May 13, 2013
David G. Savage:
Church-state, literally? Supreme Court weighing public school graduation in a church
May 10, 2013
Rabbi Berel Wein: Be all that you should be
May 8, 2013
Peter Ford: Why China is welcoming both Israel's Netanyahu and Palestinians' Abbas
Obama administration quietly backs out of appeal over new contraceptive mandate
At Kerry-Putin meeting, US-Russia relations thaw --- a tad
The Kosher Gourmet by Leela Cyd Ross :
Almost too pretty to eat, this colorful salad with Sicilian inspiration will tickle the taste buds and delight your visual sensibility
May 6, 2013
May 3, 2013
Kids, kittens the Same?
With employee perks at struggling Internet pioneer Yahoo! it's hard to tell
Artificial kidney offers hope to patients tethered to a dialysis machine
April 29, 2013
Poland's new Jewish museum celebrates life, doesn't revisit Holocaust
Terrorism in America: Is US missing a chance to learn from failed plots?
Boston Bomber's 'Svengali' Revealed
Tiny satellites + cellphones = cheaper 'eyes in the sky' for NASA
April 26, 2013
Clifford D. May:
Defense in the Age of Jihadist Terrorism
Sharon Palmer, R.D.:
How to feel your best -- with plenty of energy, a healthy weight and optimal mental and physical function -- without driving yourself batty
April 24, 2013
Admit it: No one has any idea what's going on
April 22, 2013
US man departing country arrested on terror charges
An unorthodox but growing treatment in a 9-year-old's battle against cancer
April 19, 2013
Caroline B. Glick:
Why Obama's visit to Israel had no impact on public opinion or government policy
Gold collapse: The start of something big?
Livable super-Earths? Two candidates among Kepler's latest finds
April 17, 2013
Too much of a good thing? 'Palestinians' realize downside of foreign aid boom
BAD NEWS: EVERYONE IS RIGHT!
April 15, 2013
Egyptian Christians respond with harsh words to attack -- rocks, Molotov cocktails, and gunfire -- against main cathedral
Marcy Darnovsky and Karuna Jaggar:
High Court to decide if you should own your DNA
US bracing for more Russian blowback after taking action against 18 more human rights violators
April 12, 2013
New cybersecurity bill: Privacy threat or crucial band-aid?
Jewz in the Newz by Nate Bloom:
The Kosher Gourmet by Susan Russo:
Jackie Robinson's Friend, Hank Greenberg; CNN's Jake Tapper; Texas County in the News is named for 19thC. Jewish soldier and Congressman
FRUITY QUINOA STUFFED PEPPERS: A flavorful, colorful and edible vessel of delicately fluffy, mildly nutty filling combined with chewy apricots, tangy cherries, and crunchy pistachios
April 10, 2013
North Korean missiles: Could US shoot them down?
Warning: Don't waste your capital being fooled by profit prophets
Donald Hensrud, M.D.:
Mayo Clinic Medical Edge: Take vitamin supplements with caution --- even approved, they may actually do damage
74 DNA discoveries move cure closer for three cancers
April 8, 2013
Jonathan Tobin: What Part of No Preconditions Do American Jews Not Get?
Is Putin finally trading his own party for a new power base?
Jewish World Review
April 13, 2012/ 21 Nissan, 5772
You Pay for Warren Buffett's Medicare
The president is barnstorming around the nation hoping to enrage voters at the injustice that the wealthy pay fewer taxes than the middle class. "Now that's wrong," Obama objected, "That's not fair."
It also isn't true. According to the National Taxpayers Union, in 2009, the top 1 percent of earners paid 36.7 percent of income taxes. The top 5 percent paid 58.6 percent. And the top 10 percent paid more than 70 percent. Social Security and Medicare taxes fall more evenly on all income groups (except the poor) but are lower. Further, Obama had the opportunity to repeal the Bush tax cuts he claims to find so odious when his party controlled both houses of Congress, but he chose to extend them instead.
This is political demagoguery of a high order, attempting to achieve re-election by whipping up class envy and finding "kulaks" to scapegoat.
While it isn't true that the rich are not paying their fair share, it is true that you are subsidizing Warren Buffett's Medicare. This is but one of the many injustices and inefficiencies of our current health care system that will only worsen if Obamacare is not repealed or overturned by the Supreme Court.
The one and only thing that Democrats and Republicans agree on regarding health care in the United States is that costs are too high and rising at an unsustainable rate, though Democrats engage in denial on the subject of Medicare's solvency. Yet with the very next breath, Democrats nearly always argue that the pre-Obamacare health system was a "free-market" system that failed.
On the contrary, the pre-Obamacare health system was already badly distorted by government. The open-ended Medicare entitlement, which pays for every medical expense incurred by the elderly, without regard to income, is an invitation to overuse. Consumers have no incentive to shop for value and thus, have no idea what the care they receive even costs. Medicaid is even worse.
Those with employer provided insurance (about 80 percent of the population), likewise have no incentive to economize on health care consumption or shop for value, since someone else pays the bills.
People who do not work for large employers face prohibitive prices for individual health insurance policies. This is partly due to the absence of the tax exclusion offered to employers. But two other factors also drive up the cost of individual policies and leave too many people without coverage. State-imposed mandates on insurance coverage — requiring those expensive items such as substance abuse programs, pregnancy, childbirth, and other expenses may be part of any insurance package — drive up the cost of insurance. Whereas a pure catastrophic plan could be quite inexpensive for a young, healthy purchaser, many states prevent insurance carriers from offering them. Additionally, because government is subsidizing so much of the care in the broader health marketplace, prices are higher than they would otherwise be.
James C. Capretta and Robert Moffit propose a series of reforms in National Affairs that will tackle all of these issues.
Like Paul Ryan, they would transition Medicare to a defined contribution or "premium support" model. Each elderly person (excluding those above 55 at the time of passage) would receive a stipend with which to purchase a health insurance plan. Those who wished to pay more out of pocket for more generous plans would be free to do so. The Ryan plan envisions offering subsidies on a sliding scale — more for the poor than for the wealthy. Why should we be paying for Warren Buffet's Medicare?
Capretta and Moffit further propose changing the tax treatment of health insurance to provide a tax credit to individuals rather than to employers. In one stroke, this would introduce cost-consciousness to a system that has conspicuously lacked it, as the consumers of care would be the ones shopping for coverage. The Heritage Foundation (yes, that supposed bastion of class privilege) has even proposed offering a non-refundable tax credit that would be phased out for the wealthiest.
As for those with pre-existing conditions who cannot get coverage (a much tinier percentage of Americans than the Democrats would have you believe), high-risk pools can be subsidized at a fraction of the cost of Obamacare.
Republicans missed an opportunity to reform health care in a free-market direction during the early years of this century. If the court spares us from Obamacare, they may get a rare second chance and thus avoid the rationing, crippling expense and decline in quality for which we are otherwise headed.
Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.
Comment on JWR contributor Mona Charen's column by clicking here.
Mona Charen Archives
© 2006, Creators Syndicate
Richard Z. Chesnoff
Frank J. Gaffney
Victor Davis Hanson
A. Barton Hinkle
Judge A. Napolitano
Cokie & Steve Roberts
Debra J. Saunders
J. D. Crowe
Ask Doctor K