Politics & Policy

The 6 Worst Memes Obama Is Actually Using to Sell the Affordable Care Act

The push is on to enroll more young people.
Obamacare needs "young invincibles" because cats, ducks, YOLO

President Obama’s deadline — sorry, his firm-ish deadline — to sell Obamacare is almost upon us, and the president’s media push to recruit “young invincibles” (18- to 34-year-olds) continues with sixteen lame Internet memes posted on the White House’s website.

Obama’s previous efforts to recruit young people include meeting with one-time ‘N Sync shy one Lance Bass, starring in an episode of Between Two Ferns, and being interviewed on Ryan Seacrest’s radio show. These different media placements cost a whopping $52 million, according to Forbes’s Bruce Japsen.

The memes were originally put together around a March Madness theme. But now the Obamacare sales push — like some endless going-out-of-business sale at the world’s worst oriental-rug outlet — has been extended again. So you’ll be able to grok these presidential memes, at WhiteHouse.gov, for a long time to come . . .

1. “Women can’t be charged more than men”: The meme argues that women are arbitrarily charged more than men for their insurance. In fact, women in all age brackets consume far more health care than men: more than twice as much from ages 18 to 44, and 50 percent more from 45 to 64.

2. “Being uninsured is scary”: Except that it isn’t for most 18- to 34-year-olds. The Centers for Disease Control report that only 4.2 percent of adults ages 18 to 29 consider their health fair or poor — while 95.8 percent said their health is good, very good, or excellent.

3. “Birth control is free”: This isn’t necessarily true. Planned Parenthood’s website says that with the Affordable Care Act, ”some brands and methods of birth control are covered without co-pays and some aren’t.”

4. “Just one accident could mean huge medical bills that you can’t afford“: Healthy “young invincibles” currently save an average of $1,000 a year when they forgo insurance. When they need medical treatment, the uninsured spend an estimated $253, while the insured pay $517. 

5. “You might qualify for free or low-cost coverage”: The keyword here is “might,” and you certainly won’t if you’re young. The Affordable Care Act can charge older or unhealthy people only up to three times what the young and healthy pay. That’s great news if you are older or already sick, but it’s an increase of 200 percent or more if you are “young” and “invincible.”

6. “You only live once”: That’s just bad theology. 


— Joshua Encinias is an Agostinelli Fellow at National Review.

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