Employer provide health insurance is perhaps the strongest chain tying people to a life of wage serfdom. The chain provides several modes of constraint:
- Changing jobs becomes cumbersome and expensive since you have to fill out all the paperwork to change policies with each job change.
- Setting up a group plan is a major headache when starting a new business. It was expensive too for middle aged entrepreneurs with preexisting conditions.
The old system was so bad that it made socialized medicine look almost good — and I personally loathe the idea of socialized medicine. The last thing I want is to experience the customer service and efficiency of the Department of Motor Vehicles when I get sick. I would rather overpay for private medicine. Alas, this option is not feasible for everyone.
So, while I was greatly concerned that we were on the way to socialized medicine when Barack Obama won the presidency, the resulting legislation is surprisingly not bad ObamaCare probably has some truly nasty provisions buried in its 900+ pages that I’ll whine about in the future, and I strongly suspect that some of its price control measures will backfire as such things tend to do.
But there is a huge upside: a viable individual market for health insurance by those not still young and healthy. And if I am reading the Wikipedia summary of the Affordable Care Act correctly, the employer mandate won’t cut in until a business reaches 50 full time workers. This gives many a small business time to grow before dealing with health insurance headaches. ObamaCare may start a small business renaissance.
Then again, ObamaCare is needlessly complex, like this MIT designed Coke machine:
So on the main site I propose a simpler solution, with most of the benefits of ObamaCare minus 850 pages of legislation and a stupid overpriced web site. Read it there and come back here if you wish to comment.
Proceed to ObamaCare: a Simpler Alternative.