The only way that the Affordable Care Law will work is when it is fully enforced. Citizens, even those who benefit from the law the most, will not voluntarily act at a sufficient rate until and unless the incentive is clear along with negative reinforcement from the mandate.
If 37-50 million uninsured people were excited about their new found benefit, the enrollment rate might be more at 80% than the paltry 5%.
By comparison, think about the problem of homeless persons in America.
“The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development in January 2012 annual point-in-time count found that 633,782 people across America were homeless. With 2007 as a benchmark, the data from the report showed a 6.8 percent decline in homelessness among individuals, a 3.7 percent decline of homeless families, a 13.1 percent decline of the unsheltered homeless population, and a 19.3 percent decline in persons experiencing chronic homelessness. During the overall count, 62,619 veterans were found homeless nationwide.”
If there are 633, 782 homeless persons in America of which about 10% are veterans, what are the causes? Some people will not accept help because they are mentally incapacitated, too proud, helpless and hopeless.
“The major causes of homelessness include:
- The deinstitutionalization movement from the 1950s onwards in state mental health systems, to shift towards 'community-based' treatment of the mentally ill, as opposed to long-term commitment in institutions.
- Redevelopment and gentrification activities instituted by cities across the country through which low-income neighborhoods are declared blighted and demolished to make way for projects that generate higher property taxes and other revenue, creating a shortage of housing affordable to low-income working families, the elderly poor, and the disabled.
- The failure of urban housing projects to provide safe, secure, and affordable housing to the poor.
- The economic crises and "stagflation" of the 1970s, which caused high unemployment. Unlike European countries, US unemployment insurance does not allow unemployed insurance recipients to obtain job training/education while receiving benefits except under very limited situations.
- The failure of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to provide effective mental health care and meaningful job training for many homeless veterans, particularly those of the Vietnam War.
- Deprived of normal childhoods, nearly half of foster children in the United States become homeless when they are released from foster care at age 18.
- Natural disasters that destroy homes: hurricanes, floods, earthquakes, etc. Places of employment are often destroyed too, causing unemployment and transience.
- People who have served time in prison, have abused drugs and alcohol, or have a history of mental illness find it difficult to impossible to find employment for years at a time because of the use of computer background checks by potential employers.
- According to the Institution of Housing in 2005, the U.S. Government has focused 42% more on foreign countries rather than homeless Americans, including homeless veterans.
- People who are hiding in order to evade law enforcement.
- Adults and children who flee domestic violence.
- Teenagers who flee or are thrown out by parents who disapprove of their child's sexual orientation or gender identity. A 2010 study by the left wing Center for American Progress shows that a disproportionately high number of homeless youth (between 20–40%) identify as LGBTQ.
- Overly complex building code that makes it difficult for most people to build. Traditional huts, cars, and tents are illegal, classified as substandard and may be removed by government, even though the occupant may own the land. Land owner cannot live on the land cheaply, and so sells the land and becomes homeless.
- Foreclosures of homes (properties)
- Evictions from apartments
- Lack of support from friends or family
- Lack of resources in place in the communities to help aid in prevention of homelessness before it becomes a crisis.”
“Health-insurance sign-ups on U.S. exchange top 1.1 million in initial enrollment period
By Juliet Eilperin and Sarah Kliff, Published: December 29
More than 1.1 million Americans signed up for an insurance plan through the federal health-care marketplace during its initial enrollment period, with more than 975,000 enrolling in December alone, the Obama administration announced Sunday.
The new figures, which came as the administration reworked its computer system to extend the deadline for an extra day, until midnight on Dec. 24, suggest that federal officials are making up some ground after glitches and processing errors made HealthCare.gov difficult to access and navigate during its first two months of operation.