Lambert Strether can always be counted on to provide anti-ACA arguments whose incoherence go to 11. After a discussion of how the Medicaid expansion sucks because some companies might make money from providing health coverage to people (as opposed to the awesome old days, when insurance companies made money by not providing coverage to people, only they would have spontaneously combusted without the ACA because these profits don’t actually count or something,) we get this eternal classic of muddled thinking:
Below — and check me, readers, this part has numbers — we see 1.7 million applicants in limbo + 2 million accounts with “discrepancies” = 3.7 million, and 3.2 million / 8 million = 46% of 2014′s ObamaCare surge have screwed up Medicaid accounts. Of course, the Republicans can’t hold hearings on this, let alone run a Dukakis-style “competence” campaign because (a) even they couldn’t handle the hypocrisy of denying Medicaid to their own citizens while alos exposing how poorly the administration handled expanding it, and (b) they would rather wank about repeal anyhow, to throw red meat to their base and because markets (see Profits, supra). Anyhow, ObamaCare’s their plan.
The first sentence is problematic enough. Yes, there are some bureaucratic delays, something that is unprecedented in the history of government, and I blame Barack Obama, who we can safely assume is the governor of all the relevant states. Plus, you’ll note from his sources that his numbers are greatly overstated; nothing like 3.7 million people are actually going to go without access to health care even temporarily. I also note that if Lambert’s preferred policy of “do nothing until single-payer can get 60 votes in the Senate long after we’re all dead” was implemented, approximately 0% of these people would get medical insurance; this is OK because, as we’ve already established, better millions of people go uninsured than anyone make a dollar insuring them, very progressive. But it’s the argument starting with the second sentence where things get really good. Republicans won’t hold hearings on this because:
- Republicans would be hypocrites for wanting Medicaid coverage to be better implemented, since Republican statehouses generally aren’t accepting the Medicaid expansion at all. (Admittedly, as Lambert has already informed us, for this we must blame Barack Obama for inventing the concept of judicial review.)
- Also, Republicans actually want to talk about repeal, because the ACA is actually about profits for business. (But, wait, why aren’t they accepting the Medicaid expansion? I was just told that this was nothing but a massive payoff for insurance interests? I think the lines of communication between Lambert’s sentences have been cut off.)
- And, finally, Republicans won’t hold hearings because…the ACA is the “Republican plan.” We know this because of the 0 Republicans who voted for the ACA, the fact that the Republican health care plan in the 12 years they controlled the House of Representatives was “nothing,” and because…as conceded in point a) Republicans have steadfastly refused to implement a core provision of the ACA after they mounted a successful legal challenge to it. Can’t see any flaws in this logic!
Arguments against passing the ACA from the ostensible left are inevitably terrible, but at least generally they can keep the plainly self-refuting arguments that are ludicrously charitable to the Republican Party they’re perfectly happy to have run the country in different paragraphs. Going from “of course Republicans hate the Medicaid expansion” to “the Medicaid expansion is the Republican plan” in two sentences takes things to a whole different level. Anyway, if only Hillary Clinton had been around to sign Hillary Clinton’s health care plan rather than Barack Obama signing it we wouldn’t have had any of these problems.