Megan McArdle published a letter from a pastor:
I work with what I’d call median Americans. … Everything that I’ve seen about the ACA and its implementation seems completely divorced from how say 35%+ of these median Americans function on a daily basis. The ACA and every wonk assumes rational people who can make good financial decisions. Instead what you have is people with $100K of school debt because it compounded when they stopped paying it, who are leasing a new car, who have an interest only mortgage (or a HELOC to help them pay the original mortgage), who have at least 3 credit cards maxed, maintain a pay-day loan they got scammed into, and yet find cable with HBO and an iPhone 5 with all you can eat plan necessities. … But this is what the ACA mandate and cost is going to mean to many of these people: do I keep HBO & Cable, my iPhone, or buy medical insurance? Which bill that I already have must be done without? They will refuse to even think about that.
On top of that, if they recognize Obamacare at all what they think it means is “universal free health care” with emphasis on the free. When you try and say that it will cost them at least 4% of their income, they go directly into denial.
What I’m saying is that for a large minority of people opting out of the ACA probably won’t even be a conscious choice. It will just happen because of the complexity, the upfront sticker cost and the lack of ability to make good financial decisions. They will deal with it later when they file taxes which won’t be until September, because when their tax guy tells them they won’t get the refund they were expecting, they will file the automatic deferral to “put it off” for a little while. … They have no idea how bad this is going to be.
I concur: this is pretty much the disposition of the students from other majors who take my classes for Gen Ed credit.