Can We Start Talking About Gutting The Affordable Care Act?

Until the Progressives are willing to perform a seppuku on the Affordable Care Act, health care reform will be stuck on stupid. I hate to be brutally honest but there is not much left to gut when you look at all of parts of the Affordable Care Act that have been delayed. Since the Democrats wrote the bill by themselves, they own the Affordable Care Act problems and gutting the bill is preferable over a long prolonged death.  When the smarter half of the Democratic party drew that imaginary line in the sand, they were of the opinion that health care reform cannot not succeed unless we get a majority of the states to set up health exchanges. For both political and governing reasons this form of co-operative federalism depends on states being willing  participants. Without a majority of the states participating via state exchanges the backup plan of a federal exchange would transform the law  into a plain old federal power grab built on the shifting sands of administrative law rulings. This smarter half probably viewed the federal exchange scenario as a recipe for political and governmental disaster and extremely hazardous to their re-election. Unfortunately they were proven right. The roll-out was a grim reminder that our federal bureaucrats are not as competent as we thought and if you want to create a really big problem, the first step is to make it a federal program. The problem we are faced with now is that we are ignoring our past mistakes. Ms. Greenhouse in her article, “By Any Means Necessary”, seems to think that we can safely ignore the legal problems and the lack of political consensus. In a way she is advocating the idea that laws do not matter if it impedes the society’s greater goal, health care reform. This is what I call the “even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in a while” management style or otherwise known as management by accident. This is the evil twin of the more successful management style employed by businesses called management by objective. The management by accident approach is based on the hope that if we have enough people stumbling around trying to fix things they think might be wrong then we will eventually fix all of the Affordable Care problems regardless of how badly the law was written or administered. All we need is money, people, and lots of patience with government failures. This might be an acceptable solution in the federal bureaucratic universe but it reminds me why the roll-out was such a miserable failure and why my insurance premium continues to go up despite promises otherwise. It should be amusing to see who gets the blame if the number of uninsured returns to historical norms this Fall. This is the Progressive’s proudest Affordable Care Act achievement.  Will we be reminded once again that the Affordable Care Act was a health reform in name only? If this is the Progressive idea of health care reform then would someone  “wake me when it’s over.”