Suggestion to journalists

When Romney says “repeal and replace,” ask him “replace with what, precisely”?

Every time Romney Mitt, the Demon Barber of Wall Street, says he wants to “repeal and replace” Obamacare, ask him “Replace it with what?” Make him say, yes or no, whether he favors guaranteed issue, community rating, and a ban on exclusion of pre-existing conditions. So far, Romney ain’t sayin’.

And while you’re at it, ask what he’d do about providing health insurance to the folks fighting the wildfires in Colorado. They’re federal employees, but they’re part-time temporary, seasonal employees (since wildfires don’t happen in the winter or the spring). So they’re not covered.

Meanwhile, here’s the President, in his “explainer” mode.

Now I’m looking forward to the “happy warrior” version, explaining how the Republicans want to leave you at the mercy of the health insurance companies.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com

10 thoughts on “Suggestion to journalists”

  1. Mark, the Demon Barber song is, as Lisa Simpson would say, “apt.” Genius nickname. I’m sorry to say it but it appears to be deserved.

  2. Meanwhile, here’s the President, in his “explainer” mode.

    What I’d like to hear him explain goes something like this:

    Even as a speak, there are people being rushed to Emergency rooms right now who have no health care insurance. Some have fallen off of ladders, some have been hit crossing the street, some have felt sudden debilitating chest pain. They are of all ages, genders, skin colors, ethnicities. All are uninsured. Who is paying for their hospital visit? The American Taxpayer. Here is what the ACA asks of each American…

    And then a concise but detailed personal pecuniary description along this recent Kevin Drum post:

    http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2012/06/buying-insurance-vs-paying-fine-whats-tradeoff

    Explain the thing to people in terms of dollars and coverage, incomes and coverage, penalties and the lack of coverage.
    Don’t just tell us we will like it 10 years from now, 20 years from now.
    That doesn’t get it done. Not even a little.
    It might be true, but it is arrogant and lame.

    If you want ACA to fly get into basic blunt money talk.
    Drum shows the way: This means that the net monthly premium for our family of four would be about $40.
    Make people think: You mean I can get my family covered for $40 dollars a month? Holy #@$*!

    Keep in mind that Drum is doing “back of the envelop” calculations, because apparently, no one has made front of the envelop calculations and shared them with the American people. This is beyond dumb, it is glaringly dumb…

    1. It’s good these freeloaders will finally be forced to buy insurance.

      Aye…
      That’s what the Dems voted for.
      With this major sub clause:

      From each according to what they can afford.

  3. One small correction, it’s not because the firefighters are part-time, it’s because they are temporary. They aren’t employees at all in the off-season. Just another one of the many reasons we need the ACA.

    1. Then that puts him in an even more awkward position of having to explain how he would do that without the mandate, which, you’ll remember, was the bitter pill we all had to swallow to pay for the pre-existing conditions protection. Of course everyone likes *that* part.

      1. That is certainly right, and it’s the best point Ginsberg made in her opinion. And it was the health insurance industry that insisted on the mandate.

        So while I agree with your statement economically, Eli, I also think PPACA is a mess economically and that it will bust an already swollen budget. Since it was scored, CLASS has gone by the boards, and the Medicaid expansion limitation is another potential loss on the revenue side. And the original scoring was unrealistic since it compared more years of revenue with less years of expense. Socialized approaches to funding health care are killing budgets all over the world, so why would we expect it to be different here?. We do need a much more creative approach than what we have seen from either party, or for that matter, any think tank, so far. If it was an easy problem, it would have been solved long ago.

        One thing I do know, as I have commented here before (several times) – comprehensive insurance plans are a loser – for all parties involved. That’s because they are not really insurance – they are bill paying. If there is an insurance solution out there, it needs to be restricted to the major medical loss side. That’s insurable, wellness visites are not.

        1. and yet wellness visits save money for insurance companies and society over the long run. it’s a so sad that the market does such an appalling job of dealing with healthcare. it’s almost as if it were destined to be a function of government to deal with it.

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