A couple of days ago I posted a note about the $684 million the feds are spending to promote the health care law. Today I read that the $684 is only a part of the PR and advertising budget. The new law, which makes health care coverage mandatory, is also being promoted by recruiting female bloggers (don’t know why only female, maybe Obama thinks they are an easier sell?) to promote it in their blogs. Also, there is another $41 million for publicity that is not a part of the $684 and the state of Minnesota is coughing up something like $19 million more for promotion in Minnesota. It seems most of the states are also kicking in money like Minnesota, so the total budget for promotion of a required federal government program is about $1 billion.
That’s an awful lot of money and time being spent to promote something that is supposed to help everyone, save them money and, everyone is required to take part! If it’s required by federal law, why does it need promotion at all? If it is supposed to be so good, save us money and give us better health care why does it need so much promotion?
My thoughts on an answer to these questions:
The president knows that it is not going to save anyone any money nor improve health care. Most insurance costs for people who already have insurance are going to go up even more. Increased taxes (or more national debt) will be needed to cover the subsidized premiums for those who can’t afford the premiums. Some of the new health care costs will be masked by being paid with our tax money but if you could measure the increases in personal and government spending on health care I think you would be shocked at the amount of increase we are facing.
Those who had no coverage in the past will now have to pay something from their minimum wage salaries. Those uninsured folks can’t afford the subsidized premium any more than they can afford a full premium. Also, they can’t afford the copays. Currently, they get what little health care they can by going to public hospital emergency rooms. They get treated there now, with long waits and outrageous costs to the public, but they do get treated. With the new law, that will still be their only option. Minimum wage jobs don’t allow for copays. Strangely, Obama promised an increase in the minimum wage when he was campaigning for his first term and he has still done nothing on this issue.
I have NEVER seen a government program that does a better job than private enterprise except in protecting the vulnerable people living in poverty and ignorance. Even there, private help is more efficient and effective but it seems that too few people will take the initiative to help others and the government has to take over. Costly, inefficient help is better than none at all.
So, of course, the program needs as much propaganda as can possibly be slathered on the American public.
I certainly hope that over the next few years the affordable health care program that we are now stuck with gets changed enough so that it will provide help to those who need it and leave the rest of the country to take care of themselves as they have for many years now.