People With Obamacare Will Still Go Broke

By: Thursday December 5, 2013 10:54 am

President Obama promise “if you like your insurance you can keep it” has generated a lot of attention lately, but long-term the failure of an even more oft-repeated promise will be more important. Obama has frequently implied using the Affordable Care Act will stop people from going broke if they get sick, even though this [...]

Decades of Evidence Subsidies Alone Should be Sufficient to Encourage Enrollment

By: Thursday June 21, 2012 9:51 am

One of the big questions about the possible Supreme Court ruling on the Affordable Care Act is what would happen if only the individual mandate is struck down, but the rest of the law is left in place. Mainly, is simply providing subsidies enough to encourage new people to buy insurance? Sarah Kliff at Wonkblog [...]

More Health Care Cost Control Nonsense From Jon Gruber

By: Wednesday May 30, 2012 10:53 am

M.I.T. Economist Jonathan Gruber continues to leave people radically less informed about the real health care cost issue in this country with public statements that frankly make no sense. The latest example is from a Washington Post article about Massachusetts’ attempts to control health care cost. “Cost control isn’t easy,” said M.I.T. economist Jon Gruber, [...]

Regular People Not “Experts” Are Right About Health Care Cost Problem

By: Monday October 24, 2011 9:23 am

A poll of Massachusetts residents by Harvard’s School of Public Health and the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation found that regular people in Massachusetts are remarkably well informed about the primary reasons their health care is so extremely expensive compared to health care in other industrialized countries. According to the poll regular people [...]

Global Payment So Far Fails to Control Health Care Costs in Massachusetts

By: Thursday June 23, 2011 12:43 pm

Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley has released a new report that indicates Gov. Deval Patrick’s goal of controlling health care cost by moving the state towards a global payment method is unlikely to produce real savings.

Private Insurers Fail at Keeping Prices Down in Massachusetts

By: Wednesday June 15, 2011 1:25 pm

Another problem for Romney-care. Even with an individual mandate private insurers in Massachusetts costs to consumers rise faster than public plans. How much more evidence do we need that single payer health care is the only affordable way to go?

Individual Mandate an Albetross Around Mitt Romney’s Neck

By: Tuesday May 31, 2011 9:59 am

The Boston Globe the have an interesting piece about how Massachusetts’ health care reform law came into being and the role Mitt Romney played in assure it’s passage. It is well worth a read. The article shows what a prominent role Romney played personally in making sure a individual mandate was part of the final legislation and why it would be impossible for him now to fully renounce the one in the Massachusetts’ law he signed. From the Boston Globe:

Romney’s grasp of the subject was “unbelievably impressive,’’ he said, and the governor warmed to the game-changing potential of the individual mandate. Romney’s political advisers, however, “were not that keen on it,’’ [Jonathan] Gruber said.

To them, the political hazards spoke louder than the policy-making opportunity.

The key players in the Massachusetts debate know what a critical champion Romney was of the individual mandate; so a total flip flop on the issue would be too deeply cynical as to be politically unfeasible

The article again made it clear how many of the most important components of the Massachusetts law, which also eventually made it into the Affordable Care Act, were only a few years ago seen as deep conservative policies advanced by right wing think tanks.

Massive Hospital Price Variations: Only in America (*Except Maryland)

By: Thursday May 26, 2011 1:17 pm

Massachusetts is still struggling with controlling health care costs since it decided to embrace health care reform by just expanding our broken private insurance system to cover more people. A problem in Massachusetts, which is common around the country, is that there are huge variances in what is paid for the same procedure. From the [...]

What Romneycare Probably Can’t Tell Us About National Health Care Reform

By: Tuesday May 10, 2011 1:54 pm

Given the incredible structural similarity between the Massachusetts health care reform law signed by Mitt Romney and the new national Affordable Care Act signed by President Obama, the release of the annual physician workforce survey (PDF) from the Massachusetts Medical Society has generated a lot of attention. But I would caution everyone involved that on [...]

Declining Home Values, the Massachusetts Vote and the “Gathering Storm”

By: Wednesday April 14, 2010 9:12 am

Thomas Ferguson is a professor of politics and economics at University of Massachusetts at Boston. The author of the “Investment Theory of Party Competition,” he believes that business elites, not voters, are the dominant force in political systems. Together with Joi Chen, he has released an analysis of the Brown/Coakley election, and concludes that the [...]