Sunday, December 12, 2010

Do You Really Want A Government That Does This?

We already pay taxes for police, fire, and similar emergency services. In some places, though, if you need those services, you get hit with an additional, steep, charge:

Strapped for cash, a growing number of municipalities have begun charging for responding to accidents -- services that have long been covered by taxpayers. Sometimes, the victim's insurer will pick up the tab for these new fees -- but sometimes the insurers will refuse to pay.

This past week, New York City joined the growing debate over what some are calling a "crash tax."

Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced the city wants to begin charging accident victims hundreds of dollars each as one way to help plug the city's multimillion-dollar budget deficit.

Crash taxes are just some of the extreme measures states and cities are taking around the country to counter billions of dollars in budget deficits.

Maybe, when the costs of Obamacare are too large for even liberals to ignore, you'll be taxed for health care--and then charged when you need to use it.


allen (in Michigan) said...

That's how things already work. In Canada.

That's why there's a healthy, you should pardon the expression, traffic in cross-border medical testing and procedures. There are some Canadians who've been cut off. If they want to live, or walk, or be free of pain, they have to pay the freight and that after having paid for the health care system all their lives.

MikeAT said...


A few years ago I was watching the news and they had an article on how Canada has such a shortage of doctors. Young people don’t want to go into medicine because it’s not a good career…can’t make a decent Canadian buck and it’s highly regulated. Now one thing they do have a lot of is veterinarians. Similar young people go into veterinary science where they can make a decent buck and they are not regulated to death. Why…because there is no free health care for Fido…

Gee, discourage people from going into medicine and you have few doctors, nurses, etc. Who would have thunk it!


A few years I had a car accident on duty with another patrol vehicle (before your smart ass comment, I was not held at fault…but man did we have a wreck…totaled my car, 8K damaged on the SGT's car and we put 2K damaged on a house that was standing in the wrong place :<)….). Six months later I get a bill from the fire department saying I owe them 150 bucks for emergency medical services….my insurance didn’t pay for my transport and I owe the city money! took almost another six months and three letters with two phone calls to get them to understand this was an on duty accident and any issues must be taken up by the city. I sent them the accident report showed my job was “Police Officer”, the other driver’s occupation was “Sergeant of Police”, accident was during reponse to call for service, both us worked for the same department.

Damned, dealing with bureaucrats really makes things work more efficiently.

Ellen K said...

Back when the Clintons were waving this same banner, the American public was led to believe that HMO's would lower costs. This ignores the basic principle in all businesses that the more remote the consumer is from the provider, the more expensive the product or service becomes. Instead of paying the doctor, a series of paper mazes were created requiring not only more insurance personnel at the insurance agencies, but at the providers' offices as well. Suddenly rather than paying a doctor, you were paying a consortium of doctors under the umbrella of a billing service. Procedures that could be pinned down in cost to the penny by the insured, were suddenly vagaries wherein you could receive four, five or more bills from various people who provided services along the way. Fast forward to today and the bureaucracies created by the Obamacare bill further insulate providers from the recipients and on top of it extorts money that may or may not go to the patient's services in the form of premiums. While the insured pay more, the uninsured get more and they don't have to pay a dime. For every person who goes to the hospital there are two others whose room and services they pay for in the form of insurance premiums. Just this week my son saw a doctor about his knee. For that fifteen minute consultation, he got three different bills at every turn. What was previously a relatively simple trip to the radiology department now becomes triple the cost. I don't blame the doctors because they in turn have to pay higher insurance premiums just to keep the doors open.

And on it goes. The bottom line is that if tort reform had reeled in trial lawyers and if portability and competition across state lines had been the centerpiece of this bill, it would have passed and been lauded. Instead Democrats got greedy for power and tried to push for a variety of social alternations under the guise of community services and healthcare. It was a fallacy from the beginning.

allen (in Michigan) said...

MikeAT, interesting you should bring up Canadian veterinarians, a topic which isn't generally considered a conversation-starter.

I don't know how true it is now but some time ago I read a flurry of articles about the dearth of MRI's in Canada and how getting an MRI tomorrow is easy if you're a Canadian dog but not so easy if you're a Canadian human being. The reason was the same as the abundance of Canadian veterinarians and thin ranks of Canadian MDs - government interference in the free market.

maxutils said...

The only purpose of taxation should be to pay for services like these. When we start being charged for them . . .why bother any more? If you get burgled, pay for the police. Ridiculous.