who will be without coverage starting January 1st, 2014 (see Obstruction One) – but one step at a time, hey? Presumably, the entire focus of the White House is now engaged in fixing this problem, and to be fair: it’s the prerequisite for fixing the other ones.
…but the problem is that, once the site is fixed, the administration’s real problems start. Because while various Lefty pundits may be content to argue about how many angels can dance on the premium of a new Obamacare policy the populace is going to focus on Hey, my healthcare costs doubled and my deductible is godawful, instead.
The populace will not be happy about that. And I do not blame them in the slightest: they were lied to, by incompetents. And I’m not going to blame ordinary, decent Democrats for being upset, either: heck, my mother is a Democrat who raised me to be a God-fearing, patriotic American (as did my Democratic father, God rest his soul). They didn’t deserve to be lied to by callous, vicious con artists who wanted a better spot at the trough. And we need to do a better job at saying that, frankly.
Moe Lane (crosspost)