ObamaCare’s impact on health costs.

Evidence of a significant free-rider problem in Massachusetts may be a harbinger of things to come under Obamacare.

The culture of Washington doesn’t like to admit mistakes and, if necessary, to correct them — and Obamacare is one giant mistake in need of correction via repeal.

The truly effective way to lower health-care costs — and to increase fairness at the same time — is to allow all Americans to deduct their full health-care costs (not just their insurance costs) from both their income and payroll taxes, thereby leveling the playing field between those with employer-provided insurance (whose taxes wouldn’t change) and those who purchase insurance on the open market (who would no longer be the only ones taxed on income used to purchase health care).  Not only would this actually bring down health costs — while ObamaCare would raise them — without increasing the size or reach of the federal government — while ObamaCare would increase these dramatically — but it would foster adult self-reliance and self-respect, not childlike dependence encouraged by a paternalistic government.

“The president and his team understood early on that they could not pass a sweeping health care bill without promising those with good insurance that, at a minimum, their coverage wouldn’t be harmed and their costs would not go up. Despite the relentless sales pitch, there was always a lot of skepticism among voters that such a government-heavy plan would leave them alone and be cost-free. Now, of course, their skepticism is being validated. Yes, the bill has passed. But a price will be paid for muscling it through to passage based on promises that are being broken just a few months after enactment.”

“Experts say the new regulations make holding costs down even more of a Sisyphean challenge for small businesses: If they make changes in their current plans to save money, they risk losing their grandfathered status and will be forced to comply with new mandates that are expected to increase costs.”

“One of the main arguments for both RomneyCare (the health care law Massachusetts enacted in 2006) and ObamaCare (the federal law enacted in March of this year) is that once the government mandates that everyone purchase health insurance, premiums will fall due to broader pooling. A new study published by the Forum for Health Economics & Policy suggests the opposite.”

Empowering patients with consumer-driven health care is a proven way to reduce the growth in medical costs. ObamaCare empowers government agencies and insurance companies instead of consumers by restricting the ability and of patients to take ownership of their health care decisions. “Rising health care costs represent the largest threat to the nation’s fiscal solvency, and unfortunately, Obamacare does little to change that. But empowering consumers can cut costs.”

A recent study shows approximately $1.2 billion in annual excess costs to the auto insurance industry from cost shifting due to low reimbursement rates from government-run health programs. Thus ObamaCare’s $500 billion in cuts to Medicare payments could lead not only to greater cost-shifting and higher costs for other Americans’ health care, but also to higher costs for auto insurance.

Democrats officially titled ObamaCare the “Affordable Care Act,” but medical costs for Americans are guaranteed to continue to rise. The weak measures to control costs don’t begin for years, but the new regulations, taxes, and mandates will start much sooner. “What makes Democrats more immediately vulnerable is what’s going to happen to people’s health insurance costs next year. They’re going up. At least that’s the finding of a new report from the consulting group PricewaterhouseCoopers.”