That health care post going around LiveJournal


You can read the original here, but many of the folks reposting it are adding their own thoughts. In fact, I want to add so many thoughts that I’m just going to link to it rather than repost.

Yes, the GOP are being infuriating about health care reform. The Obama plan is, after all, largely drawn from the GOP plan offered as an alternative to ClintonCare and from Mitt Romney’s state plan. The individual mandate, which everyone on the right is so freaked about, was originally suggested by The Heritage Foundation.

Obama expected that offering a conservative health plan would get bi-partisan support, but no. The Republicans are much farther to the right than they were 18 years ago. Also in our system, cooperation and compromise from the minority party won’t get them back into the majority; GOP leaders believe that the only way back to the majority is to oppose and obstruct everything. (Thank you, The Onion) And it’s not like the voters punished them last November.

The post also takes slams at the insurance industry, which is understandable. Their business model is based on only doing business with people who don’t need their services, and finding ways to give the boot to expensively sick people.

Can I also point out this: Americans Do Not Want Repeal?

But there’s an unacknowledged problem in the post which prevents me from reposting it. A huge part of the problem here is that all that health care spending we can’t afford? That’s someone’s paycheck. Not just the doctors and nurses, not just the drug company CEOs, but also the small medical suppliers, the people who build imaging devices, the physical therapists, the lab techs.

All that out-of-control spending that keeps people from going to the doctor? It’s someone’s salary, and that’s what makes it so tough to reign in the spending. Without spending controls, universal coverage won’t work (for the record: yes, the ACA does contain spending controls). Without universal coverage, spending controls won’t work (because if you tell doctors that Medicare will pay them less, they’ll stop seeing those patients).

It won’t be easy or fun, but we need to end the current system, which costs 20,000 lives a year (conservatively estimated), spends much more than we can afford, and suppresses the entrepreneurial instinct of so many people afraid to quit their corporate jobs.

Now I’m going back to my WIP. I’ll be skipping the Super Bowl today, unless my son remembers that he wanted to go out to a sports bar to watch.

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