The latest figures on enrollment in the health care exchange here in Wisconsin are creating all-out panic on the Left. It turns out that younger, healthier Wisconsinites--upon whom the pyramid scheme of the Affordable Health Care Act is built--are staying away from signing up for policies in droves. Wisconsin and West Virginia have the highest rates of older enrollees--meaning higher costs for the insurers, and ever increasing premiums for the policies in the exchanges--a phenomenon known as the "Death Spiral".
Our friends at Citizen Action of Wisconsin--one of the loudest champions of the ACA in the state--sent out a panicked press release yesterday claiming that not enough young people forking over their money should "raise alarm bells". (Never mind that Conservatives sounded those same alarm bells five years ago when we started finding out "what was in the bill" after it was passed--that younger consumers were likely not going to go along with being nothing but a funding source for the entire structure--but we were just being "naysayers" back then) And who does Citzen Action blame for the lack of action from the 20 and 30-somethings? Of course, Governor Scott Walker.
According to Citizen Action, the ONLY reason young Wisconsinites aren't flocking to the exchange website is because Republicans are refusing to spend millions of dollars on marketing campaigns to tell them about it. Higher-than-they-want-to-pay premiums, being able to ride on their parents coverage until they are 26, the loss of their doctor, or the simple fact that they don't have the money to pay upfront are in NO WAY keeping people from enrolling for coverage. If only someone would be spending taxpayer money to tell them that something that is REQUIRED BY LAW TO PURCHASE is so great for them, those ignorant....we mean uninformed...or rather disenfranchised people would be knocking down the doors to get their coverage.
As someone who works in a marketing-based industry, I would recommend that if Citizen Action wants to effectively get the message out that they find out where all of these "uninsured" young folks are--and figure out the media best suited to reaching them with the taxpayer-funded campaign they desire. Since they seem to have no idea that they are REQUIRED BY LAW TO PURCHASE HEALTH INSURANCE they obviously aren't listening to News/Talk Radio, watching any of the cable news channels or logging on to any news websites. Maybe the money should be spent to have Beyonce and Macklemore slip "buy health insurance, bro" into the lyrics of their new hit singles.
Or we can just admit that the economic model upon which the Affordable Care Act is based was doomed from the start. Then we can pass on the million dollar advertising campaigns and let the people who will be riding the Death Spiral down use the money to pay for their inflated premiums instead.