One more way in which the Obama administration takes after its predecessor: Vice-presidential F-bombs (and no, I don't mean "frak"). Joe Biden dropped a live one at the health care signing ceremony this morning, and the microphones caught it. Whoops! Does the FCC know?
Let's hope the federal censors give him a break, though, because he's absolutely right. ObamaCare may not be an instant-catastrophe in the making, but it is a big, four-letter-word deal. Here are just some of the reasons why:
- It will impose a federal mandate requiring all individuals to either purchase health insurance from a private company or pay a fine—a mandate that the Congressional Budget Office has described as "an unprecedented form of federal action" that most closely resembles the military draft.
- It is estimated by the CBO to directly cost the federal government at least $940 billion dollars over its first ten years, and more like $1.8 trillion if you start the count when the majority of the benefits actually kick in.
- It will impose additional private-sector spending mandates estimated to add in the range of $1.5 trillion to the total cost.
- It will, according to the CBO, result in an estimated 8-9 million people "who would be covered by an employment-based plan under current law [not having] an offer of such coverage."
- It will, according to Medicare's chief actuary, result in an estimated $234 billion in increased medical spending, making medical spending an even higher percentage of GDP than under current policy.
- It will, according to the CBO's projections, increase but not fund state Medicaid and CHIP spending by about $20 billion.
- And it will probably raise the deficit while using up the easiest potential sources of entitlement reform and deficit reduction.
So yeah, I'd say it's a big, fat, F-word appropriate deal: The only question now is who's getting fucked by it.