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One Man’s Apocalypse is Another Man’s Freedom March 13, 2017

Posted by geoff in News.

The usual suspects are chattering away about the evils of Trumpcare. This NYT article by Paul “I’ve never made an accurate prediction in my life” Krugman is typical:

Trumpcare vs. Obamacare: Apocalypse Foretold

The Congressional Budget Office report on Trumpcare is out, and it’s devastating: 14 million people losing insurance in the first year, 24 million over time, with premiums soaring for older, lower-income Americans — in many cases, the very people who went strongly for President Trump.

I’m going to admit straightaway that I haven’t looked at Ryan’s bill, so I have no idea what Trumpcare is all about. But, unlike Paul Krugman, I can read a CBO report and process what it says. Here’s what it says about those 14 million people:

Most of that increase would stem from repealing the penalties associated with the individual mandate.

Aha. So the bulk of those people who would not have insurance are those who didn’t want to pay for insurance in the first place. The young and healthy, who were dragooned into buying insurance by the individual mandate.

Yes, Paul, those people would now be free to choose how to spend their money. I guess that seems like the Apocalypse to you.

*With regards to the “soaring premiums,” I can only say that the CBO did a crap job in assessing the impact of the new legislation on insurance premiums. I say this because they only accounted for the effect of the young and healthy leaving the market, ignoring the effects of coverage changes and tax reduction.


1. Jimbro - March 13, 2017

Where were the CBO’s dire warnings about Obamacare prior to its enactment?

2. Mark in NJ - March 14, 2017

I think the bigger outrage is the tax dodge embedded in the plan.

GOP could’ve made the case that, yeah, we’re kicking low-income people off Medicaid but at a savings of > $800B! – that’s sensible fiscal conservatism and the sort of necessary entitlement reform that we’ve been preaching for yrs.

But wait! – CBO says savings only = $337B, so where’s the discrepancy?

GOP: Oh yeah, we also made some tax tweaks that disproportionately favor the highest earners and the revenue loss is gonna wipe out 75% of those “savings.”

So once again the question is raised: are you really the party of eat-your-peas financial responsibility? Or just about fatcat tax breaks?

Uh, I think we know the answer now.

3. geoff - March 15, 2017

So once again the question is raised: are you really the party of eat-your-peas financial responsibility? Or just about fatcat tax breaks?

Since all of the taxes you mention were implemented with ACHA, they aren’t considered to be tax “breaks” by the GOP. They’re a restoration of the pre-ACHA tax system. Calling it “fatcat tax breaks” is a rather narrow historical view.

4. Uncle Bill - March 22, 2017

Your link to “here’s what it says” does not work. Can you provide a better link? I would like to read more.

5. geoff - March 23, 2017

Uncle Bill: So sorry the link went defunct. Apparently they changed “defaultfiles” to “files” in the link. Here’s my best guess as to the actual link. Let me know if that doesn’t work.

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