Todays will not be a typical Sunday article and it will also be briefer. The right wing is trying to make it seem like there are huge differences among the Democratic candidates of consequence on health care. They are also trying to make the consensus Democratic health care platform seem radical and frightening; it is neither. With that in mind, let’s explore.
Timing and specifics may differ from candidate to candidate but all are committed to an eventual single payer cradle-to-grave system. The most popular current buzzword is Medicare-for-All. For all those free market worshiping right wingers the reality is that a for-profit system simply cannot compete with a government run system. For-profit entities need to make about 18-20% profit and tend to pay their top executives very high six and sometimes seven figure salaries. Government agencies operate on a cost covering basis and their very top people are lucky to be in the $200,000 range. Simply put their costs as significantly lower.
As a consumer, whether you purchase as an individual or an employer purchasing for your staff, why would you pay more for the same service for any length of time? The answer is you wouldn’t. There would be no need to force you to drop your private insurance; you will want to.
The other controversy is whether to cover undocumented people or tourists. This really isn’t an issue if you are capable of critical thinking and take a moment to do so. The abundantly simple answer is that it is in America’s interest to cover everyone regardless of citizenship or residency status. It is as simple as we all breathe the same air.
There is a simple question to ask the defenders of our, unique among similar major industrialized countries, for-profit health insurance system. Why do we have poorer outcomes at twice the cost? Don’t fall for the rhetoric that we have the world’s best health care system. That is demonstrable untrue!
Oh, here is a little supplemental economics lesson. Even if you, like most working age Americans, get your health care insurance via your employer you still pay for it. It is simply part of your compensation package just like your net pay. Your employer gets the money to pay the premiums from the fruits of your labor; the money doesn’t magically fall from the sky. If you pay for it by receiving an invisible deduction or a visible one (taxes could well go up under this plan) there is no net difference; unless of course the deduction is lower because the premium is lower which is by far the most likely outcome.
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