Obamacare Falls Short of Expectations
by Peter Remsen on Friday, November 8th, 2013
We, as Americans, have an obligation to uphold and maintain our society. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 16% of Americans live below the poverty line, including 20% of all the children in America. A staggering 1.2% of Americans, or almost four million people, live on $2 a day or less—the “extreme poverty line.” These people are typically immigrants, but also men, women, and children down on their luck. Regardless, they clearly ought to have the right to be healthy. President Obama’s Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare, sought to remedy the vast problem of poverty and health issues.
The unfortunate truth is that the men, women, and children who are poor and often relegated to the back alleys of our society are the ones likely to need this law. Some Milton students come from very sheltered backgrounds—my neighborhood, for example, has a little over 4,000 people, and an average of 1.4 violent crimes are committed annually. However, poorer neighborhoods result in higher-risk environments. For example, Lowell, MA, had numerous murders, assaults, arsons, etc. within the past few years. The more fortunate in America need to pick up the slack of our countrymen—it is time to shoulder the extra cost necessary to support those less fortunate than we.
However, Obamacare does not sell health insurance; it creates a market for subsidized, privatized health insurance so that the disadvantaged can receive and be able to pay for modern medicine. While excellent in theory, in implementation, Obamacare is atrocious. Republicans and Democrats, in fact, have no idea what they’ve voted for. Take, for example, the US Constitution, which is 4,440 words long. The Civil Rights Act of 1964, which forbade racial discrimination, is only approximately 3,760 words long. Obamacare currently is 381,517 words long. The regulations that dictate who qualifies for Obamacare? 11,588,500 words long. In total, the package of Obamacare legislation is roughly 2,696 times as long as our Constitution. How can anyone expect our lawmakers to fully understand what they’re reading, let alone their constituents?
The answer is, they can’t. Democratic Minority leader Representative Nancy Pelosi told the House that they needed “to pass [Obamacare] so that you can find out what is in it…”
Not only is the core essence of the legislation incomprehensible to people other than trained lawyers with too much time on their hands, but the digital infrastructure of Obamacare has come up short. In a speech defending Obamacare, Mr. Obama directly cited a Delaware woman who had signed up for Obamacare, stating, “So you just heard Janice’s story. She owns her own small business. She recently became the first woman to enroll in coverage through Delaware’s exchange. And it’s true. It took her a few tries. But it was worth it…” A bystander might think it’s strange that the supposed Leader of the Free World, the President of the United States, the Commander-in-Chief of American Armed Forces cited a participant in the Affordable Care Act. In reality, it was not hard to mention this woman by name; NPR reported on the 1st of November that only 248 people had enrolled in Obamacare. On the first day of Obamacare’s release, only 6 people had signed up. This is a federal program that is supposed to service all 313,900,000 Americans. You don’t need to be a genius to realize 6 people is a abominably low.
As of October 25th, 700,000 people had attempted to enroll in Obamacare, according to the US Department of Health and Human Services. These enrollment numbers would be excellent—a complete success—if the US had the population of Fiji. President Obama has still denied over 99% of Americans access to his flagship reform. Given a résumé of Mr. Obama’s reforms and actions over his Presidency, one is presented with three categories: Foreign Policy, Economic Policy, and Environmental Policy. The first category boasts impressive achievements: the withdrawal from Iraq, the ongoing withdrawal from Afghanistan, the liberation of Libya, and the assassination of Osama bin Laden. His economic policy is of a lesser caliber: it has seen the increase of debt, budget deficit, trade deficit, and multiple governmental issues, including the shutdown of the government for 16 days. Finally, his achievements in environmental policy are the most lackluster. He has done nothing but push the issue of healthcare. Yet now, in the final hour, he has failed.
Milton students cannot see the forest for the trees. In talking with some of my classmates, some are blinded by their love for Mr. Obama, and do not realize the extent to which he has failed. It takes simple research to discover statistics that shake the faith of any rational person. In theory, he has done everything to improve the quality of life in America; in practice, he has done nothing. Mr. Obama’s system is broken. It is a shattered mirror that reflects back to us a troubled future.
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