What About “Obamacare”?

I am a bit surprised that, amid all the clamor over how everyone is going to “repeal Obamacare on day one,” we have not heard Dr. Carson say “First, do no harm.”

I have no doubt that Obamacare can and must go away. It was born in the Senate, and with assertions that it was not a tax, and later defended at the Supreme Court, on the grounds that it was in fact a tax, which means it was illegally begun in the Senate to start with. Also, we know that nobody who suported the thing read it, and that Ms. Pelosi even felt comfortable telling us that “we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what’s in it”. If that isn’t the craziest thing anybody in Washington has ever said, I would love to know what is.

All of that aside, it is important to remember that you can cause just as bad a wreck by stomping on the brake as by flooring the accelerator.

Study it? Yes. Make plans to eliminate the egregious provisions? Yes. Get rid of the restrictions on selling insurance across state boundaries? They have nothing to do with Obamacare, but they should never have been put in place to begin with, and their presence almost certainly helped to cripple the development of a robust and competitive market based on nation-sized markets.

Design something better? Yes. Rely on markets and competition? Hell yes! Police the living daylights out of pricing practices to make sure that we guard against fraud, waste and abuse? Could we, please, finally? Wouldn’t that be wonderful!

See what’s left to cover and provide basic help for the indigent? Absolutely, and more if possible. We do present ourselves as a civilized nation, after all. That doesn’t mean that you can give everybody everything, but I’ve never known the American people to show any interest leaving someone in genuine need with no help at all.

It will take a bit of study and some leadership to present the case for what can and can’t be done, and how best to do it, but isn’t that the real job? Well, if it is, then let’s try doing that for a change – the real job.

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