Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Massachusetts Considering Mandatory Health Insurance

Massachusetts residents who choose not to obtain health insurance would face tax penalties and even the garnishing of their wages under a proposal Governor Mitt Romney unveiled yesterday.

Full Story

5 Comments:

At 5:02 PM, Blogger Lee Killough said...

"Mandatory insurance" is an oxymoron. It basically turns premiums into taxes.

It makes everyone pay for everyone else's health care except their own.

If health insurance were true insurance, you would pay according to your risk.

Under socialized health care, you pay no matter whether you get sick or not. So it transfers wealth from healthy patients to sick patients, punishing healthy patients for being well.

Some might differ, but I'd argue that it actually encourages sickness. Individuals differ in their preferences, but in general there is a strong human dislike for someone else benefiting off of your own losses, and people will do all sorts of things in response to it -- even getting "sick".

If I have to pay for your health care, and I would not normally have to pay that amount because I am healthy, then I am going to hate you for getting health care that I do not get.

Therefore I might become sick, if only to get my share of the pie. Besides prescription drug laws which force doctor visits, socialized medicine is, in my opinion, a major source of many of the so-called psychosomatic illnesses and mental illnesses.

If the costs of receiving care are not paid by those receiving it, then there is nothing to regulate demand for health care, not even the most trivial kind, and prices shoot way up, as they have over the years. And yet politicians want to keep putting more and more regulations on health care, as if this is going to solve it (which it won't).

 
At 5:27 PM, Blogger Mira de Vries said...


Canadian Supreme Court upholds right to take out private health insurance

 
At 5:35 PM, Blogger Lee Killough said...

I just noticed something in the article, which I neglected to include earlier (emphasis mine):

"Romney's plan would require all residents in Massachusetts to have some form of health insurance or agree to pay their medical bills out of their own pockets. No other state has such a requirement, and if Romney manages to make it law, it would be a compelling accomplishment he could point to if he runs for president."

I'm all for people paying their own bills out of their own pockets, but when you have such a statized system as we do, the market incentives are all messed up, leading to positive feedback systems like runaway costs, and making patients feel cheated.

In this proposal they want to force you to buy insurance or pay for the inflated costs yourself, ostensibly so that you can't rip everyone else off. But that's what the system does anyway.

 
At 10:43 PM, Blogger Nicolas Martin said...

I was disgusted when the formerly libertarian Reason magazine published "Mandatory Health Insurance Now!: It will save private medicine -- and spur medical innovation," (Nov 2004) by science correspondent Ronald Bailey. (Who happens to also be a psychiatric apologist.)

 
At 10:07 AM, Blogger Lee Killough said...

I let my subscription to Reason run out last year, although they keep sending me free issues. Except for Sullum columns, which I can read online a month after the magazine publishes them, nothing in Reason makes sense anymore.

 

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