As of Jan. 1, 2014, Obamacare – or the Affordable Health Care Act – is now law. Harking back to Nancy Pelosi’s now infamous remark, “But we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it away from the fog of the controversy,” we’ll now find out how it will work.
Given the incredibly rocky start, things don’t look good for the Health Care Act. One sign: documentary filmmaker Michael Moore (who usually loves all things Democratic) has said “Obamacare is awful.” In an op-ed in today’s New York Times, Moore gripes that Obamacare suffered from “clueless planning” and that it’s not affordable for many folks after all.
For many people, the “affordable” part of the Affordable Care Act risks being a cruel joke. The cheapest plan available to a 60-year-old couple making $65,000 a year in Hartford, Conn., will cost $11,800 in annual premiums. And their deductible will be $12,600. If both become seriously ill, they might have to pay almost $25,000 in a single year. (Pre-Obamacare, they could have bought insurance that was cheaper but much worse, potentially with unlimited out-of-pocket costs.)
Politico put together a fun list of quotes regarding Obamacare. From a “fog of controversy” to “awful,” let’s see what folks have said about our new American health care system:
- “A thousand Social Security numbers being sent to the wrong people is not a glitch!” — CNBC contributor Carol Roth on HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher”
- “We’re going to do a challenge. I’m going to try and download every movie ever made and you are going to try to sign up for Obamacare — and we’ll see which happens first.” — Jon Stewart to Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on “The Daily Show”
- “There’s so much wrong, you just don’t know what’s broken until you get a lot more of it fixed.” — Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini
- “They had three years to get this ready. If they weren’t fully ready, they should accept the advice Republicans are giving them: Delay it for a year, get it ready and make sure it works.” — CNN’s Wolf Blitzer
- “Basically, HHS has screwed this whole thing up.” — Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.)
- “[It’s] like trying to repair a car while someone is driving it.” — George Edwards, computer scientist, to FoxNews.com
The best we can say at this point is the actual implementation of the Affordable Health Care Act is that it’s going to be interesting. And let us remember the Chinese curse: “May you live in interesting times.”