The federal Consumer Operated and Oriented Plan (CO-OP) program should be getting more attention than it does.
On the one hand, the fact that LifeHealthPro lets reporters write columns causes obvious problems. When I’m wearing my reporter hat, I want to be perfectly non-partisan and perfectly logical. Mr. Spock with a notebook.
When I’m a columnist, I suddenly have to reveal what everyone knew all along: That, of course, Mr. Spock was a seething cauldron of emotions and that, of course, I’m a seething cauldron of opinions. The real best reason for reporters not to reveal all of their opinions is not because reporters have to be so perfectly unopinionated, or because anyone is fooled by reporters pretending not to have opinions, but, because, really, why would anyone care what opinion the typical reporter has?
Reporters are, in ideal circumstances, experts at digging the good quotes out of a pile of boring quotes, not at health policy.
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On the other hand: The CO-OP program — an outgrowth of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (PPACA) — seems an awful lot wackier than the PPACA individual health insurance ownership mandate or the health insurance exchanges.
States, private companies and other organizations have been setting up insurance exchanges for years. The worst thing that’s happened is that the exchanges haven’t worked very well.
The individual health insurance mandate may or may not violate the federal constitution, but, whether it does or doesn’t, state insurance mandates don’t seem to violate state constitutions. State individual insurance mandates don’t seem to have sent states like Massachusetts hurling rapidly down a path to Stalinist tyranny.