06/13/2018

Goodbye To Obamacare

Francis Menton, Manhattan Contrarian

Obamacare!  It was supposed to usher in a new era of healthcare nirvana.  Universal "coverage"!  Better health!  "Bending the cost curve"!  "Affordable" care!

Have you noticed that you haven't been reading much about Obamacare recently?  Yes, there was a blip of press mentions last year, when the Republican Congress was making some failed attempts at full repeal of the Act.  (See my coverage here from September 27, 2017.)  And since then, mostly radio silence.  So, was universal "coverage" in fact achieved?  And, what happened with the health results?  And with the famous "cost curve"?  I'll bet you don't know.  Could it be that the press just doesn't report things that are unfavorable to the official narrative?      

And now, rather suddenly, it looks like Obamacare may be on its last legs.  Recall that when the Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act in 2012, the reasoning was that the so-called "individual mandate" was enforced with a tax, which the Court said the Congress had the power to enact.  But then one of the provisions in the big tax reform statute at the end of 2017 repealed that tax, effective January 2019.  Whereupon 20 states brought a new lawsuit in the Northern District of Texas asking for the logical conclusion to be drawn, that all of Obamacare was now unconstitutional.  On Thursday (June 7), the Justice Department filed a brief in that case agreeing with the plaintiffs that various sections (basically, most of the heart) of Obamacare "must now be struck down as unconstitutional":

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Thanks to "bracket creep," the inflation of the 1970s pushed millions of taxpayers into higher tax brackets even though their inflation-adjusted incomes were not rising. To help offset this tax increase and also to improve incentives to work, save, and invest, President Reagan proposed sweeping tax rate reductions during the 1980s. What happened? Total tax revenues climbed by 99.4 percent during the 1980s, and the results are even more impressive when looking at what happened to personal income tax revenues. Once the economy received an unambiguous tax cut in January 1983, income tax revenues climbed dramatically, increasing by more than 54 percent by 1989 (28 percent after adjusting for inflation).

 

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