Always Ask Who Will Pay for Free

In a mostly terrible article on President Obama’s town hall tour in The Washington Post, this:

Randy Rathie, the welder, told Obama that explanations of how reform would be funded have been lacking. “You can’t tell us how you are going to pay for that,” Rathie said. “The only way you are going to get that money is to raise our taxes.”

Obama told Rathie that the money for the changes would come from efficiencies and other savings and from people who make more than $250,000 a year.

The “efficiencies and other savings” canard is pleasant to hear, but debunking that is for another time when the details can be explored. The last claim is the low-hanging fruit I’m aiming for here. How is it not a tax increase to state that people who make more than $250,000 per year will pay for the costs of health insurance “reform”? Because they aren’t The People, somehow, so they don’t count? Even if that could be answered, what obligates those individuals, by mere status as financially successful in the president’s non-cost-of-living-as-a-consideration-view, to pay for the health insurance of those who are not financially successful? And how is it reform to further entrench the mentality that third-party payment is the way to control the costs of medical care?

Taking from those making more than $250,000 – despite their being evil for stealing from the poor, of course – is flawed because it still encourages the mentality that someone else is responsible for taking care of you.


Also in the article:

He tried to rebut the notion that health-care reform represents a “government takeover,” noting that most people’s coverage would remain what it is today.

“I don’t want government bureaucrats meddling in your health care, but I also don’t want insurance bureaucrats meddling in your health care,” he said.

If someone else pays for your care, be it government or an insurance company, a bureaucrat will “meddle” because that is the entity with the financial incentive to do so. This is neither complicated nor contentious. There is no such thing as “free”. The more we attempt to pretend that is not true by having another pay for what we want, the worse our health care system will become.

One thought on “Always Ask Who Will Pay for Free”

Comments are closed.