Start from scratch on UHC

Cancel everything.

Wipe the slate clean.

No deal.

Start over.

Americans want to reform their health care system. How about we trash every single change that has been proposed, and start over? Maybe we’ll decide to adopt some of the same ideas anyway…

To start, bring back those starched white unform and white stockings.

You’re thinking a step or two beyond ‘heath care’.

It won’t help. Its not the program itself, or any of the variations. The insurance money cannot, existentially cannot, let any such thing happen. Period. One crack in the wall, and its all over. Any program, however watered down, however dicked around with, is going to help some people. Who will be grateful. Who’s friends and families will be grateful. To the Democrats.

Any advance, however slight, is just that much worse for a party on the ropes. No matter what it takes, if they have to daub themselves with shit and set their hair on fire, they’ll do it.

The Obama people made a big mistake, they figured to present this as a reasonable and sensible piece of legislation, that could be openly and fairly argued. They didn’t figure on hand to hand combat. For the Dems, the stakes are pretty high, for the opposition, its life or death.

Let’s see.
My family is thousands of dollars in debt because of my Beloved’s medical condition, she lost her job and insurance, neither one of us can get different insurance because of preexisting conditions, and we’re probably going to lose our house.
Yup. Another 30 or 40 years of stalling is just what we need.

This is not a feasible option for the US. It’s rather like saying, hey, traffic in LA is a nightmare - let’s start over and have a European-style metropolitan public transport system. You see, for every decade or century that the “non-European” model consolidates its hold while others build up and invest in their “European” model, it makes it ever more expensive for the former to switch to the latter. Providing LA with a London Underground would not be comparable in expense to building a new London Underground in the desert and basing a new city around it.

Having said that, the US seriously needs to reconsider how it can spend so much of its taxes on healthcare and still not achieve anything like universal care. I simply don’t understand how US conservatives can say that European countries have more “socialist” systems when they actually spend **less public money per capita** than the US.

(Those statistics are from the year 2000, but I’m sure it’s still the case that the US healthcare system is still amongst the top 3 most “socialist” in the world based on public money per capita.)
Czarcasm, you have my deepest sympathy, friend. Insufferable European pomposity it may be, but I have never understood how it is that the richest country in the world allows so many of its citizens to lead Third World lives in regards to the consequences of ill health.

The problem is that the way to get to universal coverage without spiralling costs is to make the vast majority of people pay for health insurance or for health care. In Canada and in Western Europe this is accomplished in one of two ways:

  1. Taxes on the **first **X percent of you income that goes strictly to providing health care or health insurance for everyone.

  2. An individual mandate for “consumers” with a take all comers requirement for insurers. Only the poorest have their premiums subsidized.

Now the vast majority have a stake in keeping costs down. So when it comes to making hard choices about how much to pay doctors, other healthcare providers, pharmaceutical companies and medical device makers, there is a lot of pressure to keep costs down.

Neither of these is politically possible in the US. To get the plan passed you have to promise that the vast majority will not have to pay more, and that the system will be financed on the backs of a minority (the “rich” by some definition). Then of course the population is going to vote itself more and more benefits without worrying about the costs.

Witness the popularity of raising the cap on Social Security wages. Social Security was never supposed to be widely redistributive, but when things go against you actuarially (too many retirees per worker) we want to soak the rich.

If you go the individual mandate route, you will need to put in subsidies for most of the population to get their support. Virtually everyone who gets employer coverage will want the subsidy, and will want it paid by a surtax or super-tax on the wealthy. Pretty soon only a tiny minority will care about the premium, but everyone will want the premium to pay for more and more care.

The only way we’ll get UHC is if we say to what were the Confederate States “You know, you were right; please secede. And take Alaska with you”.

I trust this includes all private insurance policies?

A very tempting offer - but a good portion of the fly-over region my want to come along as well.

Whoa! Is that where a ‘put the brakes on everything’ philosophy leads?

Of course. Private insurance is “something”, and so is included under the umbrella of “everything” that you’re putting brakes on.

If you don’t include the private policies in your “start from scratch” idea, then effectively you’re saying that the only way to deal with proposed changes is to reject them them all immediately, so they have to be re-proposed and then re-rejected indefinitely, and just keep everything exactly like it is forever.

In America we are religious. We believe in the trilogy. God the dollar, God the cent, god the credit card almighty. If some company is getting rich, it is good.

I’m not sure starting from scratch (in this discussion topic) can ever be all that productive - because really early on in the process, you have to ask “OK, what do we want it to do?” - and suddenly, all over again, here are the options of:
treating people according to their chosen level of cover
treating people according to their need, regardless of their ability to pay.

Starting from scratch in this debate doesn’t achieve much because this debate hasn’t ever really progressed very far anyway.

gonzomax, that’s a shockingly cynical statement. And one that I wholeheartedly agree with. It does make me sad for my country.

I seriously think we should.

Stalling? Am I correct in implying that you are hoping the government will soon help people in situations like yours?

I’m just tired of this fake “Golly-I really, really sympathize with your situation, but you wouldn’t want to have us rush in without discussing it first, would you?” stalling tactic.

Would you care for a donut hole while you wait? :wink:

Sheesh. I guess the idea in the op isn’t very good then.

So if we’re going to get UHC, our best bet is at least some variant of the current proposal.

Googly-moogly, that was quick :eek: