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To summarize the chaos in the health insurance arena would take more column-inches than I devote to this space.  But let me touch on two lesser known consequences of the AffACAordable Care Act (Obamacare) that – regardless of your politics – will have you shaking your head…again.

Itemized Deductions – prior to 2014, the Jones’ could deduct medical expenses that exceeded 7.5% of their adjusted gross income.  So when Mom had foot surgery and ran up a $15,000 bill – she’d get a tax deduction of $7,500 if the family AGI was $100,000 (100,000 x 7.5% = $7,500.  $15,000 less $7,500 = a deduction of $7,500).  If the Jones’ were in the 30% tax bracket – that deduction would decrease their tax bill by $2,250.

But in 2014, the exemption threshold goes to 10% of AGI – reducing the Jones’ deduction, and adding $750 to the family income tax bill.  And this in a year when more than 80% of Americans (and certainly the Jones’ because of their income) are facing huge health insurance premium increases under the ACA.

Short Term Health Insurance – While short term health insurance has been around for decades, it’s been given new life under the ACA – and sales are through the roof.  Insurers will sell you an inexpensive,  “short-term” (less than one year – often 364 days) health insurance plan to those who are healthy.

Get sick while on the plan, forget about renewal – and forget about them paying expenses past the policy term.  No worry though – because the ACA will take you with pre-existing conditions and start paying right away.

Call it a loophole – but the ACA has given rise to an industry that insures the healthy – because the government plan will accept the sick.  But think of the long-term consequences.  Imagine how inexpensive car insurance would be if the insurer could cancel coverage the minute you wrecked the car.  Then – imagine how expensive the government plan would be if you could insure your wrecked car immediately – and get it fixed under the new – government plan?  It’s called “adverse selection” – and our government geniuses have just institutionalized it forever.

And to think – these are just two of the more mundane consequences of the ACA.  Eat your vegetables and stay healthy, my friend!