“In the United States of America, no one should go broke because they get sick.”

Thus spake President Obama.

What remained unsaid was that he thinks it’s OK if insurance companies go broke.

Whatever you may think about insurance companies, they provide insurance. If they are driven out of business by government mandates that raise their costs — and Obama’s expansive, intrusive program will raise their costs, significantly, if it’s implemented — health insurance will be less available from the private sector. This means that under his scheme health insurance will become increasingly and inevitably a government-provided service.

Obama also said that he isn’t against insurance companies. Maybe he’s not, I don’t know. But he wants them to change their behavior in ways that will increase their costs and reduce their profits. Whatever he says he wants to do, and wants other people to do, he can’t force anyone to provide goods or services. Companies will eventually choose to go out of business if their alternative is to lose money in perpetuity. And on the margin a future of money-losing alternatives is what President Obama offers to health-insurance companies (and perhaps also to drug companies, medical-device manufacturers, hospital operators and many physicians) under his plans.

15 thoughts on ““In the United States of America, no one should go broke because they get sick.””

  1. He is not against insurance companies, he just needs a villain. The interesting question is when will the insurance companies get tired of being the whipping boy and fight back?

  2. YOU LIE!

    It’s like the Left has rooms full of people doing Google searches on terms such as “health care”, “socialized medicine”,”insurance companies” and “Obama”. What else explains the recent swarm of drive-by commmenters?

  3. Obama and friends don’t want insurance companies to go broke, they’re just economically naive and don’t understand how the market place works.

    Obama doesn’t look at the economy and see a vastly complex web of feedback loops providing incentives and disincentives to individuals. He looks at the economy and sees only the scales of comic justice. He has a naive, medieval-like view of economics in which morality (defined as security, stasis and station) is the only basis for economic decisions. He believes that if you create a “just” system that all material benefits will automatically flow from that state.

    Obama believes that in his “just and fair” system insurance companies will get “just and fair” profits. He probably believes that insurance companies will be even better off long term.

    His vilification of insurance companies arises from his cyrpto-marxist intellectual roots. Leftists in general believe that ordinary people are sheep and that if ordinary people don’t instantly agree with leftists they do so only because they have been led astray by some elites. In Marxism, business is always the villain so Obama defaults to the belief that businesses that profit from the current system must be leading the sheep astray.

    The real danger that Obama and his ilk poise isn’t that their evil, its that they have a dangerous combination of naivety, emotional immaturity and hubris that causes them to believe they can reengineer any part of human existence and make it better.

  4. Shannon – don’t we know it.

    Jon, what do you think of this interpretation (by Oblio):
    Health care stocks seemed to go up sharply. I interpret this as investors saying, the speech will fail, Obamacare is finished.?

  5. I agree with Shannon. Obama isn’t an evil guy – he just lives in a fantasy land with unicorns, bubble gum trees, lollipop flowers, and chocolate rivers.

    His “plan” of getting everything for “free” simply will not work that way.

  6. Rush: Sorry, I misread your comment.

    Tat: I don’t know. There are conflicting interpretations. For example, some commenters have said that the Obama health scheme would help insurers by allowing them to insure only low-risk customers, letting the high-risk customers go to the govt pool.

  7. Oh, Shannon, I’m disappointed. I had a truly marvelous picture in my mind of a Supreme Court staffed by Groucho, W.C., Stan and Ollie, Henny, and, well, you can fill in some of the rest.

    The thought of some pompous big shot attorney being questioned by Prof Irwin Corey about a complex insurance case had me in tears.

    Now that would be both comic and cosmic justice.

  8. Regarding comic justice…I’d look forward to the confirmation hearings for Jeff Dunham, the ventriloquist famous for “Achmed the Dead Terrorist.” We know what his first words would be…

    “If this is the Senate Judiciary Committe, I’ve been screwed!”

  9. “I agree with Shannon. Obama isn’t an evil guy – he just lives in a fantasy land with unicorns, bubble gum trees, lollipop flowers, and chocolate rivers.”

    I disagree. If the man was 20, even 25 or so, the delusions of youth might still be rationalized by his critics in his defense. But, at 48 years, the pervasive slippery prevarications; the willful exploitation (the demagoguery) of the deluded and the self-aggrandizers; put this leader into another category. Evil might not be exactly right on, but it’s pretty close.

  10. In the United States of America, no one should go broke because they inherited something.

    In the United States of America, no one should go broke because Oprah gave them a car.

    In the United States of America, no one, not even a Vice Presidential candidate, should go broke for having been hit with a bunch of dismissed lawsuits.

    In the United States of America, no one should require medical attention for being within arm’s reach of SEIU goons.

Comments are closed.