Krauthammer's Take [NRO Staff]
On the Reid health-care bill:
Where do you start? This is a really unbelievable bill.
Because the provisions that the CBO looked at are so jiggered, even though CBO's numbers are real, it's about an unreal assumption.
If you start with 2015, which is essentially where the benefits start, and you go into the future, every ten years you will have a plan that is not [costing] $800 billion. It will be [costing] $1.5 trillion. Which means that except for the early years — in which there are no benefits paid out and a lot of taxes paid in — you're going to have a huge net deficit which will probably be around half a trillion every decade.
Secondly, even if you had the revenue neutrality, which you won't, everybody assumes: Well, that is going to help us economically. In fact, to achieve revenue neutrality, you have to increase taxes, and you're going to have to have spending cuts.
Those increases in taxes, and cuts in spending, are now not available in reducing the other deficits outside of health care which are going to amount to $9 trillion over the next decade.
So you create a new entitlement, you support it with new taxes and spending cuts which you cannot now use in reducing the outside — the other — deficits, which are destroying the dollar and the federal budget.
… Of all the ways in which you can raise revenue, in the Reid bill it's done with raising the payroll tax in the middle of a recession with over 10 percent unemployment — exactly at a time when you want to encourage employment and lower the payroll tax. It's perverse.