“Mr. and Mrs. Frost say their income’s about $45,000 a year – she works ‘part-time” as a medical receptionist, and he works ‘intermittently’ as a self-employed woodworker. They have a 3,000-square-foot home plus a second commercial property with a combined value of over $400,000, and three vehicles – a new Chevy Suburban, a Volvo SUV, and a Ford F-250 pickup.
“How they make that arithmetic add up is between them and their accountant. But here’s the point: The Frosts are not emblematic of the health care needs of America so much as they are of the delusion of the broader Western world. They expect to be able to work ‘part-time’ and ‘intermittently’ but own two properties and three premium vehicles and have the state pick up health care costs. Who do you stick with the bill? Four-car owners?
“I’m in favor of tax credits for child health care, and Health Savings Accounts for adults, and any other reform that emphasizes the citizen’s responsibility to himself and his dependants. But middle-class entitlement creep would be wrong even if was affordable, even if Bill Gates wrote a check to cover it every month: it turns free-born citizens into enervated wards of the Nanny State. As Gerald Ford likes to say when trying to ingratiate himself with conservative audiences, ‘A government big enough to give you everything you want is big enough to take away everything you have.’ But there’s an intermediate stage: A government big enough to give you everything you want isn’t big enough to get you to give any of it back.”