Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Why Isn't the Press Talking About Affordability--For "Ordinary Folks"?

I thought Trudy Lieberman hit the nail on the head in a post she did yesterday at the Columbia Journalism Review entitled, "Missing Persons--How Will Reform Affect Ordinary Folks." Here is a small part of it:
The media have talked about affordability mostly in the context of whether the country can afford reform, not whether individuals can afford it. It’s easier for a reporter to write about humongous numbers like $900 billion or $1 trillion, and give the arguments that those sums will or won’t add to the federal deficit, than it is to spend several hours with the Joneses in Peoria finding out where in the family budget they will find $8,000 to pay for health insurance. And the advocates—reform’s uber-cheerleaders—who see victory at hand aren’t terribly eager to point out that mandatory insurance might be unaffordable after all. Making that too transparent might undermine all the work they’ve done to advance legislation this far.
But what could be easier for a reporter than to write about the impact the current bills will have on a typical reader's checkbook?

Take a look at this chart and explain to me how a middle class family will be able to afford to purchase health insurance under either the Senate or House bills? This indicates the amount a family would be expected to pay for health insurance after any new federal premium subsidies:

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