Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Health Insurance An Abused Concept

The basic concept of insurance is to provide immediate coverage that you will pay for, over the life of the policy. It is a zero sum game. The subscribers pay all costs insured as a group.

When someone says 45 million people don’t have health insurance, that is a misnomer, they are self insured. A self insured person is not going to visit three different doctors and have three blood tests as Obama suggests. But if you have health insurance, the health care system will rip your ass with three doctors and three blood tests. It might be long and drawn out, but it’s covered by your insurance. The doctors know how to ride this pony all the way to the bank.

Then there is liability and lawsuits. Most Congressmen started out as lawyers—hmmm. No reason to mess with liability limits, is there? Lawyers work on commission, don't they?

The irritating concept of this health care plan is the concept that 45 million people can’t pay for health care. Look at it this way, 300 million people can’t afford to pay for the coverage being promised. Will we ever really pay for it, or will it become part of our ever growing national debt?

The concept not perceived as real, is that health care treatments have progressed into an area to where the procedures due to their complexity are virtually unaffordable. A liver transplant can cost millions. Daily cancer injections can run $2,000 per shot and a premature baby 200K.

If you were to go out and buy a life insurance policy, a one million dollar policy might run you say $4,000 dollars per year. If you wanted a policy for 100k it should cost $400 per year. This concept is used with many different forms of insurance like Fire, Auto and Homeowners policies. The risks are predetermined and you pay accordingly. Notice you have the option to buy it; it is not forced on you. Insurance is a concept that allows you to cover now what you can pay for later, not what you can foist off onto government without the intent of every paying.

If you want to force insurance on someone, how about making it auto insurance. Over 50 percent of LA drivers have no insurance, “they can’t afford it.” Health insurance is a noble idea, but it is not a practical concept in a Democracy. Of course if you are talking Socialism, then there is no argument, we all deserve the very best. When you get to that point you are gaming the system. Medical treatment with new modern technology is not affordable for most of the human race and never will be. Our resources are finite, and government distribution of them, doesn’t make them go any further. People don’t go to medical school for 10 years just to work for the government; a high school education is all that's necessary.

The concept of living longer during retirement is now a very attainable goal. The idea of the world being populated by nothing but old farts chasing young tarts with a bottle of Viagra is a rather novel one. Modern medicine can enable us to live longer. We can die of other diseases later in life and rack up even more medical bills to boot (a catch 22). At some point we need to realize that socialized medicine puts an unfair burden on the young people just entering the work force.

This seems like a stretch for an article on the Great Depression, but we can’t afford the Medicare\Medicaid plan now in force for the old, coupled with Social Security. It is bankrupting us. It time to wake up and smell the financial ruin we are creating. There is no need to make the problem bigger.

We need health care and we need to be able to afford it as individuals. The government should keep out of this. If the government was to “Health Care” General Motors, we would all want BMW’s. In reality we’d pay for the BMW and end up getting something that would sound like a lawn mower and fail a smog test.


Anonymous said...

Health insurance is a noble idea, but it is not a practical concept in a Democracy.

We're still in a democracy?

Anonymous said...

Where are all the news reports (from any media outlet) that folks are dying in the streets from widespread plagues and poor health? What is the EMERGENCY?

Where is the debate? Where are all the pretty government graphs that sort out who the 43m "uninsured" actually are?

Fact is, our government could care less about the health of its citizens and more about votes and control. I find it very interesting that the POTUS, when asked during his news conference if all government employees including himself and members of Congress would have to participate in the program... he never answered the question.

Looks as of late, the health bill is on hold. Lets hope in its current form it stays that way!


Anonymous said...

The 45 million non-elderly uninsured are...

By Race/Ethnicity:

White - 12.2%
Black - 20.9%
Hispanic - 33.5%
Asian - 17.5%
Am. Indian - 29.7%
2 or More Races - 13.2%

By Citizenship:

US Citizen Native - 14.4%
US Citizen Naturalized - 21.5%
Non US Citizen <5 Years - 42.7%
Non US Citizen 5+ Years - 44.7%


Jim in San Marcos said...

Hi Anon 6:27

As for whether we are still in a Democracy or not, I'm not sure. We're in up to our necks in something and it doesn't smell quite right.

Jim in San Marcos said...

Hi Angry Tax Payer

I was thinking the same thing, where is the emergency? Health care is a minor issue. Here is a guy that has been in office only 6 months and is making statements like "We have to get this passed by August 4th. Congress is a little like a Southern plantation, you don't tell the owner to go pick cotton.

I could relate to him standing up and saying that something needs to be done to help the black and Hispanics who are suffering an unemployment rate double that of whites. What's with this health care stuff? Our kids aren't sick, they need jobs.

Obama is yelling health care and everyone else is screaming Unemployment. You need a job to qualify for this new proposed health care plan. Go figure!

Anonymous said...

Congress is a little like a Southern plantation, you don't tell the owner to go pick cotton.

Love the analogy Jim.

I'm beginning to believe the POTUS' superhero status is slowly being stripped away. The fallout of his recent "acted stupidly' comment seems to have brought him back to earth and shown that the man can actually bleed.

I do not believe the health bill will ever make it off the launch pad. Pelosi has put a noose around the 'reasonable' Dem's necks and expecting them to step off the chair. But looks as if they are not going down without a fight.

Your absolutely right about the unemployment situation. The president should be screaming JOBS, JOBS, JOBS!!!


Jim in San Marcos said...


Glad you liked the analogy, I try to sneak a little humor in when I can.

I think Potus's biggest mistake is telling everyone what they are expected to do. He's already had 4 press conferences in 6 months and GB only had 4 in 8 years. He is over doing it a bit. If he keeps pushing it, he runs the chance of being labeled a "Jive Turkey."

I'm with you, I sure hope this health bill falls flat. We have to have the best medical system in the world if world dictators fly here to be treated.

Anonymous said...

We definitely need more competition in healthcare. Not necessarily in the form of a public insurance plan, but in the form of do-it-yourself [DIY] medicine.

There are many DIY trades out there, like car repair, house repair, home schooling, cooking, wine making, etc etc. The world seems to be fine even when all the work is *not* done all the time by professionals.

Anonymous said...

I believe what people need is an education in "Health". That education should result in an understanding of the human body's innate ablility to heal and a path to regeneration.

People don't need health insurance,they need knowledge.

"Let food be your medicine and medicine be your food." [Hipocrates]

Jubilee said...

Very nice analysis! Most people do not understand the difference between health care and health insurance. There are 100 ways to provide health care without messing with insurance or forcing people into mandatory insurance schemes. However, none of those 100 ways would increase government power in the same way. This is just a huge power grab.

Jim in San Marcos said...

Hi Jubilee

I like the way you summed it up. Simple but concise enough that even a Congressman could understand it.

Thank you for your comments.