Since the GOP released the details of its replacement for the Affordable Care Act earlier this week, the internet has been scrambling for new and inventive ways to mock its flaming pile of bureaucratic bullshit. But beneath the various memes and discussions of iPhone prices, there’s a real sense of anger and indignation surrounding this plan, which has been not-so-affectionately dubbed “Trumpcare” by some. Like most things people get angry about online, it’s safe to assume a percentage of them don’t even know what they’re angry about. Luckily, the good people at Vox have released one of their handy, cheerfully produced explainers to let you know exactly why you should be pissed off.
First, Vox Editor-In-Chief Ezra Klein notes that there is more of Obama’s 2010 healthcare plan left in this bill than one would have imagined, especially given the fact that the GOP has spent the last six years campaigning on the idea that Obamacare is the devil. Popular aspects of the ACA, such as being covered by your parent’s plan until you’re 26 and getting coverage for pre-existing conditions, will remain part of the GOP’s plan. However, the major changes to the bill have mostly to do with anything that incentivizes or assists people becoming involved in the healthcare system at all, particularly poor people.
Affordable healthcare under this (expensive) model really only works if enough healthy people are paying premiums for care they may not need right now in order to outweigh the expenses of sick people who need that care immediately. If you’re one of the lucky healthy people, you could consider this payment a being-decent-to-your-fellow-human tax. But Trumpcare gets rid of the individual mandate that incentivizes healthy people to join the healthcare pool and gets rid of subsidies for people based on income, making it even more difficult to join a system people a reluctant to join.
“[The Republicans] were trying so desperately to come up with something that would allow them to say they repealed and replaced Obamacare, that they’ve let ‘repeal and replace’ become, not just a political slogan, but a goal,” says Klein, adding that the GOP’s proposed plan is nothing more than “a worse version of Obamacare.” It’s almost as if creating a functional and affordable healthcare system for a country of 320 million people is really complicated and shouldn’t just be slapped together in a matter of weeks or fueled purely by spite.
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