1.17.2009

Who's Afraid of a Little Competition?

Hat tip: Drinking Liberally in New Milford. Thanks Stephen.

That would be....drumroll please....free market capitalists. Ah, yes, the debate over public vs. private medical insurance has come full circle to the truth. The truth being that previous arguments against national health care plans has nothing to do with worries of socialism, with worries of decreased care, choice, and increased costs.

Oh no, they finally came out with it. Private insurance simply can't compete.

From the New York Times:

Mr. Daschle, the point man for Mr. Obama’s campaign to revamp the health care system, supports the concept of “a government-run insurance program modeled after Medicare.” It would, he says, give consumers, especially the uninsured, an alternative to commercial insurance offered by companies like Aetna, Humana and WellPoint.

But the proposal is anathema to many insurers, employers and Republicans. They say the government plan would have unfair advantages, like the ability to impose lower fees, and could eventually attract so many customers that private insurers would be driven from the market.


This is true - giving patients and citizens a choice in insurance coverage and service rendered, they will indeed choose the plan that is the least expensive, with the best results. The low cost/best competitive service mantra is the battle cry of capitalists, isn't it?

Apparently not.

Of course we all know we are being gouged with medical costs, from the doctor's bills to the outrageous premiums, we are being killed off one by one. Financially speaking. I have said over and over again that large health care plans like this give the patient the best bang for their buck. The larger the pool, the lower the costs become.

And again, I'm being proven correct by the amount of fear shown by private industries. Why doesn't anyone listen to me?

From the article:

“Many of the private plans are poorly managed,” he said. “They are the General Motors of medical care delivery. Medicare is paying the right amounts. To suggest that a heart surgeon has to make $600,000 or $700,000 a year, as opposed to only $400,000 under Medicare fees, does not get much sympathy from me.”


Nor I. The fact of the matter is that everyone at the top is being grossly overpaid. I think that with the collapse of almost every major company in the US at the moment, this would be obvious. this was obvious to me some time ago. The medical industry is no different.

Of course, the reaction is:

Scott P. Serota, president of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, whose member companies insure one-third of all Americans, said: “I’m not worried about our ability to compete on a level playing field. I am worried that a public program would have marketplace advantages that make private plans noncompetitive.”


Now, what he meant to say was that having a very large, well organized company - whether private or public - coming in and not playing by their rules to line their pockets with profits creates an unfair advantage. Or, in short, having real competition just isn't fair.

Now the objections to the health care plan are oh-so-clear to me. It has everything to do with the fear of being outed for the crooks they are. See, when people start to realize that the capitalist mantra of free markets and competition are no more than a rouse, they will begin asking for fair prices, lower profit margins, CEO wage caps, higher worker wages, and real, honest to goodness financial competition.

And these companies can't have that, now can they.

It's like pulling Oz out from behind the big curtain. Whoops! I smell fraud! And we have been ignoring it for far too long.

In the end, people will still have to make a choice between private or public health care. In the end, the market will be forced back down to reasonable rates, and thus truly competitive. In the end, the medical industry as a whole will have been taken down a peg or two, make a little less profit, be a little worse for the wear, but overall still there.

If they choose to compete.

The rest of us will be a bit happier, a bit healthier, and a bit wealthier for it.

24 comments:

The Black Critic said...

Great post. It good to see someone exposing the true motivation behind the overwhelming opposition to universal health care.

kerrjac said...

Medical care is expensive because as a service it costs a lot to produce. For example, if it didn't cost so much - in both money and time - to become a doctor, then they wouldn't demand such high salaries. Likewise for producing drugs. Insurance can help defray the costs somewhat through a complicated averages game - but to be successful, insurers have to keep on top of social trends and science, and at times charge more for some customers; I wouldn't trust the gov't to do that.

Ultimately tho it kind of doesn't matter who pays for medical care, be it the insured, patients, or every citizen thru income taxes. It still costs society an arm and a leg, and all the resources going towards paying it are being drained from better usages. The challenge should be to lower the real price of health care. It's very possible b/c as tech & innovation progress, industries become more efficient. Just look at computers. Centralized medical care, however, doesn't provide any inventive to head in that direction.

Anok said...

tBC, thanks!

Kerrjac - I see that you are still under the illusion that medical costs actually cost what insurers tell you they cost.

Yes, some aspects of medical care is expensive - research, for example. (research, by the way, is often funded by government grants).

The rest is no more or less than any other profession. A doctor's pedigree takes no more or less time or money than say - an engineer's. Nor does completion of medical school guarantee the patient that the doctor is marginally more competent than a failed student. (A doctor with a C- is still called "doctor).

The average medical school costs about $25k per year - the same as engineering schools, law schools (if not less than law school, actually) and many other professions.

Most medical personnel in offices and hospitals are not in fact doctors, and have taken basic courses in nursing, assistance, office management etc...and thus the doctor's cost is not reflective in a hospital or doctor office environment.

Medical costs are high because of:

Inflated profit margins (for hospitals/doctors, and insurance co's).

Malpractice suits and negligent/substandard care.

Inflated employee compensation for higher ups, doctors, and CEO's.

Ineffective organization of data, research, and archives.

Insurance companies who routinely deny coverage of claims for extended periods of time throw a wrench in the works by holding up the billing process (imagine if you could systematically deny payment of bills for a specific amount of time - and how that would affect the costs of the company you refuse to pay).

The rate of uninsured and underinsured due to prohibitive costs or policy requirements (refusal to cover policy holders because of preexisting conditions) raises the cost of medical care because the uninsured do not use preventive medicine, thus requiring massive care for catastrophic illnesses, increasing costs.

I have medicare/medicaid. I'll compare my experiences:

Choice of doctors - is the same in number of the PPO's, and often in doctors themselves.

Ease of use - I have no problems using my insurance. No hang ups, no fine print.

Cost - very, very low.

On the insurance en d of it - doctors are paid in a timely manner - unlike private insurance co's who deny claims regularly, causing billing problems for me.

The fact of the matter is that public insurance has proven that the medical and insurance agencies have been gouging us for all these years. The private industry is now afraid that they will be outed for the frauds they are.

too bad for them - I'm not going to cry about it.

kerrjac said...

The difference between an MD and an engineering degree is that the world is not starved for engineers in the same way that it's starved for doctors. Look at the IT sector - as the PC emerged, schools offering IT graduate degrees grew exponentially. And when a resource is scarce - be it a material such as gold, or a service such as internal medicine - it's more expensive, no questions asked.

If the current system somehow allowed a hospital to supply inexpensive medical care, then they would, because then they'd get more customers & make a higher profit.

Lastly, your medicare/medicaid is not "very very cheap", it's just that society as a whole is footing the bill rather than you yourself. In all likelihood, this makes medicine more expensive for everyone, b/c society still lacks an adequate number of doctors and money-saving solutions, & w/such a missallocation of scarce resources, there are less incentives to make healthcare more affordable, and there are even in-built incentives to make healthcare more expensive. If you're paying the bill, then you're going to discriminate between cost-saving measures; if government is paying bill, they're less likely to worry about price.

Healthcare these days *should* be a very profitable business, b/c so many people are entering into it. Instead, it's set up as a diseconomy of scale.

Anok said...

The difference between an MD and an engineering degree is that the world is not starved for engineers in the same way that it's starved for doctors.

That has absolutely zip to do with actual cost. Saying that doctors should be able to charge outrageous amounts because they are in high demand is what's artificially inflating the medical costs right now.

The cost to obtain a medical degree has not changed.

If the current system somehow allowed a hospital to supply inexpensive medical care, then they would, because then they'd get more customers & make a higher profit.

Actually, they wouldn't. They would have smaller profits. Everyone uses the hospital, whether they have insurance or not - it isn't the lack of usage driving up costs.

Lastly, your medicare/medicaid is not "very very cheap", it's just that society as a whole is footing the bill rather than you yourself.

Uhm, yeah, that's why it's cheap. Everyone knows that group rates are lower. That's why insurance companies offer group rates to employers - it guarantees them a specific amount of premiums, and employees get a lower rate than if they bought it at a single payer rate.

That's why a national health care program will offer the lowest rates.

it's also cheaper because medicaid/medicare refuses to pay inflated rates at hospitals and Dr's offices. Private insurance could do the same, but then they wouldn't get to inflate their rates.

In all likelihood, this makes medicine more expensive for everyone, b/c society still lacks an adequate number of doctors and money-saving solutions, & w/such a missallocation of scarce resources, there are less incentives to make healthcare more affordable,

All evidence is to the contrary. No matter how many times you tell yourself that, it's very clear that the private insurance in this country are afraid because they can't compete - and all evidence in other countries with national health care industries show that their medical costs have not become "more expensive". Sorry, but you'll just have to accept that it's not true.

Healthcare these days *should* be a very profitable business, b/c so many people are entering into it. Instead, it's set up as a diseconomy of scale.

No, it shouldn't be a very profitable business. It should turn a small profit, and nothing more than that. Health care is not an industry of leisure. It is an industry - and a service - to help people live and be healthy, not to make a profit from their sickness. Profit is not the purpose of health care.

Not in any part of history has medical aid - from shamanism on up - been about profit. Until capitalists got their hands on it.

I have worked in the insurance industry - I am licensed, and I know the laws and practices well. These companies have no fear of anything but real competition, and all of the bologna about lack of adequate care and rising costs that you hear (and are parroting) are nothing more than a smoke screen.

Group rates a cheaper - medical costs are expensive because they are artificially inflated, and low premiums and excellent care are in fact possible.

The national health care plan being proposed will indeed show that to be true. And that's why the private sector is crying in their cheerios right now.

kerrjac said...

Hi Anok, lively discussion, thanks for the replies, sometimes it seems like the whole internet is devoid of real conversation.

Getting back to medical care...

Valuable scarce goods cost more, that's not so much an economic axiom, it's a basic fact of life. Here we're talking about a scarcity of doctors' time. I'm not sure what else there is to say aside from that if we had more doctors, they would charge less. We're really not producing many new doctors these days. There aren't many medical schools in the country, most schools have small graduating classes, and they're extremely selective meaning that the vast majority of people who want to be doctors are denied. Likewise, it takes years and tons of money to create new drugs, thanks to over-regulation from the FDA.

I'm also not sure why you think that only leisure industries should turn a profit.

The worst thing that you can do for a sector is to limit its ability to profit. I think 20th century history bears this out pretty well, from the USSR and communist China to South America. It wasn't just the leisure industries that were affected in those countries.

Medical breakthroughs this century have also increased the price of healthcare. Without such breakthroughs, people would simply die younger and healthcare would be cheaper b/c it wouldn't work. Only from a national perspective medical breakthroughs are a double-edged sword. What's responsible for these breakthroughs? We can afford to fund them - be it w/private or public funds - b/c of the overall opulence of society. But if it's impossible to profit from these innovations, then there will be fewer efforts to undertake them. & the majority of people will move to more profitable sectors.

The analogy to shamanism is useful for drawing contrasts w/today's society. In a small community, inefficiency is no big deal, b/c it's only multiplied over a few people. Communism works better in a small community as well. But when you multiply inefficiency over half a billion people, you're suddenly paying a considerable price.

Communism & nationalization, I believe, often works for a few years. If you freeze prices on a good, then at first it wouldn't matter, b/c the price it was at roughly represents its present value. The problem is that values of goods constantly change - society and the world change - and all the while, you're artificially keeping the price the same. Communism eventually fails b/c it assumes that these values are fixed in an ever non-changing world. Having seen the dreadful fruits of all sorts of communism & socialism in other countries, I'm not sure why you'd want to apply it to healthcare.

I still fail to see how universal healthcare makes things less expensive. Medicare & social security (not private insurers) are currently set to lose tons of money b/c of an influx of elderly. Private insurance thrives on greater numbers, but somehow medicaid doesn't. It's set to become a huge liability, increase the national debt, and worsen inflation, a price everyone will have to pay.

Anok said...

I know you fail to see how public health care will make things less expensive. That's what I've been explaining to you. It's a combination of huge resources (a large group or pool, making costs lower for the individuals the same way employer based health care does), combined with not making a profit from sickness, and refusing to pay artificially inflated prices.

That lowers cost. Amazingly enough, without breaking down society.

And again, most of what you have stated is pure rhetoric. The doctors are not a commodity that can charge based on "availability". National health care, or controlling profits on necessary commodities to keep the greedy companies in check so that the average person can reasonably survive is not communism.

It's what we have to do to protect ourselves in the day and age of corporate entitlement. Entitled to profit from your need to live, that is.

Health care should not turn a profit like it has been because it is a necessary commodity. Medicine, access to health care, emergency services, long term care, short term care - turning it into a for major profit business guarantees that people (like about 50 million Americans) will not be able to afford insurance, get help, or receive adequate care.

because when you don't have enough money to pay, you get nothing. When you don't have insurance, you get to wait for hours - and possibly die in the waiting room.

There is no way that people's lives should be held hostage for the almighty dollar, sorry.

What you're being told about the health industry isn't true - and the new apparent and very truthful fear being shown by the private sector is the truth.

Just go back and read what they're saying - all of the old rhetoric has been abandoned, and the new complaint is that it's not "fair". They won't be able to turn a profit. They'll have to lower their prices.

No more complaints like ones you're using (which are false, anyway - and anyone in the business knows that).

Just fear.

Noarch said...

Great article Anok,
I live in Montreal,Quebec, Canada. All residents receive "free health care" and it works great. Of course some people still complain about the huges taxes taken off their salaries, until their child/wife/husband/mother/etc gets sick and all their medical bills are covered. Nowadays, with the increase off diseases like cancer, paying the medical out of our pockets would simply ruin most, that is if you can even afford these bills.
So, yes it does come with a cost, but it is simply worth it.
There are also private companies for the foreign students and people with no residency yet, but the prices aren't that high since the "market" is fair.
i also agree with you when you say that health industry shouldn't be a profitable business. Come on, we are dealing with lives here! Not everyone is rich/can afford health care. Should we just let them die and say "oh well we was poor"?

kerrjac said...

"It's a combination of huge resources (a large group or pool, making costs lower for the individuals the same way employer based health care does), combined with not making a profit from sickness, and refusing to pay artificially inflated prices." --> That sounds a lot like Soviet Russia to me, it didn't work then, I'm not sure why it'd work here.

I mean, if you want to talk about rhetoric, I think it should be a rule that whenever anyone proposes centralization they address why similar policies didn't work in the past and why in contrast it would work now. The USSR was one of the most resource-rich countries in Europe and similar to what you're proposing, it centralized its resources into a "huge pool" - one of the largest pools the world's ever seen. And they payed the price, as more people died and starved than the holocaust.

As for the shortage on doctors, here's a good jumping point from the New York Times: http://www.ajc.com/news/content/health/stories/2008/12/16/doctor_shortage_health_care.html

As for the insurance companies not being able to compete, of course they won't, b/c every citizen will be required to buy into medical care. I'm not sure where you're getting at w/that. It would be like if the government required everyone to spend $100/week at Safeway, Giant and other supermarkets would be pretty pissed.

Yes medical care is necessity, but in my mind, all the more reason to keep the government out.

Regarding Noarch's anecdote and "So, yes it does come with a cost, but it is simply worth it.": The problem is that overly expensive costs that are spread over society and they can really degrade things. Unnecessary taxes and inflation hinder the economy, and cause unemployment. So while you might have appreciated your medical care, and you didn't mind yourself paying the extra income tax - and many others might not mind paying the extra tax - it's still a huge drain on society, particularly businesses looking to hire workers.

The pricing of goods isn't determined by how necessary they are for life, it's determined by demand and by the resources that went into producing it. The bottom line is that many resources in this world aren't as plentiful as people would like. Say we happen to find 100 special rocks in the ground each of which could add 10 years to only 1 dying patient. Then this treatment would be extremely expensive, b/c it's so limited. The poor won't be able to afford, many of the rich won't either. That's b/c its pricing - in a free market - isn't based on how much people need it. The good news is that many advances aren't so either/or, as we're often able to adjust, put more capital into this or that resource, and slowly but surely drive down the price. But this doesn't happen thru gov't centralization - or at the least, it's never worked thru centralization.

Noarch said...

Do I mind paying extra taxes? Of course I do. I think everyone does. Im working hard and the gov. puts its hand in my pockets and takes what it wants. But I do know it's necessary.
Picture the father that is living in the states, worked his whole life and manages to put together a small amount for his children. suddenly his wife has a rare tumor. The poor guy will pay everything he has in order to save her. At the end he will be on the street with his whole family.
Concerning drains on society. Don't start with health care, start with wars. Are you saying that wars are more important than health? Why doesn't the states have more money for health, education and such? They fighting all the time. Spending millions on tank, assault choppers,jets.
And if they did find those 100 special rocks. I know that would sure raise the crime level. Drug or war lords wanting to live forever would surely be ready to blow some stuff up in order to get these rocks. Crime level up = more money to counter teorist = less money again for health.It works through centralization. Lets take old cuba for example. Was the country great? No but one thing was for sure. Everyone had access to a doctor and everyone had food in their mouths and everyone was educated. Now the capitalists will say yes but...? Yes but what? We got so used to the rich lifestyle and american dream that it's never enough. Wherever there's money to be made, we are like roaches. Even if it means letting the ones not so fortunate as us die in a a dark corner.

Pentad said...

Exactly! Ah, this was 'gold', Anok...pure Gold.

kerrjac said...

Soviet Russia had its industries as well - particularly making military equipment. But that doesn't mean that we should copy their model for that sector. The gov't simply drained its economy of most essential resources, and poured a disproportionate amount into producing military stock. Likewise w/Cuban healthcare. What they have in abundance in healthcare they lack 3-times in other necessities. Otherwise people wouldn't be illegally fleeing from the country.

You're right that the war on drugs - and all sorts of other unnecessary wars - are an incredible waste of money. But here's where I disagree: "Crime level up = more money to counter teorist = less money again for health". That *would* be an accurate picture from a communist/socialist perspective, b/c what the gov't spends on one thing, it can't spend on another. But in the vast majority of economic systems, money - the value that it represents - isn't a zero-sum game.

The US is able to engage in such wasteful spending b/c it has a tremendous amount of capital. It's collected this capital from every other area of the economy that was able to operate under a free market with predictable laws covering basics like private property. Our gov't has been able to collect more money from skimming off the profits of successful business enterprise.

The problem is that the gov't can only skim off so much from the economy before it starts hurting the economy more than its helping citizens in need. Oftentimes, for instance, gov't will earn more money from lowering taxes, b/c the lower rates boost the economy, such that the gov't is taking a slightly smaller % from a relatively larger profit.

I'm not sure why you're so fearful of profits. Certainly you enjoy some sort of income & the added benefits it brings. & it's really not the $ that people are after, it's the value that it represents. Under various situations countries have engaged in hyper-inflation to the extent that the life savings of people from every class were wiped out in a few months. Likewise, there's no point in having $ - even if it's a stable currency - & there's nothing to buy. In other words, people are only attracted to $ when it can get them something, and you need a strong economy for this.

Noarch said...

The Gov't ain't really skimming it is taking. I'm thinking of towns like Detroit or Baltimore. When you look at these cities, you can see that there are no funds being invested there. Except maybe from the large industries. When you look at t hese cities, you see that they are being left out because the gov't has "other/better" priorities.
The us doesn't really have all that tremendous capital since that now they are in debt and all we hear is economical crisis.
I am not fearful of profit and I do enjoy the benefits that come with it. But my income is nothing compared to the income of the "I never have enough money" companies. These people have millions, they could cash in their money and have a great life. Instead they always want more, thus complaining about the govt wanting to take over health care.
Again concerning my income. Im like 95% of the people spoiled by the "superflues " of this world. Nice cars/nice house/etc... But I wouldn't mind trading all that in if we were living in a communist society. A the end of the day these things don't give you happiness, just a feeling of power because everyone looks at you when drive by in that nice mercedes.

Anok said...

Kerr - you do realize that soviet Russia isn't the last place on earth or time period where this type of concept was used, right? I mean - Canada, Iceland, Switzerland, Sweden, England - all countries who have adopted a national health care system - all successful - not one is communist.

And no - Obama's health care proposal does not force everyone to buy into it. The public health care will be as much of a choice as private health care is. If you want it, you go with them. If not, go with someone else.

You're not paying attention to the truth. Please, for your sake, stop listening to rhetoric.

And fear of profit has nothing to do with it. A fear of profit over people does - and all you need to do is look at how well greed does for all of the corporations failing miserably right now, along with our economy.

Profit over people = epic fail. Always has.

Monkey Wrench said...

You win again Anok. well done. Thoughtful and meaningful and true. Keep on.



Another comrade,

Wrench

Anok said...

I like winning LOL. Or, that's what my husband would have you think, anyway ;)

It's amazing, isn't it? I kind of like watching the squirming. Which is bad, but fun.

kerrjac said...

On the topic of me, you're right that I need to attend more to the details of his plans...sometimes I can get out of touch with the news. But I try to keep my mind open & prevent my opinions from solidifying. More importantly tho I think we're all more interested in the issues at hand than each of our opinions, so perhaps that should remain the focus, b/c I genuinely want to learn.

Yes none of those countries are communist, but they are taking money from free markets & using it to pool together their resources for non-free markets...a "mixed economy" is the buzz word for this these days. But without capital from better run aspects of the economy, there's no way for them to succeed.

Regarding capital & profit, the US does have a lot of it. The absolute value of the debt doesn't have any meaning, it's a question of debt as a % over measures like GDP, & where the $ is owed. Which isn't to say it's not a problem, just that a trillion dollars in US debt isn't the same as a trillion dollars in private enterprise debt. That's why most economists are more annoyed than alarmed by debt these days (b/c the % of debt/GDP is growing) similar to inflation.

Returning to healthcare tho, that's the $ that largely funds programs like medicaid & social security, which are thought to have a large impact on future debt. Not only that, but the baby boomers are largest and wealthiest age group in the US, which means that overall measures like GDP are going to suffer when they retire.

ker said...

Scrolling down on your blog I'm trying to reconcile your comments above w/your distrust of monopolies (e.g., given that the vast majority of monopolies these days are state-run)...Perhaps an idea for a new post?

Anok said...

Kerr, yes there is a shift to mixed economies and generally speaking it seems to be the best solution thus far to the problems that many countries are facing.

I think it's fair to say that purely capitalistic economies are just as bad as purely socialistic economies. Extremes in either case tend to be bad for people, in general. Free market capitalism relies on a boom and bust model, while socialism is stifling. Neither offer the right amount of choice and economic stability that people need to survive and progress, nor the stability a country that needs to remain viable in a time of global conflict.

So the best solution is to take the best ideas from both models. I see it as being rather successful so far. Not so much for companies who rely on mass profits, but certainly better for people, in general.

Anok said...

Ker, historically speaking in the US 99% of monopolies have been privately owned, not federally owned. Further more, monopolies that are resurfacing now are privately owned. (Many are the same companies and/or industries that had been broken up by the government). A short list of monopolies in the US include:

* The salt commission, a legal monopoly in China formed in 758.
* British East India Company; created as a legal trading monopoly in 1600.
* Dutch East India Company; created as a legal trading monopoly in 1602.
* U.S. Steel; anti-trust prosecution failed in 1911.
* Standard Oil; broken up in 1911.
* National Football League; survived anti-trust lawsuit in the 1960s, convicted of being an illegal monopoly in the 1980s.
* Major League Baseball; survived U.S. anti-trust litigation in 1922, though its special status is still in dispute as of 2008.
* United Aircraft and Transport Corporation; aircraft manufacturer holding company forced to divest itself of airlines in 1934.
* American Telephone & Telegraph; telecommunications giant broken up in 1982.
* Microsoft; settled anti-trust litigation in the U.S. in 2001; fined by the European Commission in 2004, which was upheld for the most part by the Court of First Instance of the European Communities in 2007. The fine was 1.35 Billion USD in 2008 for incompliance with the 2004 rule.[9][10]
* De Beers; settled charges of price fixing in the diamond trade in the 2000s.
* Joint Commission; has a monopoly over whether or not US hospitals are able to participate in the Medicare and Medicaid programs.
* Telecom New Zealand; local loop unbundling enforced by central government.
* Deutsche Telekom; former state monopoly, still partially state owned, currently monopolizes high-speed VDSL broadband network.[11]
* Monsanto has been sued by competitors for anti-trust and monopolistic practices. They hold between 70% and 100% of the commercial seed market.
* AAFES has a monopoly on retail sales at overseas military installations.
* GameStop has a near exclusive control over the sale of used games, and frequently buys out competing companies.
* SAQ has a monopoly as it is the only chain of stores where alcohol can be sold in Quebec



Right now the telecommunications monopoly is making a comeback, as AT&T has been busy buying up telephone and cell phone companies up. Our utilities companies here are monopolistic, as we have only one electric company, and one gas heat company. Our cable companies have reduced the choice from at least 2 local cable, and several digital cable choices down to 2, one local and one digital. And our local cable company was bought out by a larger company some years ago.

While I distrust monopolies, I distrust the private sector even more because they are the ones who have typically formed monopolies for the sake of making a higher profit by eliminating competition.

The reason I agree with the state based insurance program that Obama is putting forth is because it is competitive, honestly competitive, and should bring about some real choices for consumers. Because the state based program will not be focused on making profits, it will force other industries to lower their prices to compete, which should undo the outrageous amounts of money required along with stifling restrictions placed on policy holders bringing a bit more honesty to the industry.

Connecticut Man1 said...

The republican POV: "AAACK! It's socialism!"

No. Russia had socialized medicine but none of the American plans that have been proposed are socialism. They are single payer. Sorry to bust the Frank Luntz frame up.

The fact that it will save BILLLIONS of dollars for American taxpayers - and the bulk of that money won't come out of a Doctor's pay, it will come straight form the insurance companies - takes the immoral action of rationing health care for profit out of the loop.

Death By Spreadsheet has got to end.

The days of some corporation giving out bonuses to people because they denied health care to patients, health care the patients had paid for no less, has got to end.

Ethan said...

Please join me in a campaign for "Universal National Single Payer Health CARE For Everyone NOW"
If you do the 2 steps posted in my article I will link to your website as a thank you for your ACTION. here's the article:
http://www.wholenessblog.com/resources-products/join-this-campaign-universal-national-single-payer-health-care-for-everyone-now

Tag You're It

Anok said...

CT Man - hey, thanks for popping in, and thanks a bunch for the tip. Yup - anything that might foster well being of the entire population is socialist, and therefore bad.

What a world ;P

Ethan, thank you for stopping in, good luck with your petition!

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