Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Framing your Health

clipped from volokh.com

A regulation which said that a Wellness Program may (or “shall”) include a discount for not owning a gun (or not owning a handgun, or not owning a so-called “assault weapon”, or for not owning more than a certain number of guns) might be argued to be “overly burdensome.” But there’s no guarantee that a reviewing court would consider a mere discount for people who don’t own guns to be “overly” burdensome on gun owners.

Notice that the discount mentioned here for not having a gun is the same thing as a penalty. The difference is only a matter of framing. You have to have health insurance and if you don't have a gun it will be 30% cheaper. If you go out and buy a gun you will have to pay 30% more. The difference comes in what you assume as the starting point, gun ownership or not, but the incentive effect is the same: have a gun, pay more.

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