Catching up on the health-care issue


A couple of my friends were whining on Facebook about the prospects for a government health-care proposal:

...a government health care plan would be nice, but [I've] been to the DMV too many times to think it would be good.
don't you think the gov't has its tentacles in enough crap? gov't run healthcare doesn't work! Look at Canada
Public health. From the same people who brought you public transport, public toilets and public housing.

And I figured: these guys are talking about the issue as if people were still proposing British-style nationalized health care here. This is so out of date; this is so beside the point that they're not even talking about what is likely to come out of Congress.

So I wrote back: Come on, guys, smarten up.

What we have in Massachusetts is likely to be the model: health care institutions remain in the private sector (they're heavily regulated already).

Also, health insurance remains in the private sector; individuals are required to buy it; and low-income people get a subsidized plan.

This is about the best approach that is politically possible, given the public demand for universal coverage, and we can thank Romney for it. Even the Heritage Foundation contributed ideas to it. It's market-based. Instead of subsidizing the providers, it subsidizes people. It's not monolithic.

Sure, purist libertarians can get their dudgeon up about the mandatory purchase rule, but basically, Catholic social teaching doesn't give a tinker's curse about the prissiness of secular libertarian ideology when it comes to health care.

The major moral downside is that a state mandate forces all insurance plans to cover unethical anti-life "procedures" such as abortion. And that is very bad.

But adolescent whining about the Post Office and the DMV (which actually is quite good in this state) is useless: that's aimed against monopolistic British-type systems that have no support here. Even the liberals don't believe in them any more.


To pay for the US' healthcare shifts, a major issue is the elimination of the tax deductibility of insurance for employers. That's going to devastate the private market for insurance as it raises its cost by about 30%. This is *not* what MA has and is only one of the ideas in play. Raise the cost on the "private option" enough and people will flock to the "public option" as the only affordable choice and yes, you get back to the DMV and Canada that way, surplus deaths that nobody bothers counting because they're not politically convenient.

My job's on the line on this issue. I pay attention. I suggest you might not be examining the legislation closely enough and allowing hope to triumph over long experience.

>surplus deaths that nobody bothers counting because they're not politically convenient.

they will only be counted when a conservative is in charge, the same as "abortions went up under bush" and all that happened was states that stopped reporting under clinton conviently started reporting again.

The thing that has gotten some of my family members to back away from socialized medicine is when i use the scare tactic of "I really want socialized medicine also, but would you want someone like George Bush in charge of it in the future" they realize that eventually a republican will be back in office and it scares them haha.

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On life and living in communion with the Catholic Church.

Richard Chonak

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This page contains a single entry by Richard Chonak published on May 19, 2009 2:10 PM.

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