Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Hypocrite Series: Giuliani on Health Care Video Clip

Giuliani's site just put out a video clip of his health care answer:

Giuliani on Health Care

What surprises me in watching this clip again is that Giuliani wants his $15,000 tax deduction to be applied no matter what you pay for health insurance. That means if you pay $8,000, you still get to deduct the full $15,000. That's an interesting idea that will never make it through Congress, and I don't see where you really need a deduction that isn't for the actual amount of the expense.

Anyway, Giuliani goes on to compare his idea of health insurance to homeowner's and car insurance. If you've read my blog, you would probably think I would agree. If so, you're partially right. I agree with the idea, not the analogy.

Homeowner's and car insurance in America is so controlled by government and insurance companies that you have a limited set of choices for deductible. If I have a $130,000 home, I'm unlikely to find an insurer willing to give me a deductible over $1200. They might blame the bank financing my home, but even if I owned it outright, I guarantee you they wouldn't give me a $5,000 or $10,000 deductible.

Car insurance is the same way. Raise your hand if you dropped comp/collision when you paid off your car. Now raise your hand if your deductible is over $500. Okay, I can see my wife's hand, and my hand is up. Anybody else? Nope? Point made.

Like I've been saying, health insurance right now is more like a warranty. It pays for everything with small deductibles or co-pays. Giuliani skirted the better analogy when mentioning oil changes. You don't buy a $2,000 warranty that includes $5 oil changes. You change it yourself for $15-20 (or more if you use the good stuff...Mobile One) or find someone else to do it within your budget. Instead, you use the warranty for a transmission rebuild or engine rebuild like it was intended.

If Americans can't come to terms with the purpose of insurance, then we should resign ourselves to socialized medicine and the expansion of the nanny-state.

I best stop this post before I draw too close a parallel between oil changes and medical tests...that might get ugly and R-rated. :)

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