Portland petition would give free health care to kids.

A Portland doctor submitted signatures for a local measure mandating the City and schools to fund free health care for Portland students. Projected cost = $3 million. Don McIntire of the Taxpayer Association of Oregon was highlighted on KATU-2 TV as saying “There is nothing in our constitution, especially not the city charter, that says that everyone is entitled to health insurance,” he said. “I mean, the government doesn’t guarantee your house, your food, your clothing.”

This petition follows the trend to solve the health care problems, not by making it more affordable but rather by forcing other people to give it for free. The definition for the measure’s free health care is simple — no insurance for three months. There is no income requirement so anyone can simply drop their coverage, wait a while and then get the free coverage from the schools. It is an invitation for financial mismanagement and social irresponsibility.

Portland should consider other state’s example where they are allowing health insurance companies to offer just-the-basics coverage (without the costly government mandates) which is affordable to lower income families who need it. More government is not always the answer.

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Posted by at 06:35 | Posted in Measure 37 | 21 Comments |Email This Post Email This Post |Print This Post Print This Post
  • Rupert in Springfield

    You know, maybe where we went wrong is with the entire concept that if you get a majority, that majority can decide to steal, through taxes, from the minority. I mean isn’t there something wrong, when a doctor can get an idea for essentially a charitable enterprise, and then force others to pay for it simply by getting enough people to agree its a good idea to steal from the others?

    • David

      Rupert wrote:
      > You know, maybe where we went wrong is with the
      > entire concept that if you get a majority, that
      > majority can decide to steal, through taxes, from
      > the minority.

      Like the way that homeowners are stealing from renters? Homeowners get to deduct a significant portion of their housing expenses, which are then paid by those who can’t or don’t want to own a house.

      Or like the way that businesses and individuals get to deduct their health insurance expenses, which the uninsured do not (unless > 7% income)?

      You mean this kind of theft, Rupert?

      • Rupert in Springfield

        >Like the way that homeowners are stealing from renters?

        What are you saying here? If I own a home and live in it, I am somehow stealing from someone who rents a home from a third person? You think that is the same as someone saying I want this or that, so lets tax everyone so I get some free stuff?

        I don’t think that comparison holds a whole of a lot of water.

        >Or like the way that businesses and individuals get to deduct their health insurance expenses, which the uninsured do not

        Wait a second, aren’t you guys the ones always telling us that we are all paying for the uninsured anyway? I mean I am not sure if you are one of the socialized medicine types but I gotta feelin you is.

        As I recall the logic of this one goes, those who are insured pay higher premiums because the uninsured go to ER’s and the insured eventually wind up paying for them through higher premiums.

        So…. Au Contraire my friend, it would appear the uninsured are already stealing from me. You now propose they get a tax deduction for doing so?

        I think not.

        At any rate, my getting a tax deduction is hardly the same thing as another person taxing me for their benefit. A tax deduction for one, does not damage another as no money or benefit has been taken from them. A tax increase for one, to pay for the benefit of another, does damage the first party.

        • David

          > A tax deduction for one, does not damage another
          > as no money or benefit has been taken from them.

          OF COURSE it does. The fact that you are taxed less means that others must be taxed more.

          The fact that homeowners get a break on their mortgage must come from someone else’s pocket. That is, from nonhomeowners. Why should they be paying part of your housing expenses?

          And, if you ever *were* insured, you would know that the insured are hardly lining up to pay for your medical care. By and large, you do without. Tens of thousands of Americans die early each year from lack of insurance.

          • Rupert in Springfield

            >OF COURSE it does. The fact that you are taxed less means that others must be taxed more.

            How in the world does it mean that? There are two logical errors in this argument. The first is that a tax cut results in lower revenues, this is not the case in a wide variety of taxes. The second error is the assumption that government is owed some set amount of money. In other words you are assuming any tax revenue that would have been had if my mortgage interest deduction had not been allowed, really is the governments money anyway, so they just have to get it from someone else. This is a really disturbing assumption.

            >That is, from nonhomeowners. Why should they be paying part of your housing expenses?

            Ok, lets pretend I accept your assumption. Most non homeowners are mid to lower income. They pay virtually no taxes anyway and probably don’t itemize because of that. They get the standard deduction. You want them to get the benefits of itemizing ( under which the mortgage interest deduction would be allowed ) on top of that? What kind of reasoning is that?

            >And, if you ever were insured, you would know that the insured are hardly lining up to pay for your medical care. By and large, you do without. Tens of thousands of Americans die early each year from lack of insurance.

            What are you on about?

            Look, just answer the question, since you brought it up. Anyone who argues for socialized medical care is always saying we already are paying for those without insurance because the insured are paying higher premiums that subsidize the uninsured who show up at emergency rooms and don’t pay. Fine. Now you want them to get a tax deduction for doing so because I get to deduct the cost of my insurance?

            What kind of logic is that?

            I have to subsidize them AND they get a tax break?

            I pay for every dime of my insurance out of my own pocket. Please don’t booo hoo to me about a bunch of people who don’t have insurance and die. I already pay 50% of everything I make to the government. If that is not enough to cover the needs of those who cannot get their life together, that is hardly my affair. The suggestion that I am stealing from the poor, who pay no taxes or negative taxes ( welfare, through the earned income tax credit ) is absurd.

  • Alan

    Rupert, you are assuming the measure will pass. Voters rejected a health acre measure a few years ago, they may just as well reject this one. But as you say, there is real problems when people vote to take other people’s goods.

  • Rupert in Springfield

    Yeah, who knows if it will pass. Once you get a majority who gains more than they pay in, by stealing from the minority, what do you do about that? How do you stop it? Obviously it is unsustainable.

    My apologies for using a worship word, sustainable. I simply could not think of another one that would suit in this context.

  • Jerry

    But isn’t this brave, brave doctor only helping the children? Everyone loves children, so it should pass by a large majority.

    This man obviously has thought this through and is convinced we need it. Well, he is a doctor, so he has to be smart. Who are we to argue?

    I commend him for his brave, brave stand and only hope this passes quickly, as without it what will happen to all the children??

    The children are our future. They must be cared for now and forever and for free. What else makes any sense? I only hope and pray that his plan includes dental, vision, orthodonture, and any other types of care that might be needed, like massage therapy, accupuncture, chiropractice, psychological, diet, conditioning, etc. I can not accept that in a country that can send a man to the moon and back we have children who are needing our help and not getting it.

    Vote YES for the childrens. And vote often. I only wish we all could be as smart as this fine doctor man with the wisdom of the world in his little head. He is to be saluted for this brave stand! I am sending him some money, too, as he might need some to help with public education on this most vital matter for the childrens of our nation.

    • Alan

      Wait Jerry. I thought liberals told us that doctors are evil because they make a lot of money and are part of the corrupt big health care industry.

    • David

      Jerry, I thought Republicans believed in family values. At least, that’s what they’re always saying. What could be of higher value than giving a family’s children health care?

      Or do you only care about children before they’re born?

      • Jerry

        It is patently obvious from my statement that I support the good doctor in this vital effort.
        I urge all peoples to vote YES on this measure.

        La vie longue les enfants!!

  • Bob Clark

    I’ve read that this proposed healthcare program depends on attracting new students to the Portland School district so as to increase Portland’s share of state school money allocation. This seems like a very dubious assumption. If they don’t come, then local taxes will instead be raised and the families with school children who currently live here could actually start exiting Porland at an even faster rate instead of paying higher taxes for a government run health program. If they do come, school district costs, excluding this healthcare proposal, should rise and potentially offset most if not all the gain in state funding.

    Historically, families/people flee from communist states like the ever evolving commune called Portland. This proposal smacks of yet one more move to make Portland more commune like. For those that thrive on individual freedom and individual responsibility, Portland is not for you. Stay away.

  • dean

    I say it all went down the wrong path when the liberals passed child labor laws. If the little buggers would just go back to work in the mines and on the farms, they could get health care through their employers…or not…like everyone else. And if they were working they would not need to be in school, so we could save money by firing these lazy no good union coddled teachers.

    I’m going to go bite the head off of a bunny now. Vote for me.

    By the way…Does Don McIntyre even live in Portland? Why does he care if Portlanders decide to do this?

  • Dave Lister

    My understanding is that this proposal, as written, has no component of means testing. Parents of any income level could enroll their kids on this plan at taxpayer expense. Parents who are buying health insurance for their kids could actually cancel that insurance and enroll their kids on the new plan at taxpayer expense.

    Dean, with regard to your comment about Don’s residency:

    All public expenditures are fueled by private sector wealth creation. The public sector does not create wealth. As the tax burden increases locally, regionally or nationally the private sector is degraded.

    If I had a dry cleaning business in Tigard, but many of my customers live in Portland (maybe working in Tigard since Portland has lost so many jobs), as their tax burden increases they may decide that they can no longer afford dry cleaning and start ironing their own shirts. Taxes and income don’t respect municipal boundaries. You have to look at taxes across the board and evaluate what percentage of the overall domestic product (the wealth creation) ends up in government coffers.

    It’s just as appropriate for an Oregon resident to object to the obscene, wasteful spending that went into the Big Dig in Boston, as it is for a taxpayer in Gresham to object to a higher tax burden in Portland. Essentially the money all comes from the same pot.

    • dean

      Dave…respectfully, I think people should pay attention to tax and spending policies within the communities that vote and pay taxes and recieve services in. Your definition of interest is too broad for my taste. I suppose I could write letters to India complaining about a tax because it might raise the cost of a product I buy from there, but I would rather let Indian people sort out their own affairs.

      Th Big Dig was largely financed with federal gas tax dollars, so I suppose one has a legitimate claim there as a gas tax payer.

      • dean

        Dave…what evidence do you have that Portland has (lost so many jobs)? Isn’t it more true that Portland has continuously gained in numbers of jobs since the 90s, all during their so called socialist governments? Jobs in some sectors have been lost (manufacturing) as they have been across the nation. But these have more than been replaced. Otherwise how did Portland gain 150,000 people and manage to balance its budgets all these years?

  • Dave Lister

    Dean,
    The Portland Business Alliance reports thirty thousand jobs lost within the city limits in the last decade.

    • dean

      Is that “net” jobs Dave? There are 30,000 fewer jobs and about 150,000 more people? I have a hard time buying that.

  • Dave Lister

    Dean,
    The important part is “within the city limits”. There are more jobs in the region, but not the city proper.

    • dean

      Dave, I will bet you one of my micros against a 6 pack of your Pabst that there are more net jobs in the city limits of Portland today than there were in 2000.

      The only Business Alliance study I could find on this was for downtown Portland only, and even it reports gains in jobs over the last few years after the early 2000 years downturn.

      Think about the growth of commercial activity along just about every east side Portland collector and arterial road over the past few years. Yes these are service and retail jobs, but the design industry has also been booming.

      • dean

        To clarify…I meant if I win I get one high-priced micro. If you win you get the Pabst.

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