July 1, 2012

IT LOOKS EXACTLY LIKE A MANDATE, BUT IT'S OUR MANDATE:

What would replacing Obamacare look like? (Kevin Ferris, 7/01/12, Philadelphia Inquirer)


To do away with the costly, intrusive, tax-increasing Obamacare, now blessed by the Supreme Court, means dealing with the issues -- among them costs, the uninsured, covering preexisting conditions -- that inspired the push for reform.

The authors note that scores of plans offer a market-based approach to health care -- the only way to control costs and make coverage both affordable and accessible -- but they all share seven core "pillars." (I'll give highlights, but read the whole article at www.nationalaffairs.com; look under "archives" for either author's name.)

One, "move American health care away from open-ended government subsidies and tax breaks, and toward a defined-contribution system." Health coverage would come from competing insurance plans, and government would make a fixed contribution toward each person's insurance purchase -- tax credits for most taxpayers, and more generous subsidies for those on Medicaid and Medicare. Pick a plan more expensive than the contribution, and you make up the difference. A cheaper one allows you to keep the savings. Though a new health-care tax break would go to individuals, employers would still be able to deduct their coverage costs

Just as Democrats couldn't open;y call the mandate a tax, the GOP won't openly call it a mandate anymore.

Of course, the key to bringing market forces to bear on health costs is to not subsidize coverage generally, which forces people into less expensive HSAs/catastrophic coverage.


Posted by at July 1, 2012 8:54 AM
  

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