Conservatives Deploy Creepy Uncle Sam Gynecologist To Scare Young Women Off Obamacare

A blog about business and economics.
Sept. 19 2013 9:35 AM

Here's How Conservatives Plan On Scaring Young Women Off Obamacare

Koch brothers
A Tea-Party supporter protests Obamacare.

Photo by Mladen Antonov/AFP/Getty Images

The Affordable Care Act's exchanges designed to provide health insurance to currently uninsured Americans will only work if a relatively large number of relatively young and relatively healthy people participate in them. So a key conservative goal at the moment is to persuade young people to boycott the exchanges and stay uninsured. Chris Moody at Yahoo reports on one of the groups leading the boycott charge, Generation Opportuniy, an organization funded by the legendarily youthful Charles and David Koch who have nothing but the best interests of younger Americans at heart.

They're launching a tour of 20 college campuses this year to try to persuade people that it's better to have no health insurance than to participate in Obamacare. The plan of persuasion includes this advertisement showing that under Obamacare, Uncle Sam is going to be inspecting your vagina:

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The advertisement, I think, underscores the conceptual problem with the boycott movement. I'm not the world's leading expert in the field but (perhaps unlike conservative movement leaders), I have spoken to young women in my life. And in my experience they already regard gynecological exams as a not-exactly-awesome way to spend the afternoon. They're not light entertainment, they're medically necessary health care. And yet if you lack health insurance, you may not be able to afford the health care you need. That's really bad.

Conservatives need to persuade people not just that Obamacare plans are inferior to some hypothetical amazing health insurance plan that some other, much more prosperous people have, but actually worse than having no health insurance at all. That's a really hard sell unless you come to the table with a strong ideological predisposition pointing in that direction.

Matthew Yglesias is the executive editor of Vox and author of The Rent Is Too Damn High.

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