okay i stole a couple of minutes between phone calls. let me answer quickly.
Originally Posted by Rob Instigator
Imagine if, instead of the local government's paying for public schools outright, they instead just passed a law stating that people had to pay for "insurance" in case their kids needed schooling. is that not just stupid and needlessly bureaucratic?
the "government" doesn't pay for schools "outright". people pay taxes, which in turn pay for schools. so everyone, even those who not use them, pay for public schools. and there is a mandate to educate all children-- either in public, private, or homeschools, everyone must comply.
if you don't like insurance, you have the option to pay a health care tax, which is the so-called penalty for not buying insurance in the market. so that way you can pay for health care "outright". so basicaly you have a choice between paying a tax ("outright") or buying insurance ("just in case").
of course the tax is small and not enough to cover everyone-- just the ones who skip out on their bills, in theory anyway.