With Obamacare already on thin ice with the public, the problems at the VA are reinforcing the disadvantages of government-run health care. And if ACA proponents consoled themselves that the law was merely a step toward the “inevitable” single-payer system, the VA monopoly should not inspire hope. As noted elsewhere, one of the biggest costs of socialized medicine is always in the wait, a cost which is absent from official accounting reports.
The VA debacle is very bad news for the Obama Administration, not because it is their fault, though they have known about the fraudulent waiting lists for at least a year. Instead, for Obamacare, it is a public relations nightmare, as noted in this article: “Most Important Casualty of Veterans Affairs Scandal Could Be Obamacare.”
In another disturbing development, fit for an honored place in the pantheon of dumb government incentives, a new IRS ruling holds that employers who “dump” employees onto the federal exchanges will be fined up to $36,500 per year per employee! Granting the employee a raise to pay the premium will not gain the employer a dispensation. Only by firing the worker can they avoid the penalty. This is discussed here.
Here’s some commentary from the Onion that gets right to the heart of the VA problem: VA To Improve Veterans’ Health Care With New $500 Million Waiting Room. See the photo above for The Onion artist’s rendering of the new VA waiting room.