Apparently Denmark is imposing the world’s first ever “fat tax.” You can read all about it here. While I am in favor of taxing fat people for being fat, because they cost the rest of us money by soaking up social services like Medicaid and Medicare and drive up insurance premiums with their fatness, I think Denmark is going about this the wrong way. I have a much better way to get fat people to pay for being fat.
According to the article, Denmark instituted an increased tax on things like butter, cheese and lard. That’s all fine and good, but non-fat-pieces-of-crap eat butter and cheese and (maybe, on occasion in Europe) lard. The way to actually charge fat people for being fat is to simply add an extra premium to services like Medicare and Medicaid and welfare and section 8. You could call it the True Health Initiative Navigation premium (if you’re intelligent you picked up on the acronym there).
Rather than charging fat people an extra “tax” you charge it to everyone making use of government services and then you allow people who are in good health to have the premium waived. It’s like a “scholarship” I received when I attended the University of Colorado. Everyone from the state of Colorado received a “scholarship” for something like $2,000 for filling out some paperwork, except that if we didn’t fill out the paperwork we were charged the $2,000 as an add-on to our tuition. So it wasn’t really a scholarship so much as it was an added fee that people who lived in the state of Colorado were able to opt out of if they filled out the proper paperwork.
The THIN premium works for everyone. It’s a tax only placed on those who use government services like Medicaid, so the government can’t be accused of meddling in all of our lives. If you don’t want to pay the tax, don’t use the government service. It’s that simple. Plus it allows those who use the service to pay for it, rather than getting it for free. It also provides an incentive for fat people to get off their big, fat asses and lose the weight so they can get free healthcare. Everybody wins.
Here’s how it would work. If you apply for Medicaid or welfare (everyone is put on Medicare once they turn 65, so it requires a different system that I’ll get to later) you have to take a physical to qualify – I think the government does this anyway and if not they should. At the physical, you have to reach a certain level of physical fitness or at the very least physical OKness to live to be given clearance from the THIN premium. If a doctor certifies that you have reached this level, you get the premium waived and you can begin receiving your free government services.
Those who do not pass the test are placed at certain levels and depending on just how unfit they are, they can have a certain percentage of their THIN premium waived. Individuals can receive up to 60 percent of their THIN premium waived and can return every two months to have their health tested and receive increased reduction of their THIN premium. The government service begins once you pay your premium and anyone that doesn’t pay, doesn’t get the service.
As for Medicare, don’t touch it. There is no THIN premium for Medicare. People will lose their minds and this very, very intelligent plan will be voted down by fat old people. DO NOT TOUCH Medicare. No extra money, you get it when you turn 65, no physical necessary. Nothing to see here, folks, move along.
There will, however, be an additional child THIN premium that will be imposed and families whose children do not take or pass the THIN test will not be given the child tax credit when they file their taxes. This goes for everyone. You want the government to pay you for having children? Make sure you’re not stuffing them with doughnuts and lard and you’ll get it. You want to put your kid on Medicaid and make the rest of us pay for his or her healthcare? Make him run around outside once in a while.
This will totally get fat people motivated. And they can’t not have insurance, because it’s the law now that we all have to have it. So if they choose not to pay the THIN premium, they have to pay a fine on their taxes anyway. The plan will lower the overall cost of government services and simultaneously generate new revenues, which will immediately help lower our deficit. Why hasn’t anyone thought of this before? It’s so simple.Someone get the CBO on the phone to score this thing, stat.
There are so many fat assholes out there soaking up the free government dough. Now, they can either contribute or get off their lazy asses and lose some of that fat. To paraphrase Jesse Ventura, “If you don’t want to pay the tax, lose some god damn weight, tubby.”
This is a simple concept and works much better than imposing a fat tax on everyone, because some of us can actually handle our butter and shouldn’t have to pay extra because Fatty McStuffmyface eats her feelings.