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Old and Sick Swamp Obamacare Rolls


One result of the Obamacare employer mandate delay is increased pressure on the exchanges: if employers drop coverage of their employees, or even simply don’t offer coverage to currently uninsured employees, more people will have to migrate to the exchanges to fulfill the individual mandate. But the delay isn’t the only unexpected new influx into the Obamacare exchanges. Both Detroit and Chicago are hoping to save money and reduce pension obligations by moving retirees off city health care plans and onto the exchanges. Bloomberg:

[Detroit’s Emergency Manager Kevyn] Orr wants to give current and former workers health-reimbursement accounts. The city would pay from $100 to $250 a month to help with medical costs or premiums under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, according to a proposal to city unions […]

Chicago plans to phase out retiree health coverage by the beginning of 2017, according to a May 15 letter from Comptroller Amer Ahmad.

It’s not clear yet what the outcome of this will be, or whether other states or cities will adopt this tactic. But one thing is true: Obamacare’s success depends in large part on enough healthy young Americans signing up for insurance to balance a risk pool that will now include the previously uninsured sick. If, in addition to them, tons of currently insured older Americans are going to lose their insurance and be kicked onto the exchanges, the number of younger people signing up for coverage has to be that much higher to counteract those new people entering the exchanges.

The ACA, to put it gently, is already on shaky ground. Just last week, for example, the LA Times reported that UnitedHealth, the nation’s largest insurer, is dropping out of California’s individual market. Similarly, Blue Cross Blue Shield will not participate in the exchanges in Iowa and South Dakota in 2014. And the WSJ puts the delay of the employer mandate in its discouraging context. Along with the Supreme Court ruling that invalidated the Medicaid expansion (28 states haven’t yet agreed to expand) and the refusal by many states (over 30) to set up their own health exchanges, the delay is the third major challenge to the central goal of the law: expanding access to insurance.

“You’ve got three body blows toward expansion of coverage,” said Paul Keckley, executive director of the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions, a research unit of Deloitte LLP. “It’s three punches in a row.”

In light of implementation challenges like this, it will already been hard enough to sign up an adequate amount of young people to keep premiums low. If cities’ new way of saving money includes swamping Obamacare’s rolls with retired and formerly insured older Americans, the the law could be in big trouble.

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  • Corlyss

    “It’s not clear yet what the outcome of this will be, or whether other states or cities will adopt this tactic.”
    Blue model cities in dire financial straights will most certainly do it. After all, it is Fed approved.
    The news that Obamacare passed in spite of all the reasons it shouldn’t have made me physically ill and put me in the emergency room on an antibiotic IV drip. I’ve lived in a more or less state of constant anxiety over what the Feds would do, since the law mandates application to Congress. I have the same plan the Congressmen do. The self-interested powerful Congressmen were the only protection we Fed retirees had to prevent our plans from being jettisoned in a Federal gesture of self-sacrifice. I still don’t have an answer, tho’ I’ve asked my insurance co. and OPM.

    • bpuharic

      Hey I got an idea! I’m conservative and pro life

      let’s just let people die because it costs too much to save ’em. Let’s just ban abortion ‘cuz that affects women and sex, but once those kids are born, if they die….

      too bad

      • longrange1

        I’ve got a better Idea! I’m progressive and wipe my A$$ with the constitution so lets pass a spending bill we can’t possibly afford pay, load it with pork to pay for the votes then blame Bush, Conservatives and the Tea Party

        • bpuharic

          Proof that the TP knows nothing about economics

          FIRST THEIR economics destroyed this economy

          THEN they tried to blame it on Obama

          Then they ignored the fact BUSH’S last budget has a HIGHER DEFICIT than Obama’s last budget

          THEN they ignored the fact deficits ALWAYS rise in a recession. It’s a law of economics

          But their 3 cornered hats are so cute

          • longrange1

            I thought you said it was the Conservatives that ruined the economy. The TP never controlled the House, Senate or anything else but it did live rent free in your mind.

            Incidentally, your pointy little head is much cuter than a three cornered hat.

          • bpuharic

            The American right is one of the most right wing major parties on the planet. They sat back and invented mythologies about welfare queens without realizing the real welfare queens had names like “Romney” with his $10M FDIC bailout

          • GunAwesomeSauce

            OK fine, let’s “compromise” (the left loves that word when it means “give me everything I want” or else “give me everything I want slightly slower”).

            I’ll end Romney’s welfare if you end the welfare queen’s welfare. Deal?

            And there is no myth about welfare queens. If the government is going to pay more when you have more kids, it sets up a perverse incentive to those in poverty to have more kids so they can get a bigger government check. The government is paying the welfare queen a bigger salary to have more kids. What do you think is going to happen?

            Also, the lie that there is no safety net outside of the government is one of the greatest lies and usurpations of power from the people the leftists ever pulled. The truth is, there has always been a safety net in this country since the Founding. It just wasn’t until the early 1900’s that the government usurped that role from churches and charities.

          • bpuharic

            That includes the $100 billion subsidy for the 4 largest banks that are TBTF? The massive agribusiness subsidy?

            The right works itself into a lather over the idea that some (cough cough BLACK) person may get an extra 5 bucks in welfare but says NOTHING about the

            carried interest deduction

            the lower capital gains tax the wealthy pay

            TBTF subsidy

            etc. Poor people generally do or have worked for their benefits?

            The rich spongers not so much

            And it’s a wonderful delusion that medical care can be provided by charity. Conservatives are so cute with their many myths.

          • GunAwesomeSauce

            Yes, that includes all subsidies. Ethanol and all of it. Heck, the entire income tax should be repealed so that these kinds of subsidies can’t even be passed.

            It has nothing to do with black people. I said nothing about race. White people on welfare respond to the exact same perverse incentives. So, you can drop the race card the left always loves to pull out.

            So, all those charity drives I see asking for donations to someone’s medical care are a myth?

            Also, we haven’t had a free market health care system in 50 years or more. Medicare destroyed that. It’s called a monopsony.

            A true free market health care system would have already lowered prices to the point where more people could afford it. But, because of Medicare and large employer mandates, there is no true health care free market in a general sense.

            Yes, there are limited circumstances, LASIK and plastic surgery being notable examples. And what do yo know? In those practices, the procedures get more advanced and the price keeps coming down.

          • bpuharic

            Welfare, of course, is not a subsidy. It’s time restricted, unlike our year after year subsidy to the banks.

            It’s preposterous to presume the multi trillion dollar healthcare system can be maintained by charity, but the right just loves this myth.

            Medicare is age restricted, in case you hadn’t noticed. No one under 65 is eligible so that’s a non starter

            The myth is that a ‘free market’ would have lowered costs. Proof? Well, none. In fact, healthcare is inelastic so providers can charge what they want. Costs go UP as recent work on MRI’s has shown.

            Ours is virtually the only free market system around

            and it’s a failure

          • GunAwesomeSauce

            Welfare is the very definition of a subsidy. Payment made to you just because you exist, not because of any services you have rendered. Yes, banks shouldn’t get subsidies either because it sets up bad perverse incentives for banks.

            Medicare sets certain policies about how much they will pay for what because Medicare has only so much money per year. Insurance companies looking to keep their costs low then set their own policies patterned after Medicare.

            The whole government-provided plus government-mandated system is one big monopsony situation. A free market system would have no government provided part and no government mandated part. Each individual would decide for himself and the health care system would then orient itself around that.

            I just gave two examples of free market health care lowering costs, LASIK and plastic surgery.

            I also described how we don’t have a free market health care system in general because of Medicare and forcing large employers to provide health insurance. When you have a monopsony situation, it drives costs up. Therefore, you can’t say our “free market health care system is a failure” because it is not in general free market to begin with.

          • bpuharic

            Uh no. Welfare is a temporary support for people who are unable to support themselves. A subsidy to a bank is largesse, given by right wing socialists to banks that are quite capable of supporting themselves.

            Lip service. That’s all you give is lip service. The right has NEVER cut a socialist program for the rich. On the contrary, they keep building them into govt because they BELIEVE in them. They think moral hazard doesn’t apply to the rich.

            It’s ridiculous to see the right waging war on the middle class, lecturing us on how worthless and lazy the middle class is and it should support itself.

            How? You guys GUTTED the middle class with 3 decades of stagnant wages while the 1% tripled theirs.

          • GunAwesomeSauce

            What you are talking about is a Republican party corrupted by leftism. Now you understand the Tea Party. The Tea Party was formed against corrupt Republicans just as much as it was formed against Democrats.

            It’s why you see John McCain calling people like Justin Amash and Thomas Massie wacko birds, because the newer Republicans refuse to go along with the corrupted Republican establishment anymore.

            What has gutted the middle class has been using the government to hit up the middle class from both sides of the economic spectrum against the middle class. The poor have Democrats. The rich have lobbyists. Don’t think for one second that the liberal 1% doesn’t get itself exempted. The only ones with no real representation are the middle class. So the middle class is left footing the bill for both. And so it becomes a disincentive. Why should I try to make more when I am just going to be taxed more for the only reason that I worked harder and tried to improve my own station in life?

          • bpuharic

            Oh brother…the US right is so far right it wants to return us to the 19th century and that’s ‘leftism’?

            No worker protection at all…no wage protection. No protection from the greed of the 1%…pure social darwinism. The rich, with their socialist demands, protected by the right, has bankrupted this country.

          • GunAwesomeSauce

            Socialism in whatever form is leftism.

          • Jim__L

            Timeline check:

            Crash: Sep 2008

            Obama’s inauguration: Jan 2009

            Tea Party catalyzation: Feb 2009

            Earliest Tea Party political impact: Fall 2010 election

            About the only thing controversial about that is whose policies are most to blame for the crash. Methinks if Obama can keep blaming Bush for his failures this far along, Bush supporters have a plausible argument blaming Clinton (or Carter, for that matter).

          • bpuharic

            The objective evidence (e.g. the Reinhart Rogoff study) finds that financial sector recoveries are slower than others. One doesn’t need to ‘blame’ Bush for anything since it was clearly conservative policies that caused this recession and no matter WHO was president the recovery was going to be slow.

            Of course, if you’re not interested in EVIDENCE that merely makes you


  • MarkE

    For the amount of money that Detroit and, presumably other failed cities can put into the system, their retirees (and possibly their current employees) are looking at a Medicaid or Medicare HMO. Although a little disappointing, it is a better floor to care than the emergency room entry level of care. It is probably sustainably affordable, especially if there is a little improvement in the efficiency/effectiveness/productivity of delivery.

  • ljgude

    By building on an already too expensive system and not thinking through the likely consequences the ACA looks like it may be setting itself up for radical failure. The US has to fix it or see it collapse if it is as badly designed as it appears to be. But we don’t know yet how much stress cities which are struggling will put on the system. We also don’t know how many people will choose to pay the fine, and how many people will find themselves in under 30 hour part time jobs, or in companies that limit themselves to 49 employees. I suspect a lot of the latter group will choose to eat if the fine is less expensive – as I understand it is. I happen to live outside the US but I am aware some of the more popular central American retiree destinations are popular because they have actual good and, you know, affordable health care.

  • mikegiles

    From the start, the idea was to dragoon the young and healthy into the system, to support all the promises made to everyone else; pre-existing conditions, illegals, etc. I’ve always thought of ObamaCare as “no fault insurance” which is, in reality, “everybody’s fault insurance”, with the good drivers subsidizing the “rate suckers” as the commercial says.

    In any case, the idea was also to “backdoor” in, nationalized health care; long a liberal pipe dream – despite it’s obvious failure everywhere it’s been tried. Obama wanted it for the same reason he wanted bullet trains. Not because it has worked or worked well, but because of his love affair with EuroSocialism.

    • bpuharic

      Where has it failed?

      Oh. Nowhere. Vs our ‘free market’ bloated, overpriced and inefficient system

      Apparently the right is happy with failure as long as it’s American failure.

      • charlesrwilliams

        We do not have a free market system. Government drives up the cost of medical care in this country and Obamacare will make it worse.

        • bpuharic

          If that were true, other western countries would have higher healthcare costs.

          Your assertion is testable

          It’s wrong.

          • Rick Caird

            The assertion is not testable. The conditions are not the same. These other nations do not have the same heterogeneous population we have. They do not have the legal and illegal immigration we have. The do not have the same quick access to medical services we have (try to get an MRI in Canada in a day or 2 or try to get fed by the NHS in England). We also, being a richer nation, can afford more medical services.

            The fact, it is your claim that is wrong. In fact, your claim is wrong in its totality.

          • bpuharic

            Really? It’s not testable? Ever BEEN to Europe? Your assertion their population is homogeneous is risible. In fact there are few areas of the world more diverse than their war history shows

            Yet all western European countries have lower healthcare costs than we do.

            They certainly DO have access to good medical care. Just try to get an MRI if you don’t have health insurance (guess you forgot that).

            So every assertion you’ve made is incorrect, starting with the laughable assertion Europe is homogeneous!

          • teapartydoc

            Try getting an MRI in Europe WITH insurance.

          • bpuharic

            Haven’t seen anyone complain. And our MRI’s are overpriced since many healthcare providers overspend on them in the name of ‘competition’.

          • megapotamus

            You haven’t seen anyone complain? You are not following developments on this issue. The British National Health is in the middle of a scandal due to thousands of hospital patients STARVING, not failing to get a fancy diagnostic test which there, only a Beatle or a Royal will ever get. Socialized medicine is as disastrous as anything else socialized and yes, the US medical system has been largely socialized for decades.

          • bpuharic

            Let’s see…last year in America, the richest country on earth

            26,000 people died due to lack of access to healthcare

            You decry ‘socialized’ medicine but can’t name a single benefit OUR system provides other than that some people get rich on it

            Which, to the right, is justification enough

          • charlesrwilliams

            What I wrote is that government drives up the cost of medical care in THIS country. And in THIS country specific government policies over the last 70 years have resulted in the most expensive health care in the world. Obamacare will do nothing to fix this but there is plenty of reason to expect that it will make things worse.

      • Rick Caird

        If you are concerned about “bloated, overpriced and inefficient system”, you ain’t seen nuthin’ yet.

        • bpuharic

          I quit believing America’s right wing when they told us (Greg Mankiw) that the people who bankrupted our economy were genetically superior to those of us who work for a living

          • Ritchie The Riveter

            Strain strain strain … strain those gnats!
            Then fling’ em out
            See if they’ll stick
            From wherever you’re at …
            As you swallow camels of dysfunction
            ‘Till your belly’s fat …
            Strain strain strain … strain those gnats!

          • megapotamus

            I am certain I am the creature you deride as ‘right wing’. I have never heard of the person you mention. Shall we take the obscurants of the Left as speaking for all of you? Yes, clearly.

          • bpuharic

            You’ve never heard of Mankiw?

            Professor of Economics at Harvard? Former adviser to Bush?

            Says alot.

  • Bill Adams

    “Obamacare’s success depends in large part on enough healthy young Americans signing up for insurance to balance a risk pool that will now include the previously uninsured sick. If, in addition to them, tons of currently insured older Americans are going to lose their insurance and be kicked onto the exchanges, the number of younger people signing up for coverage has to be that much higher to counteract those new people entertaining the exchanges.”

    But it’s _so much worse_ than that. Because in the Obamaconomy, more and more healthy younger people will _have no jobs_, meaning that if they do sign up, it will be on subsidy, and they will make the balance sheet worse, not better.

    • bpuharic

      This is the time machine view of Obama. Somehow he got in a time machine after his inaugural in 2009 and went back to cause the 2007 depression under George Bush.

      Remarkable. The revisionist right wing process of blaming Obama for Pearl Harbor, the Titanic and Pompeii has begun.

      • longrange1


        So, its ok if the Won ignores economic reality it pursuit of his socialist ponzi scheme?

        Now we understand, Obamacare is George Bushs fault.

        • bpuharic

          The right simply ignores the fact their own deregulation of Wall Street blew the roof off the economy. Now that they’re screaming for scapegoats, the middle class is looking pretty good….

          • Ritchie The Riveter

            That’s YOUR deregulation, bucko … not only was it incentivized by Progressive lawfare to open the doors to sub-prime lending, your champions like Franklin Raines socialized the losses through Fannie and Freddie, and your champions Frank and Dodd kept their foot in that door when the Bush Administration tried to close it.

            Progressives OWN this malaise – especially now, after seven years of having power to make things better.

          • bpuharic

            Uh Phil Gramm authored the bill. He’s anything but a ‘progressive’. Seems right wing revisionism extends to redefining ‘reactionary’ as ‘progressive’.

            And Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were minor players, having been REGULATED until 2004 when the GOP deregulated them to allow them to enter the market

            In 10 years between 1997 and 2007, when the GOP had congress AND the presidency, credit default swaps ballooned by


            to sixty two TRILLION dollars. More than the GDP of the entire planet

            And conservatives did that.

          • longrange1

            I’m sorry, you seem to be the one looking for scapegoats.

            Gramm was a political opportunist that first entered the national political scene as a “Democrat” in the House. Hardly a Conservative.

          • bpuharic

            The conservative mindset, locked into a literalist viewpoint which leads, inter alia, to creationism, can’t understand that conservatives

            USED to be Democrats.

          • longrange1

            Conservatives have always been conservatives.

            Progressives are always in denial about their fascist underpinnings and their non-belief of the rule of law.

            Slave holders, copperheads, eugenicists, racists, socialists, fascists, communists and national socialists. What progressives believe is in their “innate” superiority to the common man. They believe they should rule and should be entitled to special privileged and exemption from the rule which guide the rest of us. I know there is a myth that there was some kind of inversion in the mind set of the two political parties . That’s decidedly untrue as the myth of the Aryan superman, the New Soviet man et al. They must always change their name as they make filthy the name they use now and people become aware of who they are.

            The general public is now waking up.

          • bpuharic

            Conservatives have always been in denial about their fascist origins, leading up to Greg Mankiw’s assertion the rich are genetically superior to working people. White conservatives were racists and defended racism in print, for example, William F Buckley and James J Kilpatrick (I can hardly wait until the right wing starts calling THEM liberal!)

            National Socialists (nazis) were CONSERVATIVES. They stood for church, traditional values, nationalism, and property rights. That’s why they killed every communist they came in contact with, invaded the USSR and gave aid to fascist Franco in his fight against communists. When, of course, they weren’t building gas ovens.

            Southern conservatives defended ‘states rights’, racism, Jim Crow, racist views of marriage, and their own view of ‘eugenics’ where blacks were inferior to whites

            So go ahead run from your history

            I’ll remind you

          • Fred

            _I’ll remind you_

            Oh thank you massa b.
            We ign’ant conservatives just wouldn’t know what to do without your wisdom to guide us. The only thing more amusing than your ignorance is your arrogance.

          • bpuharic

            Oh…remind me…who wants a cop in every bedroom? Oh yeah…conservatives

          • longrange1


      • richard40

        More pathetic blame bush. Now he is blaming bush for the failure of obamacare. This administration and their leftie apologists are the biggest bunch of finger pointers and buck passers I have ever seen.

        • bpuharic

          Hey can’t help it if you can’t keep your distortions straight. YOU guys mentioned the Obamaeconomy…which is actually RECOVERING from the greed (cf Alan Greenspan) of the right wing Bush years. Yeah I can understand why you blanch when people point this out. The failure of right wing economics is plain for all to see

        • ebola131

          It’s the Alinsky, Cloward-Piven strategy.
          They’ve been preparing for this for generations.
          If you aren’t willing to fight, the republic is lost.

          • bpuharic

            Funny to watch right wingers, who presided over the greatest economic collapse and biggest loss of jobs in almost a century, talk about conspiracies against America. While the right engineered a takeover of the middle class by the 1%, they tell us how worthless the middle class is

      • megapotamus

        Actually Obama was as instrumental in the 2007 collapse as any individual one could name. As an ACORN attorney/agitator he was in the forefront of the sit-ins and other street level activities that accompanied the Community Reinvestment Acts mandate to ignore lending criteria, the well-named Liar Loans that inflated the real estate bubble. Look in to it, if you are concerned.

        • bpuharic

          Does anyone need more proof of the paranoia of the right? THIS is a GREAT lie! Nice job!

          The CRA? Only 1/25 largest banks that went bankrupt were subject to it. And subprime mortgages never went above 10% of all mortgages until 2004 when the GOP controlled the govt.

          However, it was credit default swaps, deregulated by the right, that allowed the collapse of the economy

          Buy you gotta admire the right. 1 guy in a Chicago phone bank collapsed a 14 trillion dollar economy!

          The Onion couldn’t write a better lie

  • teapartydoc

    I have not yet seen any coverage in the press about what level of reimbursement there will be for services and procedures done by practitioners. Do they expect us to simply fall in line when the time comes? And if these unfortunates are then to be cared for by intermediate providers, how are those patients to have faith that the decisions made on their way to specialty services have been correct ones?

  • Joseph Blieu

    I see now that another feature of Obama care is a stealth bailout of state and local government by having the average taxpayer become responsible for subsidiziing the healthcare portion of retirement obligations made by politicians to their employees. I was waiting for the admistration to come up with a way to Federalize the mistakes of big blue cities and states.

    A problem may be that the Democrats may find evil corporations shedding their retirement costs on the public as well, this will have to be stopped somehow because this is certainly not what Nancy and Harry wanted. I don’t know if the penalty for dumping employees on the state plans applies to retirees too.

    But I am glad that later this year I can become an artist or a clown and not be worried one bit if I can’t pay for my own care, that is a direct promise from Nancy P.

    • bpuharic

      Corporations, in their relentless war against the middle class, aided and abetted by America’s right, have already divested themselves of any responsibilities whatsoever to working people. 30 years with no pay increases while CEO pay hits record highs…no pensions, no unions, no job security.

      • longrange1

        You mean companies like GE, GMC (throught the UAW), Nike, Microsoft, Apple and the other suckers of the government teat that donate heavily to the Democrats?

        • bpuharic

          The UAW represents Americans. Corporations represent their boards

          And GE makes stuff. Wall Street does TAKES stuff. And in 2012 most WS money went to the GOP in fact, the GOP ran a WS banker for president.

          Guess they figured that, if someone owns something, they should run it.

          • Ritchie The Riveter

            GE’s biggest profit center for quite a while was finance – is that included in “making stuff”?

            And how much of that stuff they made was only profitable for them because the Powers That Be were subsidizing it in the name of the Climate Change Cult?

            Corporations represent their shareholders … the board is there to represent the shareholders’ interests

            Unions represent other large groups of people, through their own “board” of professional leadership.

            Both can be equally greedy … but only one can hide behind the Wagner Act and engage in collusion that the other would be legally penalized for.

            That is what Progressives conveniently fail to mention, when they make the unions look like saints and corporations look like sinners.

          • bpuharic

            Climate change is real, but a MINOR part in GE’s profits

            And shareholders are not workers. Almost NO middle class people own stocks. When we bailed out WS we bailed out the wealthy, NOT the middle class.

            We have almost no unions in this country, and the 30 year right wing assault on middle class wages shows it. THe right has been totally successful at eliminating middle class wage growth while TRIPLING that of the 1%

          • teapartydoc

            How do you explain the fact that a majority of conservatives are working class?

          • bpuharic

            WRM would explain it as being due to a Jacksonian view of the world, derived from Scotch Irish settlers.

            Me? I grew up as the son of an inner city Pittsburgh Steel worker and put myself though the U of Pittsburgh. So I AM WORKING CLASS. You’ll get no psycho babble bull from me about the intermittent stupidity of the conservative working class.

          • ebola131

            Well, I’m the son of an inner city Bethlehem Steel worker and put myself through Lafayette College, Summa, Phi Beta Kappa, Rhodes Scholar; and you are still full of excrement.
            You don’t believe in the Republic or the Constitution; only in your view that what others earn belongs to government to redistribute.
            Your view has never been successful, anywhere on the planet. When OPM runs out, revolutions begin.
            Hang onto your shorts because war is coming.

          • bpuharic

            Hmmm I can understand your frustration. If I went to a 2nd rate school like Lafayette, instead of where I did my grad work, Lehigh, I’d be bitter too. Makes sense.

            The right has one loyalty, one value

            money. Capital. that’s it. that’s the be all and end all of human worth: Capital.

            You’re a socialist for the rich. I’m a believer in the efficiency of the free market. You’re a Wall Street communist

          • werewife

            Grad work at Lehigh? And you’re a snob about it? Wish you could have been at NYU with me, where the action was…

          • Fred

            Wait. I thought the free market was a myth, a “Sacred Scripture” I believe you sarcastically called it. Now you believe in it? Frankly, b., judging from your comments here, and especially the profoundly stupid comments you have made about religion elsewhere, I have a hard time believing you got much past high school, unless, of course, you were an education major.

          • bpuharic

            The free market is an ideal. And that’s all it is. It does not and can not exist. If you doubt that, read the work of Joseph Stiglitz and Robert Solow.

            As to religion, if you’re gullible enough to believe in THAT idea you’ll believe anything, G K Chesterton notwithstanding.

          • ebola131

            Be a good boy now and tell mommy that you’re still seeing the monster in the closet.
            She’ll take you back to the psych lab at “Lehigh” for your next shock treatment.

          • Joseph Blieu

            I can’t bielieve you are anything but an elitist. If a man went to a 2nd rate college and was a Rhodes Scholar and a Phi Beta I would think a progressive would be proud of him and not insult him. Some people can’t acknowledge the sucess of others and only want praise for themselves. I am afraid our President is one of those. I don’t understand what a wall street communist could ever be, does she believe in making a lot of money so that it could go to each according to her need?

          • bpuharic

            Actually I was making a joke. Lehigh and Lafayette are traditional rivals.

            A Wall street commie is, as Stiglitz says, someone who believes in privating reward and socializing risk, which is what the right wing has engineered in this country. When the rich make billions…as John Paulson and John Thane did in 2007 as the economy collapsed, the right swoons. When they get in trouble by gambling, the middle class loses jobs and the right wing bails out the rich.

          • megapotamus

            No middle class people own stocks? Ever heard of a 401k? Of course vast amounts of equities (and bonds, too) have long been part of the most modest portfolio, you absurd hick.

          • bpuharic

            A 401K is not a stock plan it’s a retirement plan and is taxed like regular income, NOT as capital gains. The wealthy saw to it that THEIR stocks are taxed at 15% while the middle class pays a higher rate.

            Sheesh don’t you guys know ANYTHING?

      • Ritchie The Riveter

        Progressives like you have LIED to the people about THEIR responsibilities, and the value of their own initiative … and encouraged them to believe in the mirage of the Blue Social Model, as you are doing now.

        That is why so many have not shared in the economic expansion of the last 30 years – which HAS worked FOR EVERYONE WILLING TO EXERCISE THEIR PERSONAL INITIATIVE TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE OPPORTUNITIES – instead of “outsourcing” that initiative to their union boss, employer, and/or government to get prosperity FOR them.

        • bpuharic

          Let’s see.. Mitt Romney and other Wall Street folks were NEVER progressive but they LIED about the ratings agencies when they blew up the economy

          Our recession has NOTHING to do with social welfare and EVERYTHING to do with the right wing assault on American values. That’s why the US has the worst social mobility in the western world.

          You’re simply lying. There is no middle class social mobility. The single greatest factor in determining the income level of children is

          NOT HARD WORK

          but the wealth of their parents

          So much for right wing mythology

          • megapotamus

            Wow. Lots of lies and stupidity in this one. Maybe some day you commie freaks will be able to vote out this ‘right wing’ that has bedeviled you all these years. Pathetic.

          • bpuharic

            To the right wing, anyone who questions the Sacred Scripture of the mythical ‘free market’ is a commie

            This is just another Godwin’s law violation. It’s such a cliche

          • Fred

            Hey doofus, Godwin’s law applies to yelling “Nazi.” Communists were just as evil but were not the same and if I remember my cold war history right, “commie” was a pejorative diminutive for communism. But keep on telling us conservative ignoramuses all about our history. Moron.

          • bpuharic

            I’ll type this slowly so you can follow. I was making a point that obviously you’re too dim to understand

            The right screams “commie” whenever someone deviates from Revealed Wisdom that the Free Market speaks Ex Cathedra.

  • charlesrwilliams

    How can an insurance company even price a product that is sold on the exchanges if they have no idea how expensive it will be to cover the people who do sign up?

  • megapotamus

    Follow the money, or material incentives of whatever sort. Everyone else will.

  • xbox361

    Obama’s plan in action
    Bankrupt cities shed liabilities to the rest of the nation.

    Awesome community organizing!

    • bpuharic

      The recession started in 2007.

      Obama became president in 2009.

      To the right wing, those are minor details. After all, the next step is to blame him for Pearl harbor

      • xbox361

        ha ha
        Detroit and Chicago are cities in states not under Federal jurisdiction.
        and oh, how Obama has ended the recession, just like closing Gitmo, ending Patriot Act abuses, blah, blah blah!

        • bpuharic

          Cities go bankrupt in good times. Cherry picking data is characteristic of the epistemic closure on the right.

          And the economy is growing. We are adding jobs. Conservative economics resulted in millions of jobs lost during the Bush recession.

      • xbox361

        over 13,000 comments and 2 followers
        you must be proud
        a result equaling our Obama recovery

        • bpuharic

          Don’t follow news much do you?

          1. The economy was losing 800K jobs/month when Obama took office, due to the Bush economic collapse

          2. The Reinhart Rogoff study showed that recoveries from economic collapses are slower than others

          But the right wing is immune to evidence. It’s a socialist movement for the wealthy and they don’t let facts stand in the way.

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