Sunday, December 13, 2009

It Can't Be Said Better - XXII

Jacob Hacker, godfather of the public option:
The public plan has been at the core of the health debate for a number of reasons: (1) it will significantly reduce costs; (2) it will provide broad, transparent coverage at an affordable price, setting a benchmark private insurers will be pressed to follow; (3) it won’t be in the business of denying or delaying needed care to people with costly conditions or shifting excessive costs onto them; and (4) it’s a vehicle for driving delivery and payment system reforms that private plans have proven unable and/or unwilling to do. Since we live in a democracy, it also seems relevant that (5) the public plan has been consistently popular with Americans (and doctors, according to a recent survey in the New England Journal of Medicine), despite the unrelenting false attacks on it.


Anonymous said...

None are so blind... Starting just with your first point. Can you name a single government program that has reduced the cost of anything?? You reduce costs by increasing production. The Government Produces Nothing, zero, nada, zilch. (Try it: name one thing that the government, fed/state/ actually PRODUCES!) When you add nothing to the total, and then divide by all the new players, the value goes down and the cost goes up. What ever happened to simple math... oh that's right, the Federal Government stepped in a few years back and began 'improving' the schools.

kimalanus said...

As you say, none so blind.

Read the damn CBO report. Yours is an entirely blind view of capitalism that notes only its virtues and denies all its faults which are blatantly exposed in the health insurance industry.

One thing that government produces: Roads. That your precious businesses that actually do produce products use to move goods to market.

A product whose cost has been reduced by government? Electricity. Read up on the Tennesee Valley Authority.

Name the PRODUCT that health insurance produces.

kimalanus said...

To continue in the absence of response from anonymous, the PRODUCT that health insurance produces is healthy people. However, measuring the results, the United States spends twice the average per capita expenditure of an industrialized nation on health care, but ranks dead last in the observable measures of health outcomes. Every other industrialized nation has some form of government intervention in the health field, ranging from tightly controlled (and I do mean TIGHT) insurance markets (Switzerland) to full on government provided health care (France). We spend 20 percent more on our relatively unregulated insurance market than Switzerland in comparison to an outcome ranking of 3rd for Switzerland and 39th for the US. Clearly, regulation improves the outcomes. France ranks 1st in outcomes and somewhere below Switzerland (2nd highest costs) in expense. Clearly, government is better at providing health care than our free market.

Our policy makers cannot be oblivious to these simple statistics. Something else is driving their opposition to improvement.

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