Your "Right" Not To Be Insured Costs Me $1,100.00 Per Year.
The new health care law's individual mandate is a conservative idea, or it was until President Obama embraced it. Of course if Barack Obama endorsed an anti-flag burning amendment we would likely witness tea parties, complete with red, white, and blue bonfires, from Pocatello, Idaho to Pensicola, Florida.
* * * *
Hey, Mr. and Mrs. Teabagger dude and dudette, your "right" to not have the Kenyan-born, Marxist, President Obama force you to buy health insurance is costing me $1,100.00 a year. So, if you get to remain uninsured, do I get to watch you suffer in pain if you unexpectedly need medical treatment? I'd like to (not really).
* * * *
Does Congressman Ron Paul (R-TX) really have the political foolishness to try and send thousands of sick and injured Americans away from emergency rooms, untreated, because they don't have insurance or money, or is he merely sucking up to the "Palin Wing" of the GOP? (I know, "Palin Wing of the GOP" is redundant).
Congressman Paul says that he will soon introduce a bill to repeal the individual mandate to purchase health insurance.
At last week's "Southern Republican Leadership Conference" (aka the "Pandering To Teabaggers Conference") Paul said, "There's one piece of legislation that I'm going to introduce, it's going to be one page long. It will be to remove the mandate so you don't have to participate if you don't want to."
Okay fine Mr. Paul, if people don't want to buy health insurance they don't have to, but let's make this fair to all of us that do participate in the system. If people don't have insurance, and they don't have money, and they don't have a rich uncle, or a generous church, or a winning Lotto ticket, they don't get treated... for anything... no matter what.
If someone shows up at an emergency room with blood spurting out of their eyes and ears, and they don't have the means to pay, they should leave untreated, right? If a kid slips on the ice and breaks his arm, and he doesn't have an extra $10K in the bank, it's too damn bad for him (and his part-time Burger King gig) right?
* * * *
We live in a country that, for the most part, won't turn you away from an emergency room for lack of insurance or money. It's inhumane not to treat an injured or sick person, and most of us with even a modicum of decency would not approve of such a practice.
Because millions of Americans seek medical treatments without insurance, and because we don't yet live in Glenn Beck's "I'm rich, sorry you're not," dream world, health care providers are forced to shift the cost of treating the uninsured to the insured. The cost of this: $1,100 per family, per year. In 2008 the "hidden tax," the amount of money spent to treat the uninsured, totalled $116 billion. This has put an unbearable amount of financial strain on hospitals, doctors, and other medical providers.
* * * *
The number of states that are suing the federal government over the constitutionality of the individual mandate that requires everyone to purchase medical insurance is eighteen and growing. Their argument is that the federal government does not have the right to force a private citizen to purchase anything.
Most legal scholars don't believe that the states will prevail, but let's assume that they do. What then?
Can I wait until I'm sick or hurt and then buy insurance? Same with auto, homeowner, and disability? Sweet!
* * * *
RING. RING. RING.
"Good afternoon, State Farm Insurance."
"Hi, I need to sign up for car insurance and also file a damage claim."
"I don't have car insurance but I rear-ended a guy today so I guess I better buy a policy. But I just want to get enough insurance to cover the damages, then I'm gonna cancel the policy. How much will that be?"
"Sir, we can get you insured right away but today's accident will not be covered."
"Sir, you need to have a policy in place to be covered for an accident. You can't buy insurance after the fact."
That's bullshit! Why should I have to pay for insurance when I don't need it? I've never had an accident--
"Sir, you had an accident today."
"You guys are a bunch of Kenyan-born socialists."
* * * *
We can no longer sustain a system that allows 46 million of our citizens to be without basic health care insurance and we don't have the luxury to opt in to programs when we need them and out of them when we don't.
We have fire extinguishers, burglar alarms, and first aid kits with the hope that we will never use them. The same goes with insurance. Nobody enjoys sending premium checks to multi-gazillion dollar insurance companies, but we do it because it's the prudent thing to do.
Every man, woman, and child needs to be covered. The millions of people that can't afford the premiums should be subsidized. The young, healthy people need to participate in the system to offset the needs of the the older, less healthy crowd. Ideally everyone would be on Medicare, but that won't happen any time soon.
To the highly vocal Tea Party crowd I would say that this isn't just about you (as much as you'd like it to be). If your uninsured neighbor has H1N1, suddenly your kid has it, then you have it. It is not in your moral or financial interest for anyone to remain uninsured.
In the end, if you choose to remain uninsured, I'll end up wanting you to be treated, because even though you don't care about me, I still care about you.But, even though you'll never admit it, you're counting on the kindness of liberals, right?