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A picture is worth a thousand blog posts

And Igor Volsky has a picture:

Choices.JPG

By Ezra Klein  |  December 21, 2009; 5:33 PM ET
 
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Comments

I know you didn't create this image, but it's a bit misleading in several ways. For example, the big red up arrow showing that the deficit will continue to rise without HCR and then the big blue down arrow showing that the deficit will be reduced by $132 million - well, the deficit will be reduced $132 million *relative to the deficit without HCR*. The deficit is surely still rising, just not as much.

Or, for example, there is a little sad man in 2017 on the left side when Medicare becomes insolvent, but no corresponding little sad man in 2027 on the right side when Medicare goes insolvent.

I support passing HCR and think it'll do a lot of good, but this is an example of a terrible graph that is trying to manipulate its audience rather than accurately present data.

Posted by: madjoy | December 21, 2009 5:56 PM | Report abuse

I agree with madjoy that the last two sections have a fair amount of spin on them, but compared to the borderline misinformation Jane Hamsher et al are now regularly cranking out, it barely notes a mention.

Posted by: Chris_O | December 21, 2009 6:19 PM | Report abuse

Has the CBO or other group listed the reasons why those 23 million will be without coverage? Are they choosing to not buy in and paying penalties, or can they just not afford it? I'm assuming it's because the 2% of income penalty is cheaper than the 8% of income cap on coverage, so these people are choosing not to sign up.

Posted by: kmani1 | December 21, 2009 6:42 PM | Report abuse

To a Republican, this doesn't matter. The truth or facts don't matter at all. And that's why we ended up in Iraq, failed spectacularly in Afghanistan and have been in a recession for 2 yrs before President Bush acknowledged we were in one. And the facts didn't matter when Bush kept denying we had a foreclosure problem, or when McCain was saying the fundamentals of the economy was strong while the world was falling apart. The facts don't matter at all.

Posted by: ATLGuy | December 21, 2009 7:57 PM | Report abuse

Let's see... the above chart has "a fair amount of spin" but Jane Hamsher is cranking out "borderline misinformation."

Really Chris_O? Where is Jane's chart that even comes close to this level of blatant propaganda. Podesta pays Volsky to crank this stuff out for the power elite. Who pays Jane? No one. She's fighting to make the bill better. She's fighting to keep the progressive movement from destroying its credibility by co-signing this BS reform. And she's doing it all for free.

Posted by: bmull | December 21, 2009 8:00 PM | Report abuse

Ezra rocks!!!

Posted by: ATLGuy | December 21, 2009 8:00 PM | Report abuse

Jane rocks more!!!!

Posted by: bmull | December 21, 2009 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Your charts are very nice. But the new GOP talking points for the next 12 months will be the list Hamsher has on her blog. Whether the bill is pass or fail, this is what we'll be hearing on every newscast. Over and over and over. Till the next elections, which the Dems will spectacularly lose. The biggest loser will be Obama. I agree with Jane, kill it, burn it, shred it.

Posted by: lanceC | December 21, 2009 9:25 PM | Report abuse

Just a clarification. A"senior" is someone 65 or older, and on Medicare. So, point #3 is off. Those who will pay 3x as much are in the 55-65 age bracket, hardly seniors. This IS spin, because those of you in 25-35 age bracket will be paying more (where's the graphic for that?) unless you're low income.

Posted by: Beagle1 | December 21, 2009 10:17 PM | Report abuse

Spin these charts anyway you want to, but, the reform travesty will not reduce the budget deficit. When has the federal government actually cut any thing except the cash from the taxpapers pockets? The is pure fantasy! And anyone with a little commons sense can see that. This bill is all about making a weak, poor president look good...and it even fails on that point. 2010...Without Doubt, Vote Them Out!!

Posted by: my4653 | December 21, 2009 11:19 PM | Report abuse

Sigh. Ezra, you should include spaces for how much money insurance companies will receive both with and without this bill, and you should include a space for how much money of this money insurance companies will receive from taxpayers both with and without this bill.

Please, try to be objective and present both pros and cons.

Posted by: ScentOfViolets | December 21, 2009 11:35 PM | Report abuse

If there's a man to woman ratio of 1 to 1 (somewhere around there), and the insurance industry charges women 48% more than men, it means that for every policy that they charge... let's say $10, there's one that they get to charge $14.8. That's an avg. of $12.4 per policy. If there's anyone out there, that truly belives the industry's going to drop the price of their avg. policy almost 20%, I can tell that person that walmart has great variety on lollipops and other suckers.

We must expect them to compensate for that loss (restriction) by simply charging men more. In other words $12.8 for the policies of men and women (if we're lucky. It could be $14.8 each).

This is the way in which all of those restrictions are going to be dealt with... It's just a sharade

Posted by: jamiesola | December 21, 2009 11:52 PM | Report abuse

Some of the figures in the right column seem highly dubious, such as $10,133 for persons receiving insurance through the exchanges. I suppose the twenty-three million not having health care coverage in ten years are considered expendable by the neo-reformers.

Many adults will be denied coverage due to preexisting conditions until 2013 or 2014. The budgets will be reduced by exactly $132 billion over ten years, come on, with three trillion dollar plus federal budgets, does anyone, except the true believers, trust such numbers?

Seniors paying eleven times as much, where do these figures come from? Somehow I doubt persons in their early sixties pay eleven times as much for health care insurance than those in their twenties.

How about a new chart.

Number uninsured with pseudo-reform 23,000,000

Number insured with real reform 0.

The Obama apologists never tried to achieve the second. So much for change most people can believe in.

Posted by: Aprogressiveindependent | December 22, 2009 1:22 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, I am not a great typist and need to preview my comments more carefully. I meant to write number uninsured with real reform 0.

Posted by: Aprogressiveindependent | December 22, 2009 1:25 AM | Report abuse

Pass the bill.

Consolidate the important progress to date.

Keep the Sarah Palin types out of office in 2010 and 2012.

Keep on tweaking health care each year.

Posted by: Lomillialor | December 22, 2009 3:33 AM | Report abuse

Great Chart.

However, you didn't compare LIBERTY.

Does this reform bill increase or decrease individual LIBERTY?

Is that important to Democrats anymore?

Posted by: WrongfulDeath | December 22, 2009 8:07 AM | Report abuse

1. Presumably the 11x for "seniors" and the 1.48x for women are the equilibrium price levels.

2. The government is mandating different prices for those groups.

3. This is going to be interesting.

Posted by: ostap666 | December 22, 2009 10:07 AM | Report abuse

The CBO says the Democrats are double counting the Medicare savings by saying it extends the solvency of the trust fund and also finances new spending.

http://cboblog.cbo.gov/?p=448

Posted by: ab13 | December 23, 2009 5:11 PM | Report abuse

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