The Blunt Amendment Didn't Go Far Enough

If Democrats are right, then it is not just the Blunt Amendment that allows employers to deny any health benefit to any individual for any reason.

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Here's a little thought experiment.

Suppose a lot of companies in the U.S. started offering car insurance as a benefit of employment. Then suppose Congress passed a law requiring all companies to do so. And then suppose the White House decreed that, under the new law, employer-provided car insurance policies must cover the full cost of preventive maintenance, including replacing worn-out brake pads for free.

You could make a case for the brake-pad mandate. You could say it would prevent collisions, save lives, and lower medical expenses. You could point out that brake pads are not a frivolous luxury, like leather upholstery, but a vital necessity. You could cite surveys showing that fully 100 percent of motorists rely on brake pads to keep from getting hurt or killed on a daily basis. And you could note that brake pads cost a fair amount of money, so paying for them puts a dent in a driver's budget.

All true.

What you could not do—at least not without inflicting grievous bodily injury on the English language and basic logic—is contend that a company which preferred not to provide brake-pad coverage to its employees was somehow denying people access to them. After all, those employees could still walk into any mechanic's shop, Pep Boys, or Advance Auto Parts and buy all the brake pads they wanted.

Indeed, millions of Americans have bought their brake pads in just that way for many years. So you could not pretend the company was "taking away life-saving devices from its motoring employees," or "denying automotive care to people who need it." And you certainly could not argue that the company was "imposing its anti-brake pad views" on anyone else. It was not telling employees they could not buy brake pads themselves. It was simply declining to pay for them.

And yet last week countless seemingly intelligent people made just such  arguments about the Blunt Amendment, which would have created a conscience exemption from the insurance requirements of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The amendment was introduced because Catholic institutions such as hospitals and universities objected to paying for contraception, as the Obama administration has required them to do. (The administration has offered a "compromise," but it is an accounting fiction, especially for those institutions that self-insure.)

According to former DNC chairman and current senatorial candidate Tim Kaine, the Blunt Amendment would have let employers "deny any preventive service to any employee." According to Jim Webb, the Virginia senator whom Kaine hopes to replace, "any stakeholder could decide to deny health care benefits to any individual." Maryland Sen. Barbara Mikulski repeated the talking point, fuming that the amendment would allow companies to "deny coverage for any service they choose." Senate majority leader Harry Reid joined in, too: "The Blunt Amendment would allow any employer or insurer to deny coverage for virtually any treatment for virtually any reason."

Even the ACLU, which usually stands up for religious freedom, let politics override its principles. "Religious freedom," it insisted, "does not give religious groups the right to impose their views on others."

This is Orwellian doublespeak of the first order. It is like saying that if Harvard University does not provide every employee with a free subscription to People magazine, then Harvard is forbidding employees to read it. Absurd. You can get People magazine in any drugstore—just like contraception.

Consider what could happen now that the Blunt Amendment has failed. Some Catholic institutions may decide to drop insurance coverage for their employees altogether, and pay the $2,000-per-worker penalty as stipulated in the PPACA. What's more, non-Catholic employers might one day decide, on the basis of a simple cost/benefit analysis, that they are better off dropping coverage and paying the penalty, too—contraceptive mandate or not. They don't even have to claim a conscience objection. They can simply "pay and walk away."

For that matter, the PPACA's insurance mandates do not apply at all to small companies with fewer than 50 employees. Not only are such businesses not required to provide coverage for contraception and other preventive services—they aren't even required to provide coverage for chemotherapy or emergency-room trauma care.

If Kaine, Webb, Reid and the ACLU are right, then it is not just the Blunt Amendment that allows employers to deny any health benefit to any individual for any reason. Obamacare does the very same thing.

Unfortunately, it also hogties companies with a host of other mandates and rules and requirements that the federal government has no constitutional authority to impose in the first place. The problem with Obamacare is not that it requires companies to provide insurance coverage for contraception. The problem is that it requires companies to provide insurance, period—and requires individuals to buy it, not as a condition of driving as with car insurance, but as a condition of breathing.

That is why the Blunt Amendment was not far too broad but far too narrow. A much better amendment would have read: "The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 is hereby repealed."

A. Barton Hinkle is a columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, where this column originally appeared. 

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  1. After all, those employees could still walk into any mechanic’s shop, Pep Boys, or Advance Auto Parts and buy all the brake pads they wanted.

    Call me all the names you want, but as a member of Law Students for Decelerative Justice, I use brake pads daily. Failure to provide brake pads for students such as myself can lead to the unintended and costly consequence of airbag deployment. Society benefits greatly from the readily available brake pad blah blah blah you get the picture.

    1. Violent ground reacquisition devices such as brake pads are merely a crypto-fascist metaphor for nuclear war.

      1. [BRAK]ing [CIVIL]ization through the [BREAK]down of [BREAK]dancing [BREAK]fasts.

        [CIVIL]ians – you’ve been [WAR]ned! [BREAK] it down! Hit the [BRAKES] to [BRAKE] [CIVIL]iziation and slow its [WAR]ring waysthrough [CIVIL] engineering – or a [CIVIL] [WAR]ning to the [CIVIL]ians!

        Derp, hurr durr hurrrrrrrr!

        I think I’ve made my point, LIBBERFIBBERTARDIANS!!

        1. +1
          would read again.

        2. …RENT FREE.

          1. …RENT FREE. …AND WE LAUGH AT HIM ABOUT IT.

            FYP.

        3. BRAKE SYSTEM OVERVIEW
          Pep Boys, Chicago, May 2011
          http://www.pepboys.com/parts/brakes/overview/

    2. You want us to pay for your brakes??

      You’re a dirty fucking cabbie. You probably drive a bunch of people around all day, letting them in and out as they please.

      Dirty. Fucking. Cabbie.

    3. Imagine what oil changes would cost if they were covered by car insurance.

      1. Off topic, but it’s amazing how body work is overpaid compared to mechanical work, purely because of insurance companies.

        1. ^^this^^

        2. Let me be clear. It’s because there is no government oversight on this critical industry.

          I will appoint a commission on body work price controls and put top men on it. Give me your name and the make and model of your vehicle and I’ll look into it for you. That’s what president’s are supposed to do, right?

        3. You might be surprised at the body work quotes you will get if say you don’t have insurance.

          But yes, insurance does cause increased prices but I think the majority of the problem is because car insurance is mandated almost everywhere.

  2. Decelerative Justice

    OK, that’s good.

    1. I ran out of steam pretty quickly after that.

      1. A thing was done, and it was seen by me.

  3. Denying women access to birth control is nothing more than an attempt to deny proper health care to women. It deprives women of there reproductive rights if they can’t afford birth control.

    1. “Not paying for it” =/= “denying access”

      1. But, but, but how can someone have access if someone else isn’t forced to pay for it?

        1. What’s even worse is the stupid Sebelius remark about how subsidizing birth control saves us money in the long run.

          Aside from the debatable aspects of the argument such as the fact that population growth is essential to maintaining a prosperous and healthy society, and most of the developed world will soon have population shortages, it’s just ridiculous to try and quantify population control as a form of fiscal conservatism.

          Unless you’re China or something I guess.

          1. What’s even worse is the stupid Sebelius remark about how subsidizing birth control saves us money in the long run.

            I guess she’s assuming all children grow up to be welfare recipients. Just completely avoid the fact that people generally find productive things to do with their life.

          2. Actually, the claim is based on one of several studies on the issue that found it lowered overall costs by reducing unwanted pregnancy. The effects are small at best and difficult to identify. What is pretty clear is that the cost is unlikely to have a large effect on health insurance rates one way or the other. So the cost issue can be put aside.

            The question becomes whether it is wise to have insurance used as a provider of basic care, rather than as a way to avoid the consequences of catastrophic healthcare costs for the individual. When you funnel all healthcare payments through a system that is designed to pool risk, you are playing a losing game, imho.

            1. That said, unwanted/unplanned pregnancy is a big source of unexpectedly large healthcare costs. It may be reasonable to reduce risk to the pool at large by providing some preventative care.

              So the pragmatics are complicated. The issue will be decided on other grounds. The debate so far has been impressively bad this time around.

              This ain’t about “sex as recreation” folks.

              1. Contraception leads to unwed mothers.

                Jesus told me.

                1. Funny, Jesus told me that blow-jobs were best.

            2. The effects are small at best and difficult to identify.

              “At best”? How about “you can’t possibly place a value on a single individual life so don’t use it as an argument for subsidized birth control”.

              You could argue that yes, less “unwanted” pregnancies would put less strain on a social welfare system, but that entire argument goes to shit once you bring up a single example of an “unwanted pregnancy” that went along to generate enormous amounts of wealth for a society, Steve Jobs for instance.

              That’s the problem with making arguments like this about unborn individuals. We have no idea which ones will be welfare sinks and which ones will be the next Steve Jobs. And arguing that we should just not have the babies period as a way to “save money” is simply idiotic.

              1. That, and like I stated, individuals tend to be productive no matter the circumstances they were born under for thousands of years.

            3. Actually, the claim is based on one of several studies on the issue that found it lowered overall costs by reducing unwanted pregnancy. The effects are small at best and difficult to identify.

              Nope. I’m a former health insurance underwriter. Try using logic — if this reduced costs, insurers would be mandating this coverage whenever possible, instead of having to be forced to do so by the government.

              The marginal cost of providing birth control pills to every covered woman currently using them, plus every woman currently using condoms or some other method, plus those rare idiots who don’t want to get pregnant but who are having unprotected sex during their fertile periods because “pills cost too much”, is slightly greater than the marginal costs of the pregnancies by said idiots.

            4. Stop the multiplication of the unfit!

            5. It’s the government that turns humans into social liabilities. If we still had capitalism people are nearly always economic assets to society as a whole, especially if you sum up their output over a lifetime. How could it be otherwise if you manage to get through life without making claims against the labor of others?

              Even so, it’s silly to discount a human’s contribution to society over a lifetime and do your accounting purely on the basis of contraception and pregnancy costs.

          3. Three generations of imbeciles is enough.

          4. It’s the idea that because government forces you to pay for A, and you don’t want to pay for A you should be happy when it only makes you pay for B because B costs less.

            Using the same logic, I think Sebelius should counsel potential rape victims to give the perpetrator a handjob to prevent being raped and to be happy about it.

    2. +1. Very funny.

      Do you also do, “angry feminist” jokes?

    3. You then are denying me access to birth control by refusing to pay for my birth control. I demand that you give me access!

    4. Women denying my penis deprives them of their right to reproduce. Therefore, I mandate all women accept my offers for sex.

      1. First get plastic surgery.

    5. Moar free stuff!!11!!!1

    6. Yeah, right on, Susan. You better buy me a radio studio or else you’re attempting to deny proper free speech rights to me.

    7. Way to microagress, Susan. You left out genderqueers!

    8. By that reasoning, the fact that you do not fellate me on a daily basis denies me the right to oral sex.

      Why do you want to violate my rights, Susan?

      1. Because you’re most likely an ugly ass prick. Not too complicated. If you’re an ugly and stupid jerk chicks don’t dig you.

    9. It deprives women of there reproductive rights if they can’t afford birth control.

      Because fucking a pussy protected by birth control pills paid for by one’s employer is the only possible way of having sex that doesn’t result in pregnancy.

      Oral doesn’t exist. Anal doesn’t exist. Condoms don’t exist. Pharmacies selling pills not covered by insurance don’t exist. Switching to oral or anal during “frisky week” doesn’t exist.

      1. I can’t wait until Congress passes the Anal Mandate.

        1. Read Forever War. Government promotes homosexuality as a means of population control.

    10. I know. Totally. By denying women free birth control on someone else’s tab, it forces them to take personal responsibility for their reproductive rights which is essentially denying them their reproductive rights. Making women pay for their own birth control would require them to make good financial decisions, which we ALL know women can’t handle on their own with someone to look after them. Isn’t that what our feminist sisters fought for?

    11. Susan, give it up. These guys don’t give a shit about women’s health. All they care about is how to access your vagina.

  4. Step 1:
    Forcing insurers to cover birth control will raise the cost of birth control.
    Step 2:
    Declare that the free market is failing to provide affordable birth control to the uninsured.
    Step 3:
    Nationalize.

    1. We prefer that you don’t use logical arguments against our views. Its not fair.

  5. Ooooh, they’ll go Galt! The Catholic hospitals will stop offering health insurance to their employees! And suffer the backlash that ensures they get second class employees and lose most of their patients. Give me a break.

    1. And suffer the backlash

      What backlash? This is one of the health insurance systems that is built into ObamaCare. Who would attack them for doing what ObamaCare allows them to do?

      that ensures they get second class employees

      Most employees don’t give a shit about benefits. As a rough number, the Catholics would be netting around $4,000 an employee after paying the tax/fine. Tack that onto the employee’s paycheck, and they will have no problem hiring.

      lose most of their patients

      Why would that happen? Patients don’t choose which hospital they go to. Their doctor does, and trust me, the docs don’t give a shit about the hospital’s employee benefits, either.

      and lose most of their patients.

      1. “Who would attack them for doing what ObamaCare allows them to do?”

        Haven’t you seen Obama attacking companies routinely for taking advantage of tax breaks that are expressly writtten into law, including laws that Obama himself signed?

        1. Good point.

        2. It’s OK to take advantage of tax breaks if you’re GE or some other company that is well connected to the right politicians.

          It’s those other companies that don’t give contributions to the right campaigns that are attacked.

      2. 1. Most employees give a shit about benefits.
        2. Lots of luck getting the Catholic skinflints giving employees a share of their profits.
        3. Catholic hospitals would be targeted by unions.
        4. Catholic hospitals would be lucky to be able to hire illegal immigrants from Guatemala.

      3. Patients choose what hospital they go to and I would NEVER go to any religious hospital. Or have you never been to a hospital?

    2. Actually, the 2k per employee will drive the Catholic hospitals and charities out of business.

      Which will mean less soup kitchens and health care for poor people, which is a good thing… how?

      1. Because it shifts those poor people from being dependent upon voluntary charity to government charity, which gives politicians more power.

        1. …to becoming empowered on government handouts…

          FIFY

          By the way, whatever government does, by definition it ain’t “charity”. (As Rush Limbaugh would say, “words mean things.”)

      2. “Actually, the 2k per employee will drive the Catholic hospitals and charities out of business.”

        Moronic.

        ACTUALLY, 2k is way less than they pay to subsidize employees insurance now.

        Why do you fucking idiots start your idiotic stupidity with “actually” like you’re correcting something, especially when you’re demonstrably wrong like you are now?

        1. The word doesn’t mean what they think it means.

          Operationally, a leftist behaves as though she thinks “actually” means “I’m going to tell you a lie and you’re supposed to pretend it’s not a lie.”

        2. Yeah, when those morons they said Medicare would destroy fraternal orders that provided health care and drive up health care costs for everyone, they were fucking idiots!

          When those morons said HMO’s would drive up the cost of health care they were fucking idiots.

          Pretty much any moron who can understand the inevitable consequences of subsidizing demand and restricting supply is a fucking idiot.

          Subsidies increase costs. Period. Full Stop. Restricting supply increases costs. Period. Full Stop.

        3. Actually, you are the moron. See, it works!

  6. Decelerative In-Justice

    Would be when the poor are forced to buy “cheep” brake pads because the “good ones” cost too much……

    The horror!

  7. Give Bitchez free stuff.
    Bitchez love free stuff.

    1. Guys love free stuff.
      Guys love free sex.

  8. That picture explains why Ms. Fluke spends so much on contraception. Seriously, I wouldn’t f— her with your d— wrapped up in 11 condoms. Anyone else wanna weigh in?

    1. Liberal chicks tend to be far worse in bed than conservative ones. You really can tell their ideology from how they fuck.

      1. Now that you mention it…

      2. Methinks the liberal chicks you have managed to coax into bed are not a representative cross-sample of all liberal women.

        Some women are really hot in bed. Some not so much so. Political ideology doesn’t seem to affect that much.

        1. This is true, with the exception that women who use the neologism “reproductive justice” unironically are unerringly bad lays. If a woman’s politics lead her to believe that sex is fraught with political meaning or is a transgressive act against an imagined “patriarchy,” (cf., Fluke, Sandra) sex with that woman is going to be nothing short of awful.

          Find a woman who wants to screw you because she doesn’t know why.

    2. You can do a lot worse in law school.

      1. WHAT’S THAT SUPPOSED TO MEAN!?

    3. I wouldn’t fuck her, but she does have a perty mouth. Don’t ya think?

      1. You are like a little kid. Are you on your mommy’s computer while she is at work?

        1. Does she have a perty mouth or doesn’t she?

    4. Sorry, too stupid a comment to weigh in on.

  9. Quit giving them ideas about mandating more shit damnit.

  10. Many a woman has refused my advances denying me access requiring me to pay for dinner and/or drinks. I demand you give me access for free!

    1. Ya gotta have some sex-appeal first. Most women don’t like assholes.

  11. What does ratatouille have to do with brake pads?

  12. When you require companies to provide brake pads for free to the customer at the insurance provider’s expense, suddenly the price of brake pads in the open market cost $4000 instead of the normal $40. Soon, Instead of being a wide variety of brake pads to pick from, the auto insurance companies will only provide brake pads made of newspaper for free. Otherwise you got to buy the $4000 pads.

    Of course comparing auto insurance to health insurance even in this narrow instance is silly. Since I can choose to say “Screw the car, I don’t want to pay for $4000 pads” and buy a bike. I can’t do that for my own body. Which is why everyone wants the $200,000 spinal surgery instead of the $60 wheelchair.

    1. Since I can choose to say “Screw the car, I don’t want to pay for $4000 pads” and buy a bike. I can’t do that for my own body. Which is why everyone wants the $200,000 spinal surgery instead of the $60 wheelchair.

      Uh, this analogy actually supports the comparison.

      1. You know he thought it was some brilliant “gotcha” moment too.

      2. Not when its your insurance company paying the bill. That’s the entire point. If its your life, you want the best care possible because there is no substitute. A rational person will always demand the surgery over the wheelchair.

        That is why you have been paying for insurance for all those years. Car insurance is catastrophic event insurance, health insurance is not.

        Yes with the blunt amendment at no point as someone been denied access to any birth control. They have been denied access to prescription birth control unless they pay out of pocket. When employees are required to buy health insurance, employers should not have have the leeway to determine what-is, and is-not covered.

        Employers determining coverage plans is just as anti-free market as insurance mandates are.

        1. , you want the best care possible because there is no substitute.

          The wheelchair is the substitute. It’s an economic decision; do you want to walk or are you OK with a wheelchair?

          Do you want good brakes or do you want shitty ones?

          1. The difference between being able to walk and not is nowhere near the same as the difference between good or bad break pads.

            A good brake pad or a bad brake pad will both stop the car. They provide all the same features, even if the bad one wears out a little faster.

            You know damn well that if YOU had to choose between living or dying or walking or being crippled you’ll pay anything, do anything to save yourself.

            Even Hayek admitted there were times and places that a free market system doesn’t work and isn’t the best solution.

            1. The difference between being able to walk and not is nowhere near the same as the difference between good or bad break pads.

              To whom?

              I know that if I had to pay 200 grand to walk vs 60 bucks for a wheelchair I’d be rolling my ass around a while.

              1. Also, it’s “Brake” pads. I’m guessing a break pad would be something to sit on.

                1. touche.

                  “Brake” pad.

                  But if it’s 200 grand to live or 300$ for a casket, I’m guessing you’ll pay the 200 grand.

                  Not to mention, birth control pills are used for a lot more than simple birth control. A friend of mine gets very sick during her cycle and takes birth control to help control that. There are other medical uses for birth control as well, such as cysts and other mysterious lady-part ailments. They’re a legitimate health care related drug. So get over it.

                  1. But if it’s 200 grand to live or 300$ for a casket, I’m guessing you’ll pay the 200 grand.

                    Now you’re moving the goalposts. Of course I’d pay any amount of money that I had no liability for to sustain my life; if I had to pass the debt on to my children I may very easily choose otherwise though.

                    It’s an economic decision. You can not effectively make a good objective judgement of what I want or need for any subjectively valued good or service.

              2. The difference is not YOU paying $200 grand or $60, its the insurance company that pays that. YOU have been paying 12 grand every year for health insurance to the insurance company. That is the entire point of insurance. When the time comes to pay up, are you really going to accept them giving you a $60 wheelchair after giving them 12 grand a year for years? No, you’re not. No one is. And remember, you are REQUIRED to buy insurance.

                1. The difference is not YOU paying $200 grand or $60, its the insurance company that pays that.

                  Oh my god, really?

                  How do you think insurance companies get their money?

                  Yes, I AM paying for it. Either way.

            2. Even Hayek admitted

              Yes, if I remember right he was particular about the use of coercion and fraud.

              Mises made no such argument that I’m aware of, however.

  13. I skimmed the article, but I still haven’t heard anyone mention the cost of birth control pills going up, once the patient (consumer) is disconnected from the price signal.

    1. Yeah, but it’s cost to those evil insurance companies. Nobody cares about them, they’re evil!

      Just nevermind the fact that insurance costs must rise as a result.

    2. That’s not the intention, it’s the result.

      But if you point it out you will be accused of opposing the intention.

      1. There’s a road that goes somewhere, paved with intentions…

        1. California?

          1. +1

    3. What do you mean? What are you talking about?

      Look over there! SQUIRREL!

  14. I thought this article was going to be about the marijuana.

    1. When we get maryjane as part of Obamacare – and the good shit, not ditch weed -then I’m on board with the mandate.

      Ok, not really…

      “Blunt”….lulz!

      1. Hey, I thought the same thing when I saw the headline.

    2. Brilliant. Don’t start talking about any medicinal marijunana mandates, or you’ll have all the libertarians switching sides at the thought of free weed with zero co-pays.

  15. Some Catholic institutions may decide to drop insurance coverage for their employees altogether, and pay the $2,000-per-worker penalty as stipulated in the PPACA.

    Something tells me this would be a bargain.

    1. I think it’s also part of the plan make having insurance so abhorent that companies will quit providing insurance forcing people into Obama care. It’s a win win for Obama he is actually a master at turning things around for himself.

      1. Great point! quit providing insurance so they can provide mandated insurance. Brilliant!

  16. Patients don’t choose which hospital they go to. Their doctor does, and trust me, the docs don’t give a shit about the hospital’s employee benefits, either.

    No way!

  17. Reason commenters rushing to defend the Catholic Church…yup, just like the Book of Revelations predicts.

    1. you know the saying,
      “the enemy of my enemy is … marginally less of an enemy in comparison”, or something.

    2. Meh, something tells me that, once they get their waiver, the bishops will line up behind Obamacare like good little collectivists.

      1. Yeah, the catholic church is happy to use its bully pulpit to promote socialism in every other aspect of life. Now they’re getting a lesson in Iron Law #6.

  18. They should deny women access to drivers licenses. That’ll save some lives.

    Because women are shitty drivers.

    1. don’t forget the Asians. Rednecks too. Old people. Come to think about it if you euthanize old people you save a bundle.

  19. I made a similar point/analogy to a liberal friend with regard to a gym membership to prevent me from having heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes. He had no retort. Big ‘gotcha’ moment. He certainly didn’t want to pay for my gym membership. I think it’s actually a better argument than the contraception argument given that those diseases are a much more serious health concern than women’s “reproductive health.”

    1. Who knows what the hell goes on “down there”

    2. Your “liberal friend”, is a tad dense. Any “universal” system of health care delivery, needs to provide a lot of “preventative” care, like your health club membership, or, a registered dietitian to help you understand how to feed yourself a healthier diet, all to promote a healthier lifestyle. It would dramatically reduce the costs of expensive and pervasive treatments, from maladies caused by a sedentary lifestyle. Costs would shift to treat more repetitive stress injuries, like those suffered by frustrated men who dismiss the importance of women’s reproductive health.

      1. I think everyone would be healthier with government mandated morning calisthenics! Get up off your ass and stretch! Or go to prison!

        1. LOL But….freedom to be a lazy ass, may doom someone to expect expensive on going coverage in the future, for a slew of preventative diseases, that those who have made healthier choices, will not need, but will be asked to subsidize…..hmmmmm 😀

      2. I’m curious as to whether physical therapy is considered preventive care or whatever the other kind of care is called.

        If not, why should a gym membership be zero co-pay, but physical therapy for (say) a broken leg require a co-pay?
        Really WTF?

        It’s like saying that healthy people get free shit, but sick people have to pay for stuff. Ass backwards.

        1. Yup, it’s f***ed up…Methinks if there’s no co-pay for the membership, it’s some sort of warped incentive program, but, if you are hurt and need PT, they figure you don’t need an incentive to go. ????

      3. You just summarized the liberal position.

    3. Ignorant liberal. (no all ignorants are conservative)

  20. Reasonable is as reasonable does. Treatments provided should be based first and foremost, on what the care provider believes is the best for the patient. For an employer to interject themselves in an “al la carte” manner, into what type of care the employer may find “moral” or not, is all the more reason that employer-based health care, should be scrapped like the “company town”, as a failed model. The 16% of GDP we currently spend on health care, should be a HUGE incentive to design a far better health care delivery system, to everybody that wants care.

    1. If the employer is paying the bill, the employer has every right to inject themselves into, say, exactly what benefits are provided by the medical plan they are purchasing.

    2. Passionate Moderate|3.6.12 @ 6:46PM|#
      “The 16% of GDP we currently spend on health care, should be a HUGE incentive to design a far better health care delivery system, to everybody that wants care.”

      Non-sequitur.
      If we pay 25% of the GDP for housing, that means we value it such that we pay 25% to get it.

      1. No gap in logic, and your Econ 101 retort, shows you missed the point…If you think we’re getting our money’s worth out of the current system in absolute terms, you’re alone. With so much revenue at stake, in an open market economy, someone should be able to design a better delivery system, that would woo consumers from the status quo and cover those currently excluded.

  21. By refusing to have sex with me you are denying me access to sex.

    How can you deny me access to sex? How dare you condemn me to be a virgin forever? Don’t you know that sex is a critical aspect of one’s quality of life?

    1. Gotta have some sex-appeal first.

  22. Neu Mejican|3.6.12 @ 1:29PM|#
    “Actually, the claim is based on one of several studies on the issue that found it lowered overall costs by reducing unwanted pregnancy.”

    Neu, in his typical stupidity, posits that since government has already screwed medical expenses, why, it must continue to screw them further!
    Way to go, Neu! We were sure there wasn’t much between your ears, but confirming it is kind of you.

  23. Clark Howard says “Best auto insurance rates go to those who shop around” ofcourse the place i go is “Clearance Auto” rates

  24. Here’s the differences between birth control and brake pads: 1) In some cases birth control pill serve a legitimate medical purpose other than preventing pregnancy, which should be cover by insurance like any other medical remedy; 2) Preventing unwanted pregnancy as a result of natural sex drives has a social benefit—less abortions, fewer unwed mothers, and less children born into squalor.

    Our price as a culture for paying for these benefits: The price of birth control for all. A small price indeed.

  25. I’ve asked this in every forum on this subject that comes up. If the government not paying for health care is the same as denying the right to health care, why is the government not purchasing every American a gun? I’d like to have some more but can’t afford them, so where’s my taxpayer purchased Desert Eagle?

    1. The Second Amendment, says that ” A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” Not be infringed isn’t interpreted as guaranteeing ownership of the arms of your choice. Adding a Constitutional Amendment, that mandates cradle to grave health care for all citizens, by any and all means necessary, would give validity to the first part of your premise, but the Second Amendment must be formally amended, to validate the second part of your premise.

      1. Unlike the Birth Control Amendment, which is apparently does not need modification.

  26. The premise of the article is false. You don’t need a prescription to get brake pads, you do for female contraception. Not covering it through insurance will be followed by doctors refusing to provide a prescription. Now how you gonna get your brake pads?

    1. You don’t need a prescription for condoms or a contraceptive sponge, only for the most convenient form of contraception preferred by Ms. Fluke. In the brake pad analogy, the pill is a set of Brembos, and the other forms of over the counter contraception are your common Raybestos brakes.

      Second, how, exactly, would “not covering it through insurance” lead by necessity to “doctors refusing to provide a prescription?” This is a non sequitur if I ever heard one.

  27. This article is shit. ’nuff said.

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