I could go on forever...so much information to consider and opine upon. Who says the system is broken? The US has the quality AND level of care that nearly everyone in the world looks to with envy.
The problem is not CARE ... it is COST. So why is the proposed "solution" labeled Health CARE Reform.
Because it is care that will be affected ... not cost. Unless you consider higher costs as the outcome of the "reform" you were looking for.
HALF the reason our costs are so high is because of the quality AND level of care that (nearly) everyone gets. No other country pays for such aggressive cancer-fighting treatments, heart transplants, quadruple-bypass etc in the "average Joe" -- even if you're 80 years old or 100 pounds over-weight. In the US, it's joint-replacement surgury for everyone!
The other HALF of the reason our costs are so high is because someone will pay the price. The health companies would not charge such high rates if someone would not pay them (with government collected taxes, or by forcing businesses to pay). The critics say that already no one can afford health care. Well that is not true or the companies providing the services would not provide them, or they will lower their costs.
Is it just me, or is the plan to have the government throw more money at the problem the wrong way to go? Stop subsidizing health care with so much tax money and prices will come down. Stop increasing the burden on businesses and the prices will come down. Stop encouraging everyone to have an MRI every time they have a headache and the prices will come down.
Only problem: Perhaps the health-care industry will not be able to employ 11% of the entire work-force. But then, is it really necessary for one in every fifteen people (6.8% of the total US population) to be working full time to care for the rest of us? Then again...maybe we wouldn't need 10% of the entire population (15% of the work-force) employed in government either. That's right! Fully 25% of everyone working in the US is employed in either health care or government. What are the chances of "right-sizing" that mess without a full-blown default?
there are many people (perhaps a majority?) that feel entitled to get more of a share of the national wealth than the fair market value of the work they do, or capital they can invest, in return. They feel that the well off should be obligated to pay for the not-so well off. Government as "Robin Hood" -- take from the rich and give to the poor. Whether it's health care, unemployment insurance, social security, or food stamps -- the majority want more than they can afford. It amounts to welfare. And most have no concept of what it takes to pay for it, or the social costs.
Of course Dear Leader (sic Obama) and his cronies will push forward an agenda that will give some people subsidized health insurance with what appears to be lower premiums .... as a big portion of the premiums are paid not by the policy holders themselves, but by the rest of us. Private health care does not have that option of taxpayer subsidized premiums, so of course the playing field is not level. In doing this, more people will be lured to government programs and when private insurance cannot stay in business any longer ..... we will all either have no insurance or government insurance with few actual benefits, not because medical care isn't covered in theory, but because there is no incentive anymore to provide quality health care since doctors and nurses will become government employees.
Here a few simple solutions I think should be part of any reform plan .....
First, shut off access to taxpayer subsidized health care to illegal aliens.
Second, limit the payout on malpractice lawsuits.
Third, everyone has only a major medical policy, meaning everyone pays out of pocket all basic doctors and prescription costs, causing a market shift in doctor visit prices and cost of prescription drugs based on what the market will bear.
Fourth, elect small government members of congress in 2010 and elect a President in 2012 who believes in capitalism.
We just can't fiscally sustain this huge ramp-up in government programs and expanded control from the Democrats; it'll bring the country to where we are now in the state of CA, on the brink of financial ruin. And once these Federal programs are passed, they never go away. They only grow and inefficiently spend more & more money as time goes on as Congress approves additional programs requiring higher taxes.
This administration is not about fixing the economy; it's about expanding government control of our everyday lives and raising taxes to redistribute to the general populace to increase dependency on the gov't. They know how to grow the economy, and they're intent on doing just the opposite.
I agree that something needs to be done to fix healthcare (err costs) .... and I'm hopeful that 2010 will be an election year when it becomes clearly understood that the kind of change we've gotten in Washington D.C. ..... is not the change that we wanted.