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Friday, March 24, 2017

TrumpCare in the House

March 24th, 8:05 a.m. PDT -- There was to have been a vote on the AHCA last night in the House, but they postponed it, given that the GOP whip counts had it embarrassingly losing, in light of the opposition coming from right and left factions within the House Republicans.

I was watching the news developments, and posted a couple of tweets.

Today is my weekly volunteer shift day, so I'll try to keep up via my iPhone. Maybe they'll post photos of the Trump bus tire tracks on Paul Ryan's back. What will happen to Rationing by "Price"?

BTW, Margalit's latest: "A Citizen's Amendment to RyanCare."


From STATnews:

See my prior post Update on the March for Science.


Yoooge GOP House majority (+44 seats). This was supposed to be a layup.
OK, now what? For one thing, see my review of the book "Obamacare is a Great Mess." I am reminded also of my prior post Election Day 2016 can't come soon enough. Also, re-read some Indu: The Price is not right. Indu Subaiya speaks out.

A frenzy of reaction ensues today. From The New Yorker:

House Republican leaders abruptly pulled their health-care proposal, the American Health Care Act, from consideration on the House floor on Friday. Below, New Yorker writers offer some initial reactions to the news.

It’s hard to exaggerate what a setback this is for the Republican Party and for Donald Trump. For seven years now, the G.O.P. has had one signature issue: getting rid of Obamacare and putting in its place a more free-market alternative. When the Party got the chance to fulfill its ambition, it failed in spectacular fashion. As for Trump, his whole shtick is that he’s a winner. Well, the courts blocked his travel bans, and he just suffered a huge loss in Congress. To be sure, he’ll try to weasel out of responsibility. His aides are already shifting the blame to Paul Ryan. But Trump is the President. He endorsed this bill and this failed strategy.

John Cassidy...


More John Cassidy from The New Yorker:
THE HEALTH-CARE DEBACLE WAS A FAILURE OF CONSERVATISM conservative lawmakers, pundits, and policy wonks will spin this. They will argue that Trump and Ryan betrayed free-market principles: if only they had proposed the outright repeal of Obamacare, and put forward a bill that genuinely liberated the health-care industry from federal intervention, everything would have worked out well. That will be the story—and it is a fairy tale.

The fact is that the health-care industry, which makes up about a sixth of the American economy, isn’t like the market for apples or iPhones. For a number of reasons (which economists understand pretty well), it is riven with problems. Serious illnesses can be enormously costly to treat; people don’t know when they will get ill; the buyers of health insurance know more about their health than the sellers; and insurers have a strong incentive to avoid providing their product to the sick people who need it the most.

Since the days of Otto von Bismarck, most developed countries have dealt with these problems by setting up a system in which the state provides medical insurance directly, or else mandates and subsidizes the purchase of private insurance, setting strict rules for what sorts of policies can be sold. Obamacare amounts to a hybrid model. It supplements employer-provided insurance, the traditional American way of obtaining health care, with a heavily regulated (and subsidized) individual insurance market and an expanded Medicaid system.

It is far from perfect. But, in combining mandates with subsidies, regulation, and access to a state-administered system for the poverty-stricken and low-paid, it is intellectually coherent. (Many of the problems it has encountered arose because the mandate to purchase insurance hasn’t been effectively enforced, and not enough young and healthy individuals have signed up.) Since it leaves in place the basic structure of private insurance and private provision, Obamacare is also conservative. As is well known, parts of it resemble a proposal that the Heritage Foundation put forward in 1992.

Today’s conservatives act as if they can simply wish away some of the problems that Obamacare was created to deal with...
Yeah. A good read.

Okeee dokeee, then. Muslim Ban? Strike One. #AHCA? Strike Two. The count is 0 and 2, and we're still in pre-season play.

"AHCApocalypse Now!"

More to come...

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