The Failures of Universal Insurance

When I tell people I do not have “health” insurance, that I do not pay into the company “Health Plan”, people look at me as though I am from Mars. They ask things like: “What if you are in an accident?” “What if you get sick?”

Well, on the first question, I usually always ask why an accident needs extra coverage when many accidents are technically already covered by other insurance plans already in place, such as auto, homeowners and life insurance plans. For example, if I my life is ended simply by walking down the street getting hit by a car, this would be typically covered by life insurance should I choose to own such a policy. I would be covered in this case assuming I am not playing “chicken” with cars or jaywalking while intoxicated…some things are just not insurable.

If I am hurt at work, the company’s plethora of state mandated “insurance” plans cover my possible accident. The employer is further backed by the ability to drug test any person involved in an accident, reducing these accidents from such liability on the corporation or company’s behalf.

On the second question, I would ask what they mean by “get sick”? If they are asking, what if I wind up with cancer or some other sort of debilitating disease, I ask why that would be covered by an employer’s plan anyway? That is the sort of “coverage” that ought not be pooled in with every candidate. This is a practice under the guise of “universal” insurance that makes no sense to me. Every candidate should choose in opting to have this sort of coverage; and having the choice of carrying personal health insurance or not could be possible under a free market system. In a free market system, insurance companies would opt to test you according to proper risk assessment and build your plan accordingly, as opposed to a socialist system which lumps all people together regardless of the risk factors involved.

Everyday health and illness is very hard to define and therefore not truly coverable. It is generally up to the person to get out of bed every morning and get to work and receive pay for the work done, and not if they do not get up and go into work. Under the latter circumstance they simply do not receive income. If they simply do not feel well enough, why should that be paid by everyone else? Anyone see in this point were the consistently rising costs of medical care originate?

I will now offer you something from the Ludwig von Mises Institute on the subject. This is an excerpt from an article by Hans-Hermann Hoppe which I will credit as the main source of my research in backing up my contention on this subject. The excerpt is taken from von Mises’ book “Socialism”. I decided to use this material not because I did not reach a similar conclusion on my own, but that I understand that my “credibility” is under scrutiny unless I support my views with the merits of “professional” economists.

To the intellectual champions of social insurance, and to the politicians and statesmen who enacted it, illness and health appeared as two conditions of the human body sharply separated from each other and always recognizable without difficulty or doubt. Any doctor could diagnose the characteristics of “health.” “Illness” was a bodily phenomenon which showed itself independently of human will, and was not susceptible to influence by will.

Followed up with:

Now every statement in this theory is false. There is no clearly defined frontier between health and illness. Being ill is not a phenomenon independent of conscious will and of psychic forces working in the subconscious. A man’s efficiency is not merely the result of his physical condition; it depends largely on his mind and will. Thus the whole idea of being able to separate, by medical examination, the unfit from the fit and from the malingerers, and those able to work from those unable to work, proves to be untenable. Those who believed that accident and health insurance could be based on completely effective means of ascertaining illnesses and injuries and their consequences were very much mistaken. The destructionist aspect of accident and health insurance lies above all in the fact that such institutions promote accidents and illness, hinder recovery, and very often create, or at any rate intensify and lengthen, the functional disorders which follow illness or accident.

So until I have a choice in truly choosing a “health-Care” insurance plan with an insurance company which tailor-fits my plan to my lifestyle and a true risk assessment, I will carry no “health” Insurance. I will continue to simply pay cash for my visits and save a ton of money each year by taking care of myself, and NOT paying into a system doomed to failure. And I won’t be playing chicken in traffic or bungee jumping anytime soon either. Those sorts of activities fall under the suicide class and are uninsurable. Any form of universal healthcare, whether offered by government or a corporation, is another form of welfare and ought not be forced nor coerced upon anyone.

I’ll also add that it is the improper “insuring”of all classes of people together as one that drives up the real costs of medical needs. This is a subject for another article I’ll lead you to covering the subject (just click this sentence).