The Socially-Engaged Economist -  Why childless men pay for pre-natal care (153 views) Notify me whenever anyone posts in this discussion.Subscribe
 
From: Lionheart16 DelphiPlus Member Icon Posted by host3/16/17 6:32 PM 
To: sh121 DelphiPlus Member Icon  (1 of 7) 
 19298.1 

I have been saying for a long time that our education system ought to beef up economics literacy. Economics literacy is no less important than numeracy. Recently, Representative John Shimkus's question of why men should pay for prenatal care is a good indication that there is rampant economics illiteracy, not just among high school schools, but also among American politicians. If our politicians don't understand basic economics, how can they help shape public policies? At my college, I have tutored many college students on introductory economics. These young people learn about the production function, demand curve, supply curve, equilibrium price and profit maximization. But, to the best of my knowledge, they never get to learn the basic concept of insurance. They don't understand the concepts of risk pooling and diversification. I see this as another failure of our education system. Young people are being taught some abstract concepts. But they don't understand how these theoretical concepts are applied in real life, in matters that have a direct impact on their daily lives.

 
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From: Lionheart16 DelphiPlus Member Icon Posted by host3/16/17 7:00 PM 
To: Lucy 2005-2017 RIP (JUNODOG)  (2 of 7) 
 19298.2 in reply to 19298.1 

I think Nancy Metcalf of Consumer Reports did a fine job explaining this to a middle aged childless man: "So, as a middle-aged childless man you resent having to pay for maternity care or kids' dental care. Shouldn't turnabout be fair play? Shouldn't pregnant women and kids be able to say, "Fine, but in that case why should we have to pay for your Viagra, or prostate cancer tests, or the heart attack and high blood pressure you are many times more likely to suffer from than we are?" Once you start down that road, it's hard to know where to stop. If you slice and dice risks, eventually you don't have a risk pool at all, and the whole idea of insurance falls apart.

http://www.consumerreports.org/.../why-a.../index.htm

 

 
From: Lucy 2005-2017 RIP (JUNODOG)3/17/17 4:16 AM 
To: Lionheart16 DelphiPlus Member Icon  (3 of 7) 
 19298.3 in reply to 19298.2 

As a one time licensed insurance agent, I believe that risk pools can be set up within a population in the hundreds of millions such that only people in their fertile years share the cost risks of bearing children and keeping them healthy. This coverage could easily be an add-on to general medical coverage such that the twenty eight year old healthy female could share general medical risks with old folks like me.  

By the way, I gained the most knowledge that helped me learn and understand economics from a course in anthropology.  A perfect example of a very bright economist who is almost always wrong is Paul Krug man and I attribute this to his faulty understanding of basic human nature.  In short, he's a lousy economist despite having a Nobel Prize.  His Nobel was awarded to recognize a complex, arcane econometric method he devised that doesn't need a background in human nature for its creation.

 

 
From: Lionheart16 DelphiPlus Member Icon Posted by host3/17/17 3:29 PM 
To: Lucy 2005-2017 RIP (JUNODOG)  (4 of 7) 
 19298.4 in reply to 19298.3 

Lucky Lucy's Dad (JUNODOG) said...

As a one time licensed insurance agent, I believe that risk pools can be set up within a population in the hundreds of millions such that only people in their fertile years share the cost risks of bearing children and keeping them healthy. This coverage could easily be an add-on to general medical coverage such that the twenty eight year old healthy female could share general medical risks with old folks like me.  

I can believe that it is possible to have different risk pools.  The question is whether it would be easy and efficient to administer.  There is also the question of diversification.  When I was teaching statistics, I asked my students to consider a portfolio of casualty insurance--insurance against fire, floods, etc.  If we have different risk pools, let's say pools by neighborhood or geographical area, the risks within each pool would be more uniform, thus making the pricing also more uniform.  However, the risks will be less diversified.  If there is a wild fire spreading in some place in Colorado, it is unlikely that a neighborhood in California is experiencing the same problem.  It is the same way with health insurance.  Should there be a new epidemic in America, it may hit the different age groups rather differently.  The epidemic could be related to opioid overdose, or it can be related to Alzheimer.  In any case, administrative ease aside, there are benefits of being diversified in terms of age groups, genders, ethnicities, etc.

 

 
From: Bike (URALTOURIST1) DelphiPlus Member Icon3/17/17 3:38 PM 
To: Lionheart16 DelphiPlus Member Icon  (5 of 7) 
 19298.5 in reply to 19298.2 

I agree with the lady on Viagra, I do not think the public should fund recreational meds.

 

Warren
 
USCG Engineer 1961-1982
 
 
 

 
From: Lucy 2005-2017 RIP (JUNODOG)3/18/17 7:34 PM 
To: Lionheart16 DelphiPlus Member Icon  (6 of 7) 
 19298.6 in reply to 19298.4 

I can believe that it is possible to have different risk pools.  The question is whether it would be easy and efficient to administer. 

Thanks to amazing computer systems and brilliant programmers, delineating differing risk pools is both simple and easy.  As an example, look at life insurance. Male and female are two separate risk pools and within them are smokers and non-smokers.  Age is also considered and determines the initial premium.  Other than stepped premium term policies, most whole life insurance continues at the initial premium for as long as the insured makes his regular payments.

I take blood thinners.  Therefore I am normally considered "uninsurable."  But a couple of years ago I was offered life insurance but at a price that reflected my age and health.  It was something like $300 a month for $25,000.  It could not be read off a chart.  My application went to the company's underwriting department for evaluation and computation of premium.

 

 
From: Lucy 2005-2017 RIP (JUNODOG)3/19/17 6:26 PM 
To: Bike (URALTOURIST1) DelphiPlus Member Icon  (7 of 7) 
 19298.7 in reply to 19298.5 

I do not think the public should fund recreational meds

Well, first off, sex is not necessarily always strictly "recreational."  Sex can be a chore sometimes and not very pleasurable at all for one or the other participants while still producing a pregnancy.

So, with that in mind, should insurance pay for a medicine that treats painful intercourse for a female? There are prescription cremes that can alleviate that pain in an (usually) older female.

What if a seventy year old man marries a thirty year old woman and she wants his children and he can't get the job done without Viagra or something similar?

 

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