Editorial: Most cancelled health plans are no great loss
People who are really good at getting things done know that it is sometimes better to ask for forgiveness than permission.
That if you slow down to see what other people think, chances are high that you will meet delay, resistance and frustration. That if you really believe that something is a good idea, you just go ahead and do it. If it works, as you believe it will, great. If it doesn't, well, that's where the asking for forgiveness part comes in.
Barack Obama is asking our forgiveness. As he should.
Obama, on the stump and in office, should not have told us, over and over, with so much emphasis and assurance, that Americans who had a privately purchased health insurance policy they liked would be able to keep it, even after he was able to keep his larger campaign promise of overhauling the way America pays for health insurance. It wasn't true and, if he wasn't fully aware of that, he should have been.
But even those Americans who are justly steamed at the commander in chief for his misleading sales job should stop and consider: What if he had asked our permission?
What if Obama had told us, straight out, that a great many of the health insurance policies on the market those purchased by the relatively small number of people not covered by an employer-provided plan or by Medicaid or Medicare were garbage?
As documented by journalists who do not work for Fox News, a good portion of the insurance plans now sending out millions of cancellation notices were the kind of policies that offered only small discounts on doctor visits and drugs, demanded high co-pays and deductibles while setting low maximums for lifetime coverage and could always cancel anyone, even those who had loyally paid their premiums for years, for turning up with a pre-existing condition, or any condition.
Those policies, the ones that Obamacare will not approve and certainly won't offer tax credits for, are the vast majority of those that are being withdrawn. People who are understandably panicked about being without insurance should feel better when they get health coverage worthy of the name on the online exchanges. Once they start working, that is.
Maybe Obama was in denial. Maybe he was afraid to tell us the whole story for fear his dreams of health reform would be dashed by the portion of the insurance industry that wanted to keep selling us trash.
Maybe it will all work out in the end. Maybe Obamacare will earn the forgiveness of generations of Americans who will finally have access to a level of health care the rest of the civilized world has long taken for granted.
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