Jewish World Review August 17, 2011 / 17 Menachem-Av, 5771
Why Obamacare won't control births
By Jay Ambrose
http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | If you care about Obamacare, you have to care about all its possible inflictions, many of which were unknown when the 2,500-page act was passed amidst Democratic horror at opposing Republicans said to hate the sick and want them dead.
More mildly, the Republicans contended the disclosed parts of the bill would increase the debt, turn more of the economy over to clumsy, harmful government intervention, mangle health care while hiking its costs, raise taxes, abridge the Constitution and increase joblessness through employer fears of outlays and complications to come.
Also worrisome, some would say, were the bits and pieces that might emerge. We’ve just learned of a new one. Within a year, the law will require health insurance companies to provide contraceptives free of any co-pay.
Sounds good, right? I mean, distinguished investigators said the provision will prevent millions of unwanted pregnancies, saving money and making everyone happy. Watch out, however, because the facts do not get you from here to there. What’s more, the underlying premise is that intrusive, all-wise government is a perfect substitute for common sense and self-responsibility, and, as history has proved repeatedly, it’s not. This new provision is a brainchild that should never have been conceived. Understand, first off, that the chief change of this particular provision is elimination of any co-payments, which will do nothing to increase contraceptive use. State regulators and courts long ago mandated that insurance companies provide birth control coverage to anyone in need, as the Associated Press reminds us. And, a federally sponsored study shows, just about everyone who has any chance of getting pregnant already purchases or otherwise obtains contraceptives.
Condoms these days can pretty much be had for the asking, depending on where you ask. The insurance co-pay on generic birth control pills is reported to be $5 to $15 monthly, but some generics can be had for $9 a month even without insurance. Intrauterine devices can be purchased for as low as $175 and last for as long as 12 years ($14.58 a year, or not much more than $1 a month). Medicaid takes care of the impoverished.
Don’t forget that, in addition to modernity’s technological breakthroughs, nature long ago provided means to avoid bringing babies into the world, if that’s your wish — the rhythm method for women with regular menstrual cycles and the withdrawal method (coitus interruptus), which is, to be sure, an imperfect methodology. Abstinence is free and a perfect methodology — teenagers ought to give it a try.
So with all of this available, why any unwanted pregnancies? Mainly, varied accounts tell us, it’s carelessness, as in not taking that pill when you’re supposed to, and carelessness does not go away with the elimination of copayment assistance, as you would think even a distinguished investigator would deduce.
What will happen instead is that everyone with health insurance will get stuck with still more premium boosts, including those just making ends meet, and every woman in need will be eligible for the benefits, including those with millions and billions. Isn’t it interesting about liberals? They want to tax the rich to penury even as they extend welfare to them — maybe because they think they will achieve their penury wish?
You figure it out.
The political style has consequences for one and all. President Barack Obama pledged that Obamacare would lower health premiums annually by $2,500. An expert’s article on this also underlined that the Congressional Budget Office said Obamacare would actually raise annual premiums by $2,100 a year.
There is one thing to be grateful for, namely that we don’t have bedroom bureaucrats paid to tap you on the shoulder at inconvenient moments to find out if sufficient precautions have been taken. But don’t be too sure this innovation will never come our way. There are still distinguished investigators out there and still more bits and pieces of Obamacare to get revealed.
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Jay Ambrose, formerly Washington director of editorial policy for Scripps Howard newspapers and the editor of dailies in El Paso, Texas, and Denver, is a columnist living in Colorado.
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