Crisis Cow

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

It should come as no surprise that a bill passed by an administration known to operate on the premise of never letting a "crisis go to waste" will result in one new crisis after another. Joseph Rago, writing for the Wall Street Journal, notes that President Obama has long admitted that his government takeover of the medical sector is "essentially identical" to the statewide scheme enacted by Massachusetts, and which is now being likened to a "train wreck."

[T]he five major state insurers have so far collectively lost $116 million due to the rate cap. Three of them are now under administrative oversight because of concerns about their financial viability. Perhaps [Governor] Patrick felt he could be so reckless because health-care demagoguery is the strategy for his fall re-election bid against a former insurance CEO.

The deeper problem is that price controls seem to be the only way the political class can salvage a program that was supposed to reduce spending and manifestly has not. Massachusetts now has the highest average premiums in the nation.
Shortages and rationing will obviously follow from this, and the following very harsh method will be used to impose them:
Meanwhile, Richard Moore, a state senator from Uxbridge and an architect of the 2006 plan, has introduced a new bill that will make physician participation in government health programs a condition of medical licensure. This would essentially convert all Massachusetts doctors into public employees.
As I see it, such a measure would, at the very best, make it more difficult to avail oneself of concierge medicine, and would certainly represent a dangerous beachhead of government interference with that business model.

Far from representing a cash cow of savings for the government -- which would still not justify its passage -- such health care "reform" is instead proving to be a limitless source of new excuses for even more government meddling with our health.

-- CAV


Mo said...

honestly if I were a health insurance company I would shrug, give them all fingers (not just the middle) and go find somewhere else to do business. Honestly it doesn't help that the insurance companies are unable to defend themselves properly.

Gus Van Horn said...

"[I]t doesn't help that the insurance companies are unable to defend themselves properly."

That goes for any business that concedes any moral legitimacy to government regulation or pragmatically decides to support same in hopes of "having a say" in the details.