I'm kind of disturbed that it isn't more obvious to everyone why Ron Paul voted "No" on the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act, so I've stuck the (simplified) reason in a new thread title for all to see. It appears that the emotional taboo associated with anything DNA-related has clouded peoples' ability to think clearly on this issue. If the bill had instead banned insurance companies from discriminating on the basis of weight, then I don't think anyone would be questioning Ron's vote, and yet the issues would be no different.
True, like most things the federal government regulates these days, there is no authority for it in Article 1 Section 8 of the constitution, and therefore it is a state issue, if a government issue at all.
But far more importantly, the bill is an assault on your freedom to negotiate with your insurance company and on your ownership of your own DNA. If you have wonderful DNA and would like to show it to your insurance company to argue for a lower premium, then too bad, the government has stepped in and said that isn't fair to those with bad DNA who can't likewise argue for lower premiums. If you were allowed to show insurers your good DNA, then those who *didn't* show their DNA would be suspected of having average or bad DNA and would continue getting higher premiums than you, and we can't have that, because we're all equal, right?
Well, the unintended consequence (or maybe not-so-unintended) of this bill is higher premiums for almost everyone: insurance companies will be forced to insure high-risk people they would not otherwise insure, or who would otherwise have to pay higher premiums. BUT, the insurance companies won't know *who* these higher-risk people are, so they will have to charge *everyone* higher premiums in order to make up for the losses on the high-risk people. That's equality for you.
As the premiums go up, of course, the clamoring for socialized medicine will grow, until finally the government steps in and saves the day from the greedy insurance companies who were crippled by the very same government from doing their job well, which was to assess individual health risk and efficiently assign insurance premiums accordingly. It's the same old story: the government screws around with something until the people have no choice but to let the government take it over completely. E.g., the government banned Americans from buying prescription drugs from overseas in the name of "safety", which eliminated competition and drove up domestic drug costs until people finally clamored for Medicare prescription drug coverage.
If you approve of this bill, then you are essentially supporting uniform premiums for everyone, because the only reason premiums EVER differ from one person to the next is because the insurance companies discriminated based on *something*: age, gender, weight, diet, physical activity, sports, etc. And if you favor uniform premiums for everyone, then there is no need for insurance companies at all, because their expertise is in assessing risk is irrelevant. We might as well have Hillary's or Obama's (and now McCain's) government health care plan.
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