It’s very fair to send people who disregard the federal mandate to buy health insurance to prison, Nancy Pelosi says, because otherwise they’ll assault citizens … with a bill for medical services … or something. Apparently, the occasionally unhealthy have become such a security risk that we need to imprison them for opting to pay their own way. Infidels Are Cool has the key exchange::
Stone: Do you think it’s fair to send people to jail who don’t buy health insurance?
Pelosi: … The legislation is very fair in this respect.
Of course, the other option is to make people responsible for paying their own bills. Nothing requires us to pick up the tab for people in clinics or emergency rooms, especially those who can afford to pay their way. This is the point that Pelosi and her statist colleagues seem to forget. People who choose not to buy coverage even though they could afford it assume the risk of paying out of pocket — and that may be a very rational choice, as it is most unlikely that those people would use $3,000 a month in medical services, which is what their insurance would cost now.
If nothing else, it reminds us that statism always comes with handcuffs, and those cuffs always get explained by either fairness or patriotism. In this case, Pelosi uses both.