Among the issues most commonly discussed are individuality, the rights of the individual, the limits of legitimate government, morality, history, economics, government policy, science, business, education, health care, energy, and man-made global warming evaluations. My posts are aimed at intelligent and rational individuals, whose comments are very welcome.

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"Observe that the 'haves' are those who have freedom, and that it is freedom that the 'have-nots' have not." Ayn Rand

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26 September 2012

Obama Transforms Health Insurance Costs by Skyrocketing Them

It is not only the costs of gasoline and the use of coal to generate electricity that Obama is determined to launch through the roof.  No, that many times promised $2500 reduction in family health insurance has already been replaced with a $3065 per year increase so far in 2012.  Much worse is yet to come in 2014 when many more provisions of ObamaCare, more appropriately designated ObamaUncaringTax after the Supreme Court decision, take a death grip upon our throats.  According to the Kaiser Family Foundation and as reported by John Merline of Investor's Business Daily, the damage so far is seen in this graph:

Yes, take a careful look at that $5,565 difference in cost for family health insurance compared to what Obama promised in 2008.  Family health insurance now costs 55% more than what he promised it would cost.  Do you suppose that even enough Democrat Senators could have been persuaded to vote for ObamaUncaringTax had this been public information at the time that monster, unread, unconstitutional, misrepresented bill was passed?

Given the 8.2% decrease in median household income since January 2009, this 55% increase already in health insurance premium cost has been incredibly hard on American families.  Well, of course most Americans did not actually believe Obama claims of cost reductions.  Only the very, very gullible believed that.  So, not many of us actually see the increase as one of 55%, but we all see it as being at least the $15,745/($10,180 + $2,500) = 1.242 times cost relative to 2008 costs.  This is still a hefty 24.2% increase in costs.

For all the commotion about controlling health insurance costs under Obama, those costs rose more under Obama in less than four years than they did in the last four years under Bush.  Since ObamaCare was passed in March 2010, costs went up 9.5% in 2011 and another 4.5% as of August of 2012.  These increases are partly due to covering children into their adult years on their parent's policies, the ban on lifetime coverage limits, 100% coverage for preventive care, and severe restrictions on administrative cost percentages which actually require insurance companies to spend more on payments so they can achieve the 85% payouts relative to fixed costs of operation.  Yes, they actually have to find ways to spend more on medical costs, rather than controlling them.

Many more cost increases lie ahead.  The government central planners will be announcing their required additional benefit requirements.  Experience with state benefit requirements shows that they inevitably add requirements over time and costs go up.  The Council for Affordable Health Insurance has documented 2,200 state insurance mandates and estimates that they have raised the insurance costs in the states from a low of about 10% in the less mandating states to a high of 50% in the more mandate-happy states.

Eight states have implemented an end to pre-existing condition requirements and guaranteed issuance of insurance to anyone wanting it.  ObamaCare pretends that the insurance purchase mandate will prevent this, but it is fully expected that many people will pay the lower penalty, really tax according to the erroneous Supreme Court, and only purchase the ever more expensive required insurance when they are quite sick.  This will result in dramatic cost increases for those who do buy health insurance, as has been seen in the eight states with guaranteed issuance.

The Congressional Budget Office estimates that ObamaCare will drive health insurance premiums up between 10 and 13% in 2016.  With costs such as that, businesses will have to stop offering their employees health insurance.  The many millions of self-employed will largely be unable to afford it.  My expectation is that if ObamaCare is not repealed, we will soon have a much higher fraction of uninsured Americans than we did prior to ObamaCare.

Of course, this will put pressure on the government to expand the subsidies to many more people and that will make the already unsustainable ObamaCare and Medicaid programs ever more unstable and unsustainable.  No doubt many will then come forward eagerly with a claim that a single-payer nationalized health care system is the answer.  We will then totally be owned by the government, body and soul.  Of course, ObamaCare does not leave us much self-ownership in itself.

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