Friday, December 28, 2012

Contract Rights Means No Insurance Mandates or Minimum Wage Laws

This letter recently appeared in the NJ Star-Ledger:

Fertility insurance
Although Gov. Chris Christie professes a strong aversion to unfair subsidies, he has been silent about the annual multibillion-dollar legislative subsidy that requires all New Jersey businesses, governments and employees to pay for fertility coverage in their insurance premiums. This is because the subsidy largely benefits the governor’s affluent suburban constituency, who disproportionately receive the lavish subsidy.
If the governor really cared about business and hard-working New Jerseyans, he would support the increase in the minimum wage and re-commit himself to his promise to cut the fertility insurance mandate.
Mark Oshinskie, Highland Park

Oshinskie's mixed premises are obvious. I left the following comments:
RE: Fertility Insurance
I agree that fertility insurance should not be mandated, but not because of the economic status of those who purchase fertility treatment. Individuals and insurers have a right to contract voluntarily to mutual advantage, and that means having the freedom to negotiate the terms of healthcare policies without government interference. For this reason, all insurance mandates--which, as Mr. Oshinskie correctly notes, are a form of subsidy or wealth redistribution--should be repealed. All mandates, I would add, are unfair subsidies, because they forcibly take money from some to pay for others' healthcare. The government's proper purpose is to protect everyone's individual rights to pursue his own values and happiness equally and at all times, regardless of race, gender, or economic status. The right to freedom of contract--i.e., free association--is a foundational principle of America and of a free society. 
The same goes for employment contracts, which is why minimum wage laws should be repealed. Here, I find it interesting that Mr. Oshinskie doesn't agree. The primary victims of minimum wage laws are the young and the poor. Minimum wage laws close the job market to anyone without the productive skills necessary to justify that arbitrary government-mandated wage scale, thus denying to many the opportunity to enter the job market and gain a chance to develop the skills, experience, work ethic, and self-esteem needed to advance economically. Minimum wage laws essentially kick the lower rungs of the "economic ladder" out from under the unskilled, the young, and the poor--especially the ambitious poor.
Insurance mandates and minimum wage laws are immoral, because they violate rights to freedom of action based on personal judgement.
Related Reading:

Politicians create such laws because they seek the votes of the select people who benefit from such market intrusions and to hell with the people who stay unemployed due to the jobs not created and don’t know they are being screwed.

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