Hey, remember when Nancy Pelosi triumphantly predicted that Obamacare would allow artists to have health insurance without worrying about their day jobs?
Think of an economy where people could be an artist or a photographer or, eh, a writer without worrying about keeping their day job in order to have health insurance….
It’s a dream come true, and you are subsidizing it, as this NY Times spotlight piece about two artists in Albequerque who quality for free Obamacare plans demonstrates:
Elisabeth and Mark Horst, artists in Albuquerque who earn $24,000 a year between them, qualified for a zero-premium plan.
I have nothing against the Horsts. Living and painting in Albuquerque is a dream for many people.
But why should the taxpayers have to subsidize what clearly is a lifestyle choice? The Horsts are not exactly uneducated or without choices in their lives.
Here’s a part of Mark Horst’s bio at his art website:
Mark Horst grew up in small town Minnesota. He studied pottery and printmaking in high school and college, but his encounter with Dorothy Day and the Catholic Worker led to years of very different work. After earning a Ph.D. in theology from Yale University, he spent time teaching and working toward neighborhood renewal in south Minneapolis. He pursued the craft of painting and drawing at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design and the New York Studio School. He lives in Albuquerque.
If paint were a means of freezing time and protecting us from the dangerous life of the spirit, I would put down my brushes. But, for me, painting is a way of breaking time’s grip and setting loose something wild and strong.
Elizabeth also is highly educated and closed her psychology practice to paint:
I studied philosophy at Yale, psychology at the University of Minnesota, and in addition have trained in Reiki, yoga instruction, and shiatsu. As for art… I taught myself to knit at the age of seven, designed and made my own clothes in high school, stitched a quilt while writing my senior essay in college. Fiber art has always been what I do when I am not required to be doing something else (and sometimes when I am). I began to sell my handwoven scarves at art fairs and farmers markets in 2002, and in 2003 closed my psychology practice to make art full time.
More power to the Horsts. But don’t ask me to subsidize their lifestyle choice. Or that of struggling rock musicians: