Thursday, November 20, 2008

A stupid idea we will probably emulate

The latest big-government idea out of Cincinnati, a plan to offer "free" health insurance to the working poor will probably be successful.

That would be "successful" in the sense that it will gain positive media coverage for politicians, spend ever-increasing budgets, and cause more dependency as it gets bigger.

It's called CincyCare:

"CincyCare will provide primary care, a prescription drug benefit, and care coordination for 2,000 workers in Cincinnati who need affordable healthcare, but currently are not eligible. Best of all, this program will come free of charge to participating employers. Employees will only pay a standard $10 co-payment for doctor visits, otherwise there are no enrollment or ongoing costs to them."

The city has already committed $1.2 million to the plan for the next two years. There are plans to expand covered services -- which currently don't include hospital stays. Anyone who works in a Cincinnati business, meets income guidelines, and doesn't already qualify for government coverage is eligible for this program. That is the part that will come back to bite them later on.


Jeff said...

At this rate, maybe we can avoid the federal government taking care of us!

Hempy said...

Calling an idea "stupid" that enables people to improve their health is a pejorative comment without rhyme or reason. A healthy populace is of mutual benefit to us all.

The question is how will it be paid for? You never have any solutions because the last thing you want is a fair tax system.

Ideally, healthcare should be provided by the federal government. It has greater access to taxiing untaxed moneys.

Those include derivatives whose current market is $531 trillion, and annual bank-laundered drug money, which is about $1.5 trillion. A 5% tax on those moneys would generate about $26.625 trillion in revenue. Those are only a couple of sources of revenue that can be tapped.

The bundled mortgages that banks sell could also be taxed. Likewise, the oil market speculations could be proportionally taxed. Those would bring in additional revenues.

Maybe you ought to get a grip on some American values. In Federalist Paper 12, Alexander Hamilton proposed a proportional tax on the movement of all moneys. I call it a toll tax on the economic highway.

Hamilton wrote:

"The ability of a country to pay taxes must always be proportioned, in a great degree, to the quantity of money in circulation, and to the celerity with which it circulates. Commerce, contributing to both these objects, must of necessity render the payment of taxes easier, and facilitate the requisite supplies to the treasury."

The Federalist Papers are some of the finest political writings in the annals of humanity. They are a trove of American values.

Universal healthcare is affordable and doable. It can be done and paid for with these kinds of revenues without raising taxes on working people, and the national debt could soon be paid off.

Anonymous said...

Alright Hempy, I've read that quote of yours 50 times here. Let's discuss it.

I understand the first sentence as Hamilton saying the ease of collecting taxes is proportional to the amount of money in circulation and speed it circulates.

Using the word proportioned does not mean "proportional tax" - ie flat tax or everyone pays the same rate.

The second sentence says commerce leads to more circulation of money, so makes collecting taxes easier.

The more I look at it, I don't even think he's saying tax commerce, just that the more commerce, the easier it is to collect taxes.

But I do like the idea of taxing commerce instead of other means, such as property taxes and income taxes.

What do you think?