Today’s WSJ shows why nobody should believe the claims of health care “reform” advocates stating that their (latest) plan will somehow “save” $81 billion over the next ten years.
Washington has just run a $1.4 trillion budget deficit for fiscal 2009, even as we are told a new health-care entitlement will reduce red ink by $81 billion over 10 years. To believe that fantastic claim, you have to ignore everything we know about Washington and the history of government health-care programs. For the record, we decided to take a look at how previous federal forecasts matched what later happened. It isn’t pretty.
Some examples the WSJ cites include:
- Medicaid: estimates for its first year costs was $238 million; in reality that figure hit over $1 billion (nearly 5 times higher than estimates, in just the first year!)
- Medicare: when implemented in 1965, they projected the cost of the program in 1990 would reach $12 billion. Actual cost – $90 billion (7 1/2 times higher than estimates)
When it comes to government programs – especially those involving health care – the costs inevitably exceed original estimates by a long, long way. What makes anyone think this time will be any different?
Moreover, its alarming that many in the public continue to be fooled by the government’s bait and switch (i.e. promising a program that costs a certain amount and then delivering a program that costs much more). Imagine if a private business tried to operate like that, they’d be jailed. Why do we continue to give politicians a pass for such corrupt, deceitful practices?