Friday, October 30, 2009

The Subsidized Health Insurance Tax

Well here we are right in the middle of the World Series every Met fan is bored by... Who do we root for? We know that the 2009 World Series is a historical event, yet we watch it not really caring one way or another. It's kind of like when I watch the Soccer World Cup Final... its historical.. but who really cares?

I was just getting ready to write today’s column when I got a call today from a buddy who was quite annoyed about an issue about his company’s health insurance plan. I listened to his situation, but since I am not a lawyer, I really couldn’t do much but listen to him vent… and then at the end of the conversation, I threw in a little plug to check out today’s NWOW column because I was planning to write about the problems that plague us... and the Republicans who make it worse.

I don’t know too much about the issue but I think medical costs would be much lower if malpractice policies were lower and if people were not always suing doctors who mess up for every last dime they can squeeze out. Nonetheless, these are the cards that we have been dealt and it is time to find a solution.

Hillary Clinton took up this issue in the early days of Clinton I but since the Clinton era was followed by 8 years of George Bush, the issue was put aside because this was a topic too complex for President Bush’s limited mental capacity. Now Obama is in the White House and is making health insurance reform the centerpiece of his first year in office.

The "debate" continues whether health insurance is a right that all Americans are entitled to. Many Republicans feel it’s a luxury and many liberals feel that there should be Robin Hoodesque policy to subsidize the poor. Ron Paul was on Larry King’s show last night and said that if the government has no money and mandatory health insurance costs money, then the money will have to be collected from somewhere to finance it. That’s true but people keep crying out "Socialism!" if the government starts running the health insurance show… By the way, socialism really works well on kibbutzim in Israel. And wouldn't we rather have socialism than an aging population that cannot afford to take care of its medical needs??

The rich people of the Republican Party who spend their time drooling over Fox News Channel have a large voting bloc and many of them are fortunate to never have to worry about their health insurance or paying for it. They are lucky enough to work for companies that take care of it for them. And since I am a reasonable Democrat I can understand why they resent that they have to kick in shekels to pay for those who cannot afford it.

But how much of our tax money is allocated to pay the medical bills for those who can’t pay themselves?? And how much less tax money will pay for the federally run Obama health insurance program? And with a new plan in effect how much taxpayer money will go to pay for health insurance? My idea is to call it what it is.. a tax! We can call it the HIT – the Health Insurance Tax… or add an S in front and call it the Subsidized Health Insurance Tax.

If specific HIT money is taken from all of us to pay for health care, the HIT money should then be tax deductible. However the interesting thing is if my poor neighbor has to tap into the HIT fund, then we get to write off the neighbor’s health care costs but not our own. Right now, you can only write off health care costs that exceed 7.5% of your annual income… and a large chunk of people don’t get to write that off... especially those who will be paying a lot of money into health insurance taxes.

So let’s call it what it is… a tax that should be tax deductible. And to keep health costs tax deductible, why is 7.5% the cap to make health insurance tax deductible?… Make it all tax deductible. Right now a family making 100k that pays $7400 per year in health bills cannot write it off… Change the rules… after the government figures out how the payments will be divided up among my fellow tax paying Americans, let's make things a little more fair for everyone paying into the plan... Lower the 7.5% threshold AND turn this money into a HIT tax so at least taxpayers can get a write off for the money they are paying so the tax payments can make more sense.

PUMPSTRADAMUS PICK OF THE WEEK: Last week Pumpy won again to raise his record to 3-4. Since this weekend is a big Philly New York weekend with the Knicks, Giants and Yankees playing against those cheesesteak teams. The Eagles host the Giants in a pick 'em game. Sayeth the Pump:

"Im hosting the Psychic's club at my home this weekend and they always leave a giant mess... so take The Giants!"


Last week we went 1-2 to bring the season record to 9-12. This week we try to run the table to get to .500

Giants PICK EM over Philly - It would be nice for the NY fans to win one of these Sunday showdowns...(Is my preference for the Phillies over the Yankees starting to show?)

Seattle 9 1/2 doggies over DALLAS - A good week for the Giants to open up some breathing room.

Minnesota 3 point doggies over GREEN BAY - If the Giants lose and 2 teams from the Dallas, Green Bay and Atlanta trio win - the Giants would close Nov. 1 going from 5-0 to out of a playoff berth!

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