sitting on the edge of the sandbox, biting my tongue

February 13, 2012

“No-Cost Contraception” Is a Phony Women’s Issue.

Filed under: feminism, politics, society — Tags: , , , — edge of the sandbox @ 7:32 pm

One day the GOP will figure out how to frame the discussion of Obamacare’s contraception mandate in terms of religious and other freedom — or so I hope.  The Democrats and the left are talking about “women’s right to no-cost contraception”, and they are not doing American women any service.

Contraception mandate infringes on our freedoms.  The Catholic church is one example of an organization that objects to being forced to cover the cost of birth control.  But an employer concerned about potential negative effects of long-term use of the Pill, has no way of choosing a plan that does not cover this particular method.

Contraception mandates offer no choices to health care consumers.  Not all women of childbearing age are interested in purchasing contraception.  Many Catholic or Ultra-Orthodox Jewish women are not, and neither are lesbians.  Where are the discounted plans for them?

Nearly every time I turn on the radio, I hear a fire-breathing feminist going on and on about women’s rights.  But artificial birth control is not a right; it’s a good provided to us by the health care industry.  The pharmaceutical companies are not about to take it away from us; what’s at stakes is who will cover the cost.

Unfortunately, some of us women get so greedy when we hear promises of free birth control, that we stop thinking.  A prudent woman will think it through.  There is no such thing as “no-cost contraception” because the Pill, condoms and IUDs all have cost.  Who is paying for it and how?

The government loaded up our insurance policies with all sorts of mandatory coverage requirements.  These requirements drive up the premiums and leave a growing number of Americans without private health insurance, which is pretty scary for us mothers.  Catastrophic coverage with high deductibles makes the most sense for women of childbearing age.  We can pay for our birth control out of pocket — which would amount to — oh nos! — tens of dollars a month.  Witness the table:

Method Effectiveness Cost Per Year
Birth Control Pills 95 percent $160 to $600
Birth Control Patch 95 percent $160 to $600
Cervical Cap 77 to 83 percent $35 to $60
Condoms 85 percent $150
Diaphragm 85 percent $60
Fertility-Awareness 75 to 88 percent Free
IUDs 99 percent $100 (varies)
Shot (Depo-Provera) 99 percent $220 to $460
Sterilization 99 percent $30 to $200 (varies)
Vaginal Ring (NuvaRing) 95 percent $160 to $600
Vaginal Sponge 68 to 84 percent $500
Abstinence 100 percent Free

Ready to sell out for $10-$50?

UPDATE: Professor Jacobson writes that he (and Glenn Reynolds and Hot Air) were pointing out for quite a while now that the Democrats are framing contraception as a new culture war issue, something that I missed.

Nobody is taking away our family planning at this time; the markets are supplying American women with ever-increasing number of options.  However, I am opposed to giving the monopoly (or near-monopoly) on contraception distribution to a single agency, namely the government.  In such system , politically-connected patent holders of a particular method of birth control will be in a position to lobby the government to push their product at the expense of other methods.

UPDATE: many thanks to Professor Jacobson for the post of the day link!

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8 Comments »

  1. “Unfortunately, some of us women get so greedy when we hear promises of free birth control, that we stop thinking. A prudent woman will think it through. There is no such thing as “no-cost contraception” because the Pill, condoms and IUDs all have cost. Who is paying for it and how?”

    As you know, this has nothing at all to do with women’s rights or contraception. It is a frontal attack on our constitution. But let me share something I read the other day that brought it home for me: when we buy insurance, for example auto insurance. We don’t expect the insurance to cover oil changes or spark plug replacement or for tire replacement. The insurance is to cover major cost of damage to the body or frame. Why would anybody buy health insurance expect it to cover the cost of aspirin or contraception pills?

    Comment by Conservatives on Fire — February 14, 2012 @ 10:00 am

  2. abstinence free!..good point!

    Comment by Angel — February 14, 2012 @ 10:05 am

    • Jim,
      You are right, it’s not about health care at all. It’s about freedom and control. The kind of insurance that makes most sense is catastrophic coverage with high deductibles. I’ll budget for regular doc visits, occasional ear infections, vitamins and everything else myself.

      Angel,
      No kidding. Did you see Instapundit today? CDC expecting an outbreak of drug-resistant gonorrhea.

      Comment by edge of the sandbox — February 14, 2012 @ 9:10 pm

  3. “politically-connected patent holders of a particular method of birth control will be in a position to lobby the government to push their product at the expense of other methods.”

    Amen. And it’s them dang Republican men at fault. Otherwise, wouldn’t there be a daily pill for men to take by now?????

    wink

    Comment by nooneofanyimport — February 15, 2012 @ 8:29 pm

  4. Great post! You mentioned Prof. Jacobson’s insight regarding George S at the January 7 debate. I am a huge fan of his, too! Great minds think alike file: I want to invite your readers to check out the Teri O’Brien Show, Red State Talk Radio’s “Talk Show of the Year 2011.” We talked about that on my show a day before anyone else, on last Sunday, 2/12/12. Please listen here: http://teriobrien.com/2012/02/14/great-minds-think-alike-or-rush-with-obrien-echo-syndrome/

    Keep up the great work!

    Comment by Teri O'Brien — February 16, 2012 @ 5:46 am

  5. [...] Considering that it’s all going towards the government takeover of the private insurance business, there is no need to worry, because under the contraception mandate we can get the Pill free.  I mentioned it before, seeing how contraception is not prohibitively expensive, federal government is not inserting itself to solve any problems here.  Even if it were pricy, whether or not I use birth control and what kind, is between me, my husband and my doctor, and I’d rather keep the government out of it. [...]

    Pingback by Several Reasons Not to Love Government Healthcare? « sitting on the edge of the sandbox, biting my tongue — February 29, 2012 @ 11:38 am

  6. Try $120 a month for the Pill, depending on your plan. That’s what I paid for a while WITH health coverage, and it came out to over a $1000 a year. Don’t know about you, but that can be a lot of money for some of us. And if that’s expensive, think of the cost of having a kid. Then think of the divorce rate if all married couples who can’t afford kids or birth control practice the “free” method. And here I thought the GOP cared about marriage….

    Comment by M — November 1, 2012 @ 6:47 pm

    • M, my guess you are a virgin — otherwise you’d know how not to get pregnant. Last time I checked, the co-pay for the Pill at Kaiser was $10. Coincidentally, you won’t pay any more than that at Target, Wallmart, etc. without coverage.
      IUD is $800 without the coverage and it will last for up to 8 years, depending on the kind you chose. I assume you are not Catholic.
      Condoms are free at night clubs. If you can’t find them at the clubs, they are pretty inexpensive at CVS. If you tell the guy you are not on the Pill, and if he has something to lose (as in he’s gainfully employed or expects to be), he’ll pull a condom out of his valet.
      Another free, fail-proof (and non-hormonal) method is to get acquainted with your vaginal discharge.
      “Then think of the divorce rate if all married couples who can’t afford kids or birth control practice the “free” method.” Huh? People get divorced because they can’t afford birth control?

      Comment by edge of the sandbox — November 1, 2012 @ 9:34 pm


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