A Reminder: I Don't Know About Obamacare, and Neither Do You

(NOTE: Based on time elapsed since the posting of this entry, the BS-o-meter calculates this is 14.472% likely to be something that Ferrett now regrets.)

Obamacare is complicated.  Really complicated.  And it’s a complicated thing dropped into a thing so complicated that nobody understands how it works, which is to say The US Economy.
If you have a very clear idea on how things are going to go, you’re probably wrong, and even if you’re right it’s probably in that “stopped clock” sense of things.
At this point, Obamacare is out there.  And it’s really impossible to know what effects it’ll have on the US economy, or on people, or whether it’s a success or a failure, and at this stage you’re all looking at the kid’s head crowning and debating, “This baby will be a Harvard Graduate and a stockbroker!” versus “This baby will be a serial killing hobo!”
We do not know.  The first days of the second Iraq invasion were awesome and all the Republicans were like WOO HOO DEMOCRACY FOR EVERYONE and then it went poorly and the Democrats went SEE THIS WAS ALL A BIG MISTAKE and then the surge happened and things aren’t great, and certainly way more expensive than we thought, but not a total fucking loss on the war front but not a slam-dunk success either.
I suspect Obamacare will, in the end, be a mild plus with a lot of expense and inconvenience.  But how would I know?  That’s dependent on literally every state and federal politician in America having their say and input on it.
Is it a fiasco or a fine thing?  Shut up.  Give it time.  Judge it for what it is or is not doing now!  Speculate!  But spare me the absolute proclamations.


  1. NC Narrator
    Nov 6, 2013

    I have now read most of the Affordable Care Act. Holy God.
    Pretty sure they were paid by the word and/or syllable, as I’ve rarely seen a more wordy document in my entire life. I had to keep reminding myself that they were trying to address as many possibilities and contingencies as they could. Plus, they had WAY too many cooks stirring the soup, since everyone (Republican, Democrat, Independent, Space Alien) wanted their personal ideas included.
    There are parts I’m super excited about, and then there are parts where I think, “Yeah, good luck with that.” I am strongly reminded of when the Family Leave Act came online. There was much wailing and gnashing of teeth, along with dire predictions of the collapse of our economy if businesses were forced to comply. A year after it was initiated, no one was talking about it. The financial apocalypse failed to appear – as most apocalypses tend to do. (Weirdly unreliable things, aren’t they?)
    I have a suspicion that the ACA is going to travel that same road, in which case it has good company. Social Security, Medicare (and all of its little spawn like Part D and whatnot), Medicaid, etc, all enjoyed that relatively brief period of being the monster under the bed. At least until time and experience switch on the light, and they turn out to be a sock, your little brother’s rain boot, and that hamster that you lost last week and thought the cat ate.
    I don’t see it being the panacea that cures all societal ills, nor do I see it being the economic/social disaster it’s been predicted to be either. Most likely, it will help some people, annoy other people, and just generally fade into the general consciousness until only the frothy conspiracy theorists remember that it was supposed to be evil.

    • Jericka
      Nov 7, 2013

      FMLA? That federal law saved my ass twice inside of five years.
      I worked for a company large enough that it had to follow that law. I took FMLA time to care for my husband when he was dying of cancer, and having a job to come back to kept me going. It kept me functional.
      Then I was the one fighting cancer, and the law kept me able to keep my job and my medical appointments. I needed the insurance that came with the job. Medical bankruptcy does not appeal.
      I’m hoping that the ACA is functional and an improvement on our current system. I felt really tied to Corporate Job because that is how I was insured(once my husband passed), and being without insurance was scary.
      Having insurance tied to employment as it is here seems like a huge unintended consequence of tax laws, and not a good one. The ACA may not be perfect, but at least it is an attempt to fix some of the glaring problems. Losing a job and ending up with COBRA was often like becoming unemployed and suddenly adding an extra rent payment. Your savings cushion could go really fast, and if you let your health insurance lapse instead, you could end up uninsurable(certificate of continuous coverage anyone?).
      It is almost like we as a society think unemployed people, or people who are employed by small businesses and not paid enough to afford medical insurance policies don’t deserve medical care or something.
      Personally? I was hoping for single payer or a public option. I’m aware that no system is perfect, and that the ACA is complicated, but, I am hoping for the best.

    • TheFerrett
      Nov 7, 2013

      Better you than I. Christ, how long did it take you?

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