Fixing Healthcare

Chen and Capretta have a summary of their healthcare proposal in WSJ.  One questionable idea is:

Retaining employer coverage. About 155 million Americans get health insurance through their place of work. They should be left alone. The only change would be a new upper limit on the tax preference for employer-paid premiums, set so that only the most expensive 25% of plans would exceed it.

It is a bad idea but the rest of it is an enormous improvement.  One bad idea might lead to a massive heath care improvement.  We’re not supporting this proposal yet.  We would prefer one that makes fringe benefits taxable to the recipient but the health care house is on fire.  Politics and economics are about choices.  We need a discussion before we pick the a better choice.  We also need to remember that the solution might be step-by-step rather than comprehensive.  If it is comprehensive then we need to decide what would make a proposal unacceptable.


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