Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Covering ObamaStaches©

Full disclosure: I can't grow a beard to save my life. I don't really mind, because lately, what does come in is decidedly more salt than pepper. But still.

I bring this up because of a grave and serious injustice that's still under the radar: full coverage for men's facial grooming products.

The prestigious American Mustache Institute estimates that Y-chromosomed-Americans spend upwards of $1500 a year on these products, yet are denied basic tax and insurance fairness. To that end, the organization is pushing the "Stimulus to Allow Critical Hair Expense Act, or 'STACHE Act ... It appears clear that mustache maintenance costs qualify for and should be considered as a deductible expense related to the production of income under Internal Revenue Code Section 212"

The STACHE Act would help defray these expenses by making them tax deductible. And that's a good start.

But I say: Why stop there?

It seems to me that these types of expenses are just as much healthcare-related as, for example, birth control, and should be covered at 100% by one's health insurance. This is more than an issue of fairness, though: as the AMI's Aaron Perlut notes, "trimmers, wax and other accoutrements are ... protectors of the environment -- because not shaving saves water."

But Henry, you may argue, covering these products will increase health insurance costs and besides, only (about) half of the population would benefit.


As we now know, adding the cost of inexpensive and readily-available products does nothing to increase the cost of coverage. And the argument that it would benefit only (about) 50% of Americans is irrelevant.

See? Win-win.
blog comments powered by Disqus