Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Sibelius Thuggish Rule

This bothered me extremely the first time I heard it, but then I realized that in 2014 when this all is supposed to happen there is a chance that she won't actually be there. And if she is, I expect that the lawsuits will become a tsunami.
'As a consequence of us getting 30 million additional people health care, at the margins that's going to increase our costs—we knew that," President Obama said at his press conference Friday in response to a question about rising health spending.

That wasn't how he sold the plan, but, anyway, that's a truism. Here's another: The White House was always going to blame insurance companies for any cost increases, even when its own policies cause them.

Witness Kathleen Sebelius's Thursday letter to America's Health Insurance Plans, the industry trade group—a thuggish message even by her standards. The Health and Human Services secretary wrote that some insurers have been attributing part of their 2011 premium increases to ObamaCare and warned that "there will be zero tolerance for this type of misinformation and unjustified rate increases."

Zero tolerance for expressing an opinion, or offering an explanation to policyholders? They're more subtle than this in Caracas.

What Ms. Sebelius really means is that the government will prohibit insurers from doing business if reality is not politically convenient for Democrats. ObamaCare includes a slew of mandated benefits for next year, such as allowing children to remain on their parents' plans until age 26 and "free" preventative care (i.e., no direct out-of-pocket cost sharing for consumers). The tone of Ms. Sebelius's letter suggests that she doesn't understand that money is exchanged for goods and services, and that if Congress mandates new benefits, premiums will rise.
In a lot of ways I'd love to see the Dems lose all control of the House and Senate, but on the other side of the argument, they'll then be able to blame the Repubs for all the problems when they conflict with the desires of the ONE. Frankly, a slight majority in both houses for the Dems would ensure Obama would be restricted to only one term and end this BS.
ObamaCare gives Ms. Sebelius's regulators the power to define "unreasonable" premium hikes, which will mean whatever they decide it will mean later this fall. She promised to keep a list of insurers "with a record of unjustified rate increases" and then to bar them from ObamaCare's subsidized "exchanges" when they come on line in 2014. In other words, insurers must accept price controls now or face the retribution of a de facto ban on selling their products to consumers four years from now.
The usual way of governing. Don't bother to define what the law actually means, just leave it so vague as to allow the career bureaucrats to make up the rules. This Obamination really must be terminated.

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