ObamaCare critics fearful of the federal government controlling one-sixth of the nation’s economy and the resulting loss of freedom have missed both the most serious threat to freedom and its likeliest victims. Obamacare stands to turn millions of our neighbors into criminals. That’s because seeking a subsidy in order to obey the mandate of — never mind afford — the Affordable Care Act (“ACA,” but referred universally as Obamacare) 1 can easily put our most economically and educationally vulnerable fellow citizens on a path to jail. If this be compassion, it is true only in the same sense that euthanasia fulfills the definition.
The dreaded individual mandate 2 is the root of the problem, because complying with PPACA requires everyone (with narrow exceptions for undocumented aliens and certain religious objectors) to buy and keep a compliant health insurance policy. The mandatory and significant costs of even the cheapest Obamacare-compliant plan premiums first raise an affordability concern, but the premiums are no longer a discretionary expense. Insurance premiums now must be paid before truly essential but not mandated expenses like rent or food, indeed before any other expense! The financial pressure on low and middle-income Americans is obvious — at least if you are law-abiding. The PPACA will reduce disposable income, coerce a recalibration of priorities of expenditures and induce economic stress on middle-class and low-income Americans. The “trap,” as I call it, is the allure of government subsidies for people based on income…….Read More