I got into this argument with some friends on Facebook about a month ago.
Imagine you're in this group of about a dozen families who are all afraid that their houses will burn down. So each family puts about 2% of their income into a pool every year, and this fund will cover the cost of a new home for anyone whose house burns down.
Sure enough, every now and then someone's house burns and the group fund has to cover it. By carefully adjusting the rate that everyone has to pay, the fund winds up with 3.5% more than it pays out. (That's the profit margin for the Health Insurance industry, BTW.)
Next, imagine that a newcomer wants into your group. He's heard good reports about the low cost, and how quickly the funds were applied after each household disaster.
There's only one catch: This guy's house has already burned down.
Would you vote for the group to build him a new house? Especially if he crosses his heart, hopes to die, stick a finger in your eye, and promises to start paying money into the fund one day?
(Hint for Democrats: you're going to be giving him a house for nothing. Another hint: I'm not interested in what you ought to do in this situation, I'm interested in what you're going to do. People's houses burn every day, and you don't buy them a new one. I don't think you would let him into the group.)
Ok, enough of that hypothetical nonsense.
If the current Baucus Healthcare Bill passes, will any young person in this great land of ours be dumb enough to pay for health insurance?
Well, yeah. But they will be scarce. This is the Powerline blog explaining why:
....in the current version of the Baucus bill, there is no requirement to buy health insurance at all until after 2013, and by 2017 the penalty for failing to buy health insurance still amounts to only about 15% of the cost of the insurance.
Now, think about it: if you know that you don't have to buy health insurance when you are young and healthy, but if you should get sick, or just get older, you can apply for health insurance at any time and it will be illegal for the insurance company to turn you down, what would you do?
Obviously, you would defer buying insurance unless and until you get sick.
This means that the pool of those who are insured will be lower quality, and the cost therefore higher for everyone who buys insurance.
It is as though you could wait until you die, and then your heirs can buy life insurance on you.
As the great Thomas Sowell has stated a thousand times, in a thousand different ways: Government policies and programs should not be judged by their stated intentions, but by the incentives they create.
In this case they're creating GREAT incentives for younger people to go without insurance.
Our current government is beyond parody. They don't want healthcare for everyone, they want control. They want power.
Many of the people at the top have never even had to profitably run a Blockbuster Video night shift.
What could they possibly be thinking ? Where is the mainstream media on this joke?
Is there not a Woodward and Bernstein out there? Where is Jon Stewart on this? Letterman? Leno?
The Baucus Bill word cloud came from here.