But, instead of taxpayers handing a “Free Buffet Coupon” directly to the cashier for all the poor, what we’ve got to do is provide the poor—and all health care consumers—with a greater sense of ownership, individual responsibility and choice to eliminate the incentive to overeat and waste food.
The best way to do this is with money, either in the form of cash or credit.
After all, if we want people to save for college or retirement, we offer them a tax-free IRA.
If we want people to buy houses, we allow them to deduct the mortgage interest from their taxable income.
And, if we want people to save money for health care, we should let them open a tax-free Health Savings Account.
And, if we want them to buy health insurance, we should allow them to deduct the health insurance premiums.
Put simply, if we want people to lead healthier lives, we need to give them the incentive to do so. The message has got to be, “An unhealthy life costs you money, a healthy life saves you money.” If you lead a “high risk” lifestyle, you should expect to pay a higher premium on your health insurance than someone who is more health conscious.
If good drivers with clean records can get a discount on their auto insurance, then why can’t those who lead a healthy life get a discount on their health insurance?
This isn’t discrimination, it’s the market doing what it does best: analyzing risk and fixing cost.
We’ve got to come up with a way for the poor to take ownership of their health care and the best way I know of to do this is with money.
If we don’t do this, I’m afraid liberals will convince a majority of voters that HillaryCare is our only option “for the poor,” and we’re going to lose the best health care system in the world.