But that actually makes my point: Modern delivery of health care is complex enough without government involvement.
James C. Capretta, an American Enterprise Institute scholar who is considered a right-of-center wonk on health care, says, quite rightly, that it would be best if everyone cast off the self-imposed pressure and craft a better bill. And he offers a list of concrete measures he'd like to see.
Here's the problem with his list: It's still predicated on government requiring things of private organizations, and, more fundamentally, the notion that has insidiously established itself as a national assumption over the last century: that government ought to be in the business of providing services.
The two most egregious manifestations of his premise - his surrender to the statist mindset - are the idea of automatic enrollment, which would be based on requiring (there's that word again) insurance companies "to offer plans with premiums exactly equal to the standard credit," and ratcheting up the penalty for breaks in coverage.
He lays bare the extent to which he has succumbed to a view of the inviduals comprising the American populace as cattle-masses:
And think about the substantial-increase-in-penalty provision: Mr. Capretta, how is it any of government's damn business whether a given citizen chooses to interrupt his insurance coverage?Moreover, states could identify individuals who fail to use their credits using federal tax data and state data sources, and automatically enroll then into such plans. Under this approach, the affected individuals would be notified of their coverage but could choose a different plan or withdraw their enrollment at any time. Most people are likely to remain with their assigned plan, especially since there would be no financial obligation on their part. They would get a high-deductible insurance plan at no cost to themselves, which is far better than no coverage at all.
As push comes to shove and guys like Capretta buy into the supposed need for government to swoop in and mop up even the slightest hint of upheaval, I get a clearer notion of who deserves my respect and who doesn't.
And then there's the Wall Street Journal editorial this morning that, dismayingly but not surprisingly, disparages the House Freedom Caucus as the House Freedom-From-Reality Caucus. The good old accusation of insistence on perfection standing in the way of the good getting enacted.
No, it's not an insistence on perfection. It's insistence on this whole effort being driven by the primacy of freedom.
And now Squirrel-Hair is strongly intimating that, if the frantically-tweaked Ryan bill doesn't pass today, he'll move on to other matters and let the "A"CA continue to wreak its ruin.
This whole thing makes clear just what a huge percentage of our political and governmental class, our policy-wonk class, and our pundit class, have lost sight of the proper relationship between the state and the individual.
Health insurance is just a service. If produced and consumed in a manner that reflects an understanding of that - namely, that it should exist to cover catastrophic occurrences, but not routine health care - there's not much role for government.
But then the question arises, who finds that an undesirable scenario?