National Health Care

health_care_reformMuch of the fuss over The Patience Protection and Affordable Care Act (“Obamacare”) could have been avoided by a genuine national health care system. The insurance industry is still running the show and doing very well by it. The debacle is NOT about national health care. It’s over a hybrid.

Real national health care is an expression of democracy (“government of, by, and for the people” – ALL the people), not its enemy. Built on the foundation of the old private insurance company system, The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was destined from its inception to be a mess.

Do I hear a “Yes!”? A “No!”? A yawn?

8 thoughts on “National Health Care

  1. Watching this for a long time now. Read the replies. There is much blame to go around – beginning the Pharmaceutical companies, for profit health care systems, and insurance companies that have lobbied our government so they do not have to bid to supply, but raise their prices even on long established medications when they know the government will be paying for them, also finding ways to alter the chemical composition of long known natural remedies so they can patent them, and thus make money from them, (Ironically, by isolating these compounds, instead of the whole herb, we lose the synergistic effectos of what was), and the rest of us consumers are spending our hard earned and saved dollars for what they tell us we need, (including the nasty side effects) instead of passing it on to our children and heirs unlike what was done to give them a hand up in past generations. All the money is floating to the top like cream, but I am of the opinion, this is some rotten cream.


    • Thank you, Karin, for your thoughtful response, especially the reminder of the pharmaceutical industry’s grip on the system and the pocketbook, the lobbying, the hold that for-profit companies and health care systems have on the public good. It’s not the cream that used to come to our doorsteps in glass bottles. It’s something else.


  2. No, it is not the insurance companies. Costs are up buy 30-40%, insurance companies profits are controlled and limited. I do not support the insurance companies but they are not the bogeyman. Who is making the money, hospitals. Do we really need 2 50 inch flat screens, a sofa and two chairs in a hospital room, that is the room at a new hospital where my father was during his recent illness. It is a mess because it is run by the govt. Why when the hospital screws up do we pay for it. Create a competitive environment where hospitals bid for business based on quality and price. The three places where we have let the govt run our economy, education, military and health care, costs are out of control and are run for the benefit of the providers not the beneficiaries.

    Govt run plans throughout the world are going bankrupt because the stakeholders have no interest in controlling cost and the system is controlled by incompetent bureaucracies. It will always be a mess. Medicare and Medicaid are bankrupt.

    Why the hell should my premiums pay for free contraception, maternity care, et al. If it is a social good, then pay for it through taxes not my health care premiums.

    The middle class is getting screwed by the ACA through higher premiums. Let me choose my own plan. Cost are out of control because those who benefit will lobby to include their benefits and there is no cost control. You really believe our Congress can manage 16% of the economy. They cannot manage the federal budget let alone health care.

    Patients have no incentives to control costs so it is overseen by a panel of experts, the same experts who created this mess. A single payer plan will fail just as this is failing. Insurance should be insurance, normal routine costs should be the responsibility of the beneficiary and if people need to be subsidized, then subsidize them. We are destroying the best health care system in the world through bureaucratic ineptitude and a President who is not smart enough to figure out he really is not that smart after all. There is a reason why Congress and the Administration exempts themselves from this disaster.


    • John, we disagree, but before I disagree agreeably (I hope), let me say flat out that government is NOT the reason that your father’s hospital room has two 50″ TVs, two chairs, and a sofa. The reason is “competition” with other hospitals who have the same or better and the race is on. Was that a government hospital? A VA Hospital? Or was it like one of the hospitals here in Minnesota, not government owned and not government run? I’ve never seen a law or regulation that requires a hospital to have two 50″ TVs, two new chairs and a sofa. “They’re not RUN by government. And, even if they were, the questions comes to mind, Would we prefer them to be like the hospitals that have no chairs or TVs, the hospitals in impoverished countries to which we Americans send our charitable contributions because we care for the poor? Here at home, I’m now on Medicare, and I’m glad I am. I could not afford private health care at this stage of my life. I’m GLAD it’s there, and, like Social Security, its a socialist program I’ve paid into for years. Members of my congregation, some of whom have NEVER had health care until they reached the age where they qualified for Medicare, now actually have a doctor. The same will be true of millions of people because of the Affordable Care Act. The private sector did not do that. Government did. OUR government did. Is it flawed? You bet. Does it stink? You bet. But it is it better than what we had before? Yes. It is. And if there were no attempt to level the playing field in this country, my guess is that your Dad and many others who can afford it would be staying in hospitals competing for dollars while the hospitals like the Hennepin County Medical Center in Hennepin County, MN swallow the costs of patients who don’t have health insurance.

      “Why the hell should my premiums pay for free contraception, maternity care, et al. If it is a social good, then pay for it through taxes not my health care premiums?” EXACTLY, John. That’s the way should be. THAT would be a national insurance program. As for the snipe at the President, John, it’s not pretty. It’s ugly. I expect better from my friend.

      A dinner party the other night had two Canadian guests. Both swear by Canada’s national health care system and can’t understand what’s going on in this country. They have better contained costs while meeting the needs of all of their people. Apparently some “government bureaucracies” do a better job than the competitive private sector.


    • John, you don’t sound like any John I know so I’ll assume you’re not for now. It seems to me it is the private sector that hijacks education, the military & health care. They do so by feeding at the trough of govt. contracts awarded to the lowest bidders. For starters In schools we have companies that get rich providing inferior food to school lunch programs. Think of about any consumable in schools including textbooks & we find a private company overcharging taxpayers for their products. The military awards defense contracts to private companies who make a killing with cost over runs on just about every consumable our military men & women use & then we have little to take care of them when they get home. Our health care system is ripped off continually by private companies preying on the needs of public hospitals & the private for profit hospitals have perfected their own looting of health care consumers. We basically have socialism for the rich in this country & those private economic forces either feel guilty that they have such economic advantage or they doth protest too loudly as they laugh all the way to the bank at the expense of the average American that pays through the nose to enrich the 5% that own the country & spend their downtime trying to subvert the public’s faith in their government.


  3. Exactly Gordon, the only way the ACA works is to get all the young uninsured to join to pay high premiums to subsidize the poor & other uninsured. That would bring as many as 24 million new people into the pool for private insurance firms to exploit. It’s interesting that pooling of premiums has always been a kind of socialization of healthcare costs while it provides incomes for the employees of the insurance companies. That’s the only way to do it until you create a layer of highly paid executives when it then becomes “socialism for the rich”.


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