Health Care Ruling Roundup : Early Responses

As many long time readers know, I’ve been a proponent of healthcare reform for many years. Today’s ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court that the majority of the Affordable Care Act is constitutional means that my daughters will have more options for healthcare; they will have, as all U.S. citizens will, the option to shop around for insurance. This ability to pick and choose a healthcare plan is the same that the U.S. Congress members have. This is not socialized medicine. This is not a slide into anarchy, chaos and destruction. This is a great thing for the United States. I’m certain that those who disagree with the Supreme Court ruling and disagree with this particular healthcare reform will continue to disagree.

I’m aware that there will be unintended consequences of the Affordable Care Act for any ideologue, regardless of which side of the issue they stand. As for me, I’m hopeful that this law will help to insure more people, improve the level of care and reduce costs to all.

I’ve chosen to say little about the maneuverings over the past few months because it didn’t seem productive. Sure, I hoped the court would rule the way it did, but I tried not to get too worked up publicly.

For progressives, this is a much needed shot in the arm. For regressives, this will be a rallying cry. Hopefully for the electorate, it means a more engaged conversation. I have little hope for nuanced discussion, but I always want people to talk intelligently about an issues, regardless of which side they stand. Rambling, incoherent ignorance gets us nowhere. I’ve not met a single argument against the Affordable Care Act that has swayed my thinking. Given the state of the regressive conversation on the conservative side, it will be interesting to watch the response to the Chief Justice Roberts’ majority opinion.

I also hope that media outlets actually discuss the facts of the law instead of the ideological polarity. My belief is that once Americans understand what exactly the law means for them, they will embrace it. The progressives have done a crap job of

So far, I’ve been most impressed by NPR’s coverage.

To the links:

“Because the requirement remains for people to have or buy insurance, the revenue stream designed to help pay for the law remains in place. So insured Americans may be avoiding a spike in premiums that could have resulted if the high court had tossed out the individual mandate but left other requirements on insurers in place.”

via: What the health care ruling means to you –

“The electoral handicapping will regrettably overlook the decision’s real-world impact on those whom the law is intended to help. At stake in the opinions of nine justices is the well-being of millions of Americans living with chronic diseases such as cancer. They wake up every day knowing that if they lose their job, if their employer decides to drop their health coverage, or if their insurance company raises premiums, they may be unable to get the lifesaving care they need.”

via: For cancer patients, health act a lifeline –

“Fielder, a 64-year-old cancer patient from Universal City, Texas, and Levendoski, a 57-year-old San Diego woman with a history of complicated spinal surgeries, were among those with the most to lose from the long-awaited ruling on the Obama Administration%u2019s Affordable Care Act: people with pre-existing health conditions.”

via: Thrilled and relieved, sick patients cheer court ruling – Vitals

The ruling is a victory for the president, ensuring for now that his signature domestic policy achievement remains mostly intact. It also ensures that the law will play a prominent role in the general election campaign, as Republican candidate Mitt Romney vows to repeal the law if elected.

via: Supreme Court upholds individual mandate, ObamaCare survives | Fox News

“In the mad dash to report the Supreme Court%u2019s historic health care ruling before the competition, CNN and Fox News got a bit ahead of themselves.”

via: Supreme Court ruling: CNN, Fox News fumble covage | TPMDC

CSPAN’s live coverage is breaking to people arguing in the street in Washington D.C. In my view, if people are arguing face to face, there is a chance, albeit slim, that after the expressions of support or disagreement people will actually listen to one another. Once people understand the law and what it does and doesn’t do, I expect the polls around the law will change.

  • reneewvu

    LOVING this hopey changey stuff!!

  • ahem_its_LM

    I’ve been checking here all day to see when and what you would post. Not disappointed. Love it. And love Obamacare.

  • Codex 99

    Jon: you know I’m a fan of your site based on my previous comments however I’m going to have to take you to task on this post. You say “I have little hope for nuanced discussion” and a paragraph earlier you call Liberals “progressives” and Conservatives “regressives.” I have a rather interesting perspective on this issue – I’ve spent 20+ years as a high-level health-care provider and have also seen my immediate family require drastic levels of care. You are absolutely right that the issue is nuanced, I’ve seen it in my own life – but I don’t think you are particularly interested in a nuanced, engaged discussion.

    • Michael Mathews

      I’m interested in hearing about those nuances. I think the ACA is better than what we had before, but still leaves a lot of uncertainty as to just how we will rein in costs.

      • blurb

        You might want to start here:

        “The current estimate of the gross costs of the coverage provisions—$1,496 billion through 2021—is about $50 billion higher than last year’s projection; however, the other budgetary effects of those provisions, which partially offset those gross costs, also have increased in CBO’s and JCT’s estimates—to $413 billion—leading to the small decrease in the net 10-year tally.”

    • blurb

      If your issue is with two words, I’m not sure what you’d prefer. Maybe something more… politically correct? In this case, I can’t think of more politically correct terms to use than progressive/regressive.

      If you’ve read my past healthcare posts (here), many of which are far more inflammatory than this one, you’ll know that I tried at some point to engage conservatives, was met with froth and hypocrisy (and where noted, the hypocrisy of progressives) and gave up. Sad part? I know that I have some very intelligent conservative readers who would present excellent counter arguments.
      If someone from an opposing view presents solid thinking and links to verifiable sources to back that thinking up I’d be thrilled. THRILLED. I’m not saying that the ACA is gold. It’s flawed. I’m saying it passed constitutional muster. I’m saying healthcare is broken in the U.S. I’m saying that the ACA is the closest we’ve come in decades to reforming healthcare. It’s not over, but maybe we can actually have a conversation now about what is in the ACA that will benefit society and what it means without the conservative lies and spin. The Dems have done crap to talk about the ACA, but they’ve now got a second chance to sell it. I wish they would, but I have scant hope they will, given the past three years.

      I think the best post around this issue is this one from 2009. It all went downhill from there.

    • DoraB

      While, I admit, “progress” is most often viewed as being a positive thing and “regress” is most often viewed as a negative thing, each action has the potential to be either positive or negative. Jon did not, in my opinion, put a positive/negative connotation on the words “progressive” and “regressive”. You applied your own personal connotations to those words. To me a person who is “progressive” is more apt to lean toward new ideas, opportunities, etc. A person who is “regressive” is more apt to lean toward already known ideas, opportunities, etc. Neither type is inherently good/bad, they just are. It is our responsibility as individuals to perform the difficult task of setting aside the emotional connotations we apply (knowingly or not) to these labels. Once we’ve done that, it is much easier to have a nuanced and engaged discussion.

  • Ryan Waddell

    What’s been particularly hilarious is the folks on Twitter saying (non-sarcastically) “That’s it, I’m moving to Canada”. 😛

  • Codex 99

    Jon: I think my issue is labels. If you characterize conservatives as regressives then you have set them up for a defensive fight. Ir’s the same idea of using vocabulary to attack the abortion issue (which I really dont want to touch).
    As for me personalty, I’m a fiscally conservative, socially libertarian moderate (if that makes any sense).
    Honestly I was rather surprised (and gratified) that Roberts upheld Obama’s plan.
    Parts of it I really like and parts of it I don’t. Mostly I wonder how we can really pay for it.

    • blurb

      I linked to the most recent CBO data in my response to @twitter-20011601:disqus above. The law was “budget neutral” when it passed. I take it as a good thing that the law seems to have everybody upset. I would ask this: how do we pay for the U.S. military? How do we pay for anything.

      I remember when it came out that Iraq would get universal healthcare, under provisional rule, people started to grumble and that, for me, was the biggest thing: if we can pay for Iraq’s universal healthcare, why can’t we pay for our own?