Sunday, December 30, 2012

The next gun control angle – insurance scam


The tide has been turning rather quickly against the gun grabbing gang as the year draws to a close, and they’ve clearly noticed. With nearly three quarters of all Americans opposed to a ban on handguns, and a slim majority even opposing bans on so called “assault rifles,” Second Amendment opponents find themselves in need of more “creative” ways to go after your guns. The latest one being picked up from the reliable liberal arsenal and dusted off is the idea of forcing legal gun owners to purchase liability insurance for their weapons. This brainstorm is brought to you by Megan McArdle.
Novel gun control ideas continue to percolate through the commentariat. The latest idea is requiring liability insurance for gun owners, which seems to have first been suggested by John Wasik blogging at Forbes. Reihan Salam, one of my favorite thinkers, says it’s an idea seriously worth considering.
So… insurance. Well, insurance is supposed to help people, right? Maybe she’s just trying to make people’s lives better, not trample on their rights. Let’s read on.
In the end, I think it might be a fine idea to help a small number of people, but it wouldn’t do what proponents are imagining in terms of controlling criminal behavior. Mostly, it would be a way to compensate some victims of gun accidents…
The first question we have to answer is why we want to require the insurance. There are three reasons I can think of:
1) it will simply raise the cost of owning guns to the point where people aren’t willing to do it.
2) It will pay for the harm caused by guns
3) It will make insurers into de-facto regulators.
I like this article. McArdle is actually quite refreshing in her approach. Rather than trying to sneak around and disguise her intentions behind compassionate sounding paeans to save the children, protect the mentally ill and eliminate the sale of Grand Theft Auto, the author comes right out and admits what was fairly obvious to the rest of us already. It’s not going to cut down on crime, it will pose a significant barrier to law abiding citizens who wish to purchase weapons and it will convert insurance companies into a tool for doing what Congress should be constitutionally barred from enacting. This kind of brutal honesty about your intentions is to be admired.

More @ Hot Air

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