Who is this “free rider” that Republican contender for Front Man Mitt Romney was talking about when he ginned-up what subsequently became the model for Obamacare in Massachusetts? He of course meant a person without insurance who incurs costs on others (something that is only made possible, incidentally, by the action of state violence; but let’s deal with that unstated premise later on).
Well, who exactly are these free riders, then? Let’s define what we’re talking about – something that grifters such as Romney (and his ideological kissing cousin, Obama) almost never dare to do.
They are almost by definition irresponsible people – as is always the case when the government starts moaning about “helping” anyone (with the “help” provided, of course, by those who aren’t irresponsible, and at gunpoint). But they are irresponsible not so much because they have not bought a health insurance policy. These free riders are the people who knowingly choose to – for example – produce kids (often in multiples) they’re not capable of providing for; who choose to abuse their own bodies with drugs, or too much food or some other thing; who choose to do something they know is physically dangerous… and in all cases, choose to make no provision to provide for the consequences of their actions.
So instead, others will be made to provide.
First by corporate insurance companies via cost-shifting to the people who do pay and who are responsible. Next by law – and at gunpoint. The insurance companies have succeeded, for the first time yet in the history of this country, in getting a law passed that will make it a legal requirement to pay them tribute. Not for medical care, mind. No, not even that. Just a piece of paper saying you have “insurance.” The medical care itself will be ladled out at their whim, in whatever measure they decide sufficient.
But again, this is not the central question.
Consider: Jones is 23. He eats a reasonable diet, has no real vices (never smokes, hardly drinks), takes excellent care of his body through exercise, does not take unusual risks, etc. He decides – rationally – that it makes more sense, financially, to not buy into the company insurance plan that would take two or three hundred bucks out of his pay every month and instead put that money into his savings account. He will thus have a “just in case” fund for the (slight) chance he breaks a leg or some such – but much more important to a young person trying to build a life, if that money doesn’t need to be spent on medical care he very likely won’t need, he will still have it to spend on other things – a future down payment on his first house, for example. Romney-Obama are determined to take that option away and thereby to make him poorer and more dependent on them and their system as a result.
It is no accident that working and middle class people are going broke in parallel with the now-widespread mandates (and social pressure/conditioning) to have insurance for almost everything conceivable – and so, funds available for almost nothing.
Smith is older but like Jones he also eats right and takes excellent care of himself and so hasn’t had any significant health problems, either. But being older he knows things happen, so he has put aside some money and also bought a high-deductible catastrophic care policy that would step in if he had a heart attack or was diagnosed with cancer. Otherwise, he just pays out of pocket – which he is financially able to do to a great extent because he has not spent the previous 20 years of his working life paying through the nose for insurance to cover routine check-ups and so on. Which, to his way of thinking, is as idiotic as using car insurance to pay for oil changes and tire rotations. He did the math, looked at his own life and his own circumstances – and decided for himself it made sense to pay as he goes, keep a few thousand in the bank – and have that high deductible policy for “just in case.”
It is determined to take even this last lingering free choice out of Smith and Jones’ hands – out of our hands – outwardly because it is “concerned” about all those irresponsible “free riders” who should be able to go through life on the backs of others. But inwardly, the real reason is the Obama-Romney Janus’ burning hatred for the few Americans left out there who do not need them – and more, do not want them. Who want, rather, to be left the hell alone to make their own decisions, based on their own judgment – for good or bad – and be responsible for the consequences.
This is what cannot be tolerated in 21st century America.
And it is why what is called Obamny Care will never be repealed. Indeed, it will be affirmed. And when it is, the last vestige of liberty in this land will have been extinguished at last.
Throw it in the Woods?