Friday, March 09, 2012

Ezra K keeps whiffing it

Never let it be said that Ezra Klein lacks persistence. He keeps on swinging, despite his 0 for (whatever) record. His latest silliness posits that genetic testing will destroy the health insurance industry.

To which I would reply: take a number, pal.

Here's his theory:

"The New York Times reports that the cost of sequencing an individual genome will soon be less than $1,000 ... The legislation bars insurers from denying coverage or raising premiums on individuals who show a genetic predisposition toward particular diseases ... it armed a time bomb beneath the health-care industry."

First, we see the classic (and disingenuous) sleight-of-hand conflating health care with health insurance. If you can't even get that right, Ezzie, why are you playing at all?

To continue setting the stage:

"Eventually, genomic testing will be a powerful predictor of future illness. And it raises the potential that young people will get themselves tested and then purchase insurance based off the result."

And this is where he goes completely off the rails. How? It's really all about ObamneyCare©: either it will "stick." or it won't. If it does, then "young people" aren't going to have a choice about whether or not they'll buy health insurance: they will, or they'll hit the hoosegow. If it doesn't, then why does Ezzie believe they're going to be any more motivated when the test is $1000 - or $100! - than they are now?

He offers "solutions" - an Individual Mandate or "Medicare for All" - to a problem that doesn't (and won't) exist. But let's say it does: I thought these guys were all "pro-choice?" How does that square with forcing folks to buy something they don't necessarily want or need? It certainly doesn't solve the problem of increasing health care costs (just ask the Brits).

Strike three.

[Hat Tip: FoIB Holly R]
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