The American Enterprise Institute recently published a paper, authored by eight economists, detailing the alternative health care system they prefer to Obamacare. I disagree with much of what they have to say, but I want to focus here on one crucial problem: The paper tries to achieve the impossible.
In the New York Times, Robert H. Frank, a Cornell economics professor, discusses the “market failure” he sees as necessitating Obamacare. According to Frank, “unregulated insurance markets [are] a catastrophically ineffective way” of achieving “universal” health care, which he considers the goal of health reform efforts.
In a recent article, Megan McArdle considers why insuring her dog is much cheaper than insuring a person. McArdle sees two reasons. Many of today’s highly advanced, expensive medical treatments are not available in veterinary medicine.
Obamacare requires young people to pay higher health insurance premiums in order to subsidize older people’s coverage. But don’t worry, say Obamacare’s defenders: Many young people will qualify for federal subsidies to offset the higher premiums.
A recent NPR story described efforts to extend the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) to long-term care insurance providers. GINA, passed in 2008, prohibits health insurers from taking into account genetic information about you when deciding what coverage to offer you and at what price.