Conservatism starts with one simple idea. We should be free. Asked what freedom meant to her, Alena Fernandez, Daughter of Castro who escaped to America said:
“Everything. Even if you have to learn to risk in freedom. It is the most important thing in life. The possibility of making choices.”
For too many years, our choices have been limited by an over-reaching Federal Government. When my father started working, payroll taxes were 4%. Today, we pay 15.3%. Medicare is responsible for 2.9 % of this increase, but either way the amount we pay has increased dramatically.
In my grandfather’s time, when one was responsible for their own retirement, if times were bad or maybe you were unemployed, you had the freedom to draw on retirement savings to help you pay for what you considered important: Paying Health Insurance, Mortgage, Kid’s school, etc.
Why shouldn’t we have some of the same freedoms? For starters, I propose that people should be allowed to draw down on their Social Security to keep catastrophic health insurance active. Their retirement age would be delayed or their benefits reduced at time of retirement (unless they repay plus interest) to compensate for the funds withdrawn. If a person seeks aid from Medicaid or from their county hospitals, reimbursement would first come from their Social Security fund if they did not choose to purchase insurance. If they do not wish to use their fund, they may seek out charitable organizations to provide them with the desired services at reduced cost or free of charge.
It requires no one to purchase insurance. It only requires them to be responsible for their own bills and gives them the financial flexibility to be able to make their insurance payments if times are tough. While this is not the same amount of flexibility we would enjoy if there was no Social Security, as long as there is Social Security, this gives people some flexibility and expands freedom.