Law School Discussion

Poll

Should body fat percentage influence an employee's insurance premium?

No, group plans should charge all employees the same premium.
13 (36.1%)
No, but other things like smoking and drug use should.
4 (11.1%)
Yes, the fatter you get, the more you should pay.
16 (44.4%)
Yes, fat people should have to pay less.  They need the money for food.
3 (8.3%)

Total Members Voted: 36

Should Fat People Pay More?

Re: Should Fat People Pay More?
« Reply #30 on: March 23, 2009, 09:52:52 PM »
Its really not any different than higher auto insurance rates for males and younger people. Surely not all males are more accident prone than females, but stats show the the average male is in fact involoved in more accidents. Whether or not males deserve to be all be grouped together is simiar to whether or not fat people should be grouped together. So if there is overwhelming statistics that fat people consistantly require more medical attention, then I don't see how this would be any different than charging males higher rates for auto insurance.

Miss P

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Re: Should Fat People Pay More?
« Reply #31 on: March 23, 2009, 09:59:26 PM »
Its really not any different than higher auto insurance rates for males and younger people. Surely not all males are more accident prone than females, but stats show the the average male is in fact involoved in more accidents. Whether or not males deserve to be all be grouped together is simiar to whether or not fat people should be grouped together. So if there is overwhelming statistics that fat people consistantly require more medical attention, then I don't see how this would be any different than charging males higher rates for auto insurance.

One way that it's different is that auto insurance is mandatory while health insurance is not.  On the surface, that makes it appear more fair to charge different groups different prices for health insurance.  In reality, however, charging one group more for health insurance means that it is likely to pull out of the insurance pool altogether.  That's dangerous for everyone.

Kirk Lazarus

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Re: Should Fat People Pay More?
« Reply #32 on: March 23, 2009, 10:08:45 PM »
Its really not any different than higher auto insurance rates for males and younger people. Surely not all males are more accident prone than females, but stats show the the average male is in fact involoved in more accidents. Whether or not males deserve to be all be grouped together is simiar to whether or not fat people should be grouped together. So if there is overwhelming statistics that fat people consistantly require more medical attention, then I don't see how this would be any different than charging males higher rates for auto insurance.

One way that it's different is that auto insurance is mandatory while health insurance is not.  On the surface, that makes it appear more fair to charge different groups different prices for health insurance.  In reality, however, charging one group more for health insurance means that it is likely to pull out of the insurance pool altogether.  That's dangerous for everyone.

But if you accept iahurricane's proposition as true that fat people consistently require more medical attention, you would see a reduction in the overall quality of medical services if some of these people were not priced out of the market. In addition, their constant use of the medical system drives up costs for everyone (see economics on output). Finally, if you accept iahurricane's proposition, it would seem to me that rates would rise for everyone anyways. It would just mean that insurance companies would also raise them non-fat people in order to keep the rates equal. In effect, fat people (i hate that word, but no one has properly defined the group in the thread) would be free-riding at the expense of skinnier people.

At least that's how I see it, but I'm no expert.


Miss P

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Re: Should Fat People Pay More?
« Reply #33 on: March 23, 2009, 10:22:17 PM »
Its really not any different than higher auto insurance rates for males and younger people. Surely not all males are more accident prone than females, but stats show the the average male is in fact involoved in more accidents. Whether or not males deserve to be all be grouped together is simiar to whether or not fat people should be grouped together. So if there is overwhelming statistics that fat people consistantly require more medical attention, then I don't see how this would be any different than charging males higher rates for auto insurance.

One way that it's different is that auto insurance is mandatory while health insurance is not.  On the surface, that makes it appear more fair to charge different groups different prices for health insurance.  In reality, however, charging one group more for health insurance means that it is likely to pull out of the insurance pool altogether.  That's dangerous for everyone.

But if you accept iahurricane's proposition as true that fat people consistently require more medical attention, you would see a reduction in the overall quality of medical services if some of these people were not priced out of the market. In addition, their constant use of the medical system drives up costs for everyone (see economics on output). Finally, if you accept iahurricane's proposition, it would seem to me that rates would rise for everyone anyways. It would just mean that insurance companies would also raise them non-fat people in order to keep the rates equal. In effect, fat people (i hate that word, but no one has properly defined the group in the thread) would be free-riding at the expense of skinnier people.

At least that's how I see it, but I'm no expert.

I think you'd see serious drains on the health care system with uninsured fat people priced out of insurance and deferring medical treatment until they had serious illnesses treatable only with very costly interventions (most likely in emergency rooms, which we all pay for).  Fat or thin, healthy or sick, insured people's preventative use of the health care system drives catastrophic costs down for everyone.  Sick people are always going to get something out of risk-pooling.  The question isn't about who is going to pay for whom; the healthy always pay for the sick.  The question is about how to create a system that minimizes unnecessary expenses and allows the most people to get the care they need at the right time.  A system that insures more people and encourages preventative care and healthy lifestyles would be a good start.

I also agree with Matthies' fairness argument.  I just happen to think that this is a bad plan on the merits, too.

sheltron5000

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Re: Should Fat People Pay More?
« Reply #34 on: March 23, 2009, 10:35:24 PM »
I've only read this page so... whatever, I'm lazy.

The big problem with adjustable rates for health insurance is that it prices the people who cost the most out of paying at all. Take this example:

a fat person who has health insurance goes to the doctor. The doctor says "your fat and going to die." fat person goes to nutritionist/physical theropist etc, loses the weight, and  everyone is happy.

a fat person without insurance does nothing, has a heart attack and needs an emergency quadruple bypass (which hospitals are obligated by law to perform). They can't afford the bill, declare personal bankruptcy and stick the hospital with the bill. Everyone with insurance pays more.

That's the reality, everyone's healthcare costs are paid for somehow, do you want to pay yourself, or have them bear at least some of the cost? And a substantially lower cost at that.


The current schema, with non-obligatoryy insurance and rising costs, actually ends up more expensive for insurers because only unhealthy people waste their money on health insurance (since they're the only ones that need it), that's a big part of why it costs so much, and why I can't afford it.

This is wrong.

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Re: Should Fat People Pay More?
« Reply #35 on: March 23, 2009, 10:35:48 PM »
jack:

Quit being disingenuous, you twat.  You've thrown out this same "discussion" (or threads similar to it) a number of times.  Be blatant about your agenda and own it, dammit. 

Jesus, you annoy me.  You're worse than LawDog3.

Kirk Lazarus

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Re: Should Fat People Pay More?
« Reply #36 on: March 23, 2009, 10:37:05 PM »


Jesus, you annoy me.  You're worse than LawDog3.

this is wrong.

Miss P

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Re: Should Fat People Pay More?
« Reply #37 on: March 23, 2009, 10:39:43 PM »


Jesus, you annoy me.  You're worse than LawDog3.

this is wrong.

lol.

Oh, Galt, you're just saying that because you can't handle being repeatedly spanked by a black man.

This is wrong.

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Re: Should Fat People Pay More?
« Reply #38 on: March 23, 2009, 10:41:42 PM »

Kirk Lazarus

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Re: Should Fat People Pay More?
« Reply #39 on: March 23, 2009, 10:43:42 PM »


Jesus, you annoy me.  You're worse than LawDog3.

this is wrong.

lol.

Oh, Galt, you're just saying that because you can't handle being repeatedly spanked by a black man.

lol, I saw that in the other thread. I meant to tag it. It went from legal advice to contracts and then downhill from there. I had a good laugh when he said that to you.