I had a thought about our current fish-bicycle style employer-based health insurance system where good chunk of the American public’s health insurance is tied to their place of employment. The two things aren’t really connected intuitively. There is no real reason one has to be tied to the other. And I think it results in some unintended consequences – for example, sick people or family members are sick people are likely to stick with a job that’s otherwise unsuitable for them simply so they can keep living and stuff.
But, it does have one salient feature that’s especially resonant in the United States – it at least gives some assurance that we are not insuring lazy people. Laziness might be the cardinal sin in the U.S. And, I do believe, we’d rather have a screwed up, expensive system of health insurance that gives us less for our dollar if it means that no one who is lazier than us gets more than us.
Which might explain why Medicaid is fairly unpopular. Even I’m guilty of it. Within the last month, I’ve grumbled to my wife about some expensive procedure received by someone with whom we’re acquainted. It was something that would possibly wipe us out financially despite being insured if we were to find ourselves in that position. But, since the recipient has Medicaid and nothing to lose, in some ways, they’re better positioned to receive medical care.