I was browsing blogs and news articles the other day regarding the issue of Obamacare and came across an interesting comment: How many people who “cant afford” healthcare have cable?
Since reading this I could not stop thinking about the lifestyle of those who cannot afford to purchase healthcare, so I decided to run some numbers.
Using eHealthinsurance.com I was able to perform a simple search for a married couple, both 35 and smokers. 58 results appeared starting at $142 a month – not bad for smokers! Non smoker plans started at $124 a month. This search was performed locally in Washington State, Kitsap County.
Kansas - $155 smoker, $115 non-smoker
Atlanta - $134 smoker, $98 non-smoker
NYC - $340 smoker, $340 non smoker
Boise - $131 smoker, $118 non-smoker
In my job, with a group plan, I pay $40 a week for coverage, including my wife and child – I used to pay $80 a week (and liked that plan better). So for my family, I pay about $160 a month for non-smokers. Affordable, very affordable.
Let’s take the average of the four randomly selected cities above, and assume a national average of $190 a month for smokers and $167.75 a month for non smokers. That rounds out to about $2200 annually for smokers, $2000 for a non smoking family of two – standard coverage with deductibles, etc.
Assuming a smoking family, combined, sucks down one pack a day (that is 10 cigs each a day, not a far stretch), they will spend $35 a week on smokes costing $5 a pack – or $1820 a year on cigarettes. Just $400 less than a full insurance package annually! Assume that the smokers also have standard rates on Comcast for TV, Phone, and Internet. The price of smokes plus the amenities is $3476 annually, or $1196 MORE than a health insurance plan.
Non smokers with the amenities still have a $357 annual gap to fill – but that cup of coffee, even home brewed, averaging $5 a week is $260 annually… assuming you splurge on a starbucks coffee on average of 1.5 times a week – BAM, health insurance is paid for if you give it up.
What is my point?
My point is that the problem is not a lack of private health insurance, or the cost of private health insurance.
Rather, it is a sense of entitlement. People feel that they DESERVE cable TV, or Internet, or Digital Voice phone. They feel they DESERVE to smoke, or drink a beer a day (another $500 a year). Entitlement Mentality is plaguing our nation.
While these individuals and families who are unable to buy insurance are spending thousands of dollars a year on “niceties” they are also shouting that they DESERVE certain things for free from the government.
I learned at a young age that It is not my RIGHT to have an allowance… I never got one. And when I begged for the almighty dollar from my father, it was usually in return for some labor or chore swapping. I never expected that I would be given anything for free… no handouts. What my father worked to earn, I was not entitled to it.
Similarly, what I earn, self made despots who blow their money on extras and who are clearly living beyond their means, are not entitled to. I value my life’s energy too much to give it away on someone who doesn’t share the same value for their life.
So, the conclusion is simple, the government already provides ample coverage for those who TRULY cannot afford insurance by any other means… there is no need to continue to redistribute wealth so that those “without” can live a lifestyle that does not fit their income bracket… once they are returned to an appropriate lifestyle, there will be motivation to reach the next rung on the ladder. For those who are unmotivated, don’t crawl into my wallet!