If you’re looking for an enlightened debate on the merits of Obamacare and its place in the shutdown debate, do NOT look here. If, however, you are the kind who enjoys watching Paul Krugman school Bill Kristol on the GOP ignorance of Obamacare and Kristol struggle in talking-points hell, tune into ABC’s This Week roundtable. You are definitely in the right place.
Herewith some highlights:
KRUGMAN: It’s a good thing. It happens in fact to be a very good law. One of the things I think that’s going on here is just a failure on the part of the Republican caucus to actually understand anything about this thing. That they, you know, not they, they haven’t done the policy. They haven’t understood.
In fact almost all of the substantive news about Obamacare over the last couple of months has been good. The premiums are coming in well below expectations. Healthcare costs are moderating. Probably there will be some technical glitches with computer systems. But those are not fundamental. So actually people who support this law are looking forward, they’re actually almost hearing, I think, the preliminary results.
So the odds are that this is going to do a lot of good for a lot of people. Why not put it into effect now?
KRISTOL: Should the president delay the employer mandate?
KRUGMAN: The employer mandate was–
KRISTOL: Wait should he? Yes or no?
KRUGMAN: Yeah actually because–
KRISTOL: But not the individual mandate.
KRUGMAN: They are completely different–
KRISTOL: Business gets the delay but individuals don’t.
KRUGMAN: That’s what I’m talking about, this policy ignorance. Not understanding. That the employer mandate is basically a trivial add-on to the law. While the individual mandate is essential to that. You don’t understand that. You don’t understand–