It won’t make health-care health-insurance* reform any cheaper, but it may bring it closer to budget neutral: Barack Obama officially endorses an extra tax on the very rich, during his primetime presser, in order to pay for all the proposed changes.
The idea, he said, is that the costs should be shouldered by those most able to shoulder them.
Fair enough, but the main problem isn’t cost to the government, nor is it cost to the private sector — the problem is cost, period. And simply shifting the burden from one party to another doesn’t change that equation.
What’s more, the ranks of the millionaires are dwindling, and we’d expect that trend to continue. Even if we resume growth at the rate the government expects, we’ll be shocked if the same income disparity of 2007 exists in 2010 (we can bet on that, if you’d like).
*Meanwhile, he apparently rebranded his efforts as “health-insurance reform” since health insurance has such a negative connotation with the public, whereas healthcare doesn’t necessarily. We wonder which pollster got paid the big bucks to figure out that one. We also wonder if they field-tested our preferred term, “Pelosicare.”
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