Sam Smith has put together an excellent rundown of the pluses and minuses in the health care reform legislation on the Progressive Review. Here is the beginning bit:
The Obamites brag about the bill providing new health care for 32 million people. This is misleading on several grounds:
– Nine million of these, according to the CBO study, are presumed to be people moving to a another form of health care – i.e. from their employer based insurance (4 million) or presently non-group insured (5 million) moving to exchanges.
– Half of the improvement (16 million) would be due to improvements in Medicaid and CHIP. You don’t need a 2000 page bill to do that.
– Subtract the Medicaid and policy shifters from the calculation and you end up with only about seven million new people getting insurance. And this is not, for the most part, because the Democrats are providing it (although there will be tax credits to help some). A big reason will be a hidden tax known as the individual mandate. Thus Obama and the Democrats are claiming credit for giving people something when they are instead requiring them to do it with their own funds. This would be like claiming credit for increasing millions of people’s incomes by reinstituting the draft.
– In sum, about 16 million people are being substantially helped and about the same number are being manipulated into thinking they are getting more than they are.For example, private insurance costs can be expected to soar, but tax credits are unlikely to rise at the same rate.
Read the rest of his piece at http://prorev.com/2010/03/whats-really-in-healthcare-bill.html.