Are you a “bro for life” who enjoys performing keg stands? Then Obamacare’s just the tax for you!
The roll out of Obamacare has made clear to young people something the legislation’s opponents have been unable to communicate for the last three years: the Affordable Care Act uses young people to keep insurance providers solvent, artificially providing them with low-risk paying customers whose business they otherwise could not secure.
In all fairness, many under- or unemployed young people will be able to qualify for subsidies to purchase their insurance, dependent upon age and income level. For those to whom this applies, the government ends up donating to the healthcare industry by inflating insurance providers’ profit margins and generating more business for healthcare professionals by furnishing them a new group of customers with astonishing buying power, due to low co-pays. This shifts the financial burden to the government. The uninsured young who are financially successful shoulder the rest of the burden. So the government debt (read: future generations) and our generation’s independent job creators will fund the newly subsidized healthcare industry.
It’s unclear why many young voters assumed government-mandated insurance would be affordable or free. Even those for whom it will be heavily subsidized balk at the idea of treading through unfamiliar bureaucracy to receive their handout.
It’s not all bad news; it’s harder to criticize an idea than an imperfect reality. As specifics become clear, there’s more of an impulse to correct and replace. A familiar and rough analogy may help. Imagine you have plans to cook a cheap and easy dinner at home. A friend invites you out and you initially decline. They tell you they’ve had a rough day and would really like to hang out. You snack in advance and, when you arrive, have a few bites of an appetizer while they order a full meal. When the check comes, they ask you to split it evenly. Or, in keeping with the “Do you got insurance?” theme, like a buddy convincing you to split the cost of a six pack with you, then drinking five of them. In both cases, you’d probably stop hanging out with that friend, or at least stop splitting the check.