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Government Run Healthcare: Discussion with a Liberal

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posted on Mar, 23 2010 @ 07:52 PM
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I had a long talk with a mainstream liberal friend of mine about the new healthcare law. His views are honest and sincere and I think worth examining because they probably reflect the views that many of our politicians have. Here were his points:

He thinks the current system is broken because healthcare costs are way too high and there are too many Americans who have no coverage, including illegals. This drives up the cost of healthcare for everyone else because those without coverage go to the ER to get treated or they just don't get any medical care.

He likens healthcare to education. He believes that there are some things that are not suited to be run in the private sector, healthcare being one.

He concludes that this new law is a step to a single payor system (the government) which should control and administer all aspects of healthcare including drugs and medicine because the private sector has shown that it cannot do the job.

Now here is the interesting part. He doesn't think that the government will do a great job running healthcare, he just thinks it will be better and more fair than the private sector.

His conclusion: healthcare should not be, and cannot be, a for-profit venture. Therefore, the government needs to run it because profit is not a proper consideration when treating people's medical needs.

He sees the current bill producing something like public education or the delivery of mail is currently: a blend of private and government run facilities. He thinks the intended and natural progression is to have an all government run healthcare system from top to bottom more like the military. His reasoning is that the for-profit ventures can never cover everyone at a reasonable price. In other words, capitalism and healthcare do not mix.

I don't agree with his reasoning and think it is wrong. But, I found it fascinating because his beliefs are honest and he delivered them to me without all the bluster and rhetoric that our politicians give us. In fact, I think he has articulated what Obama/Pelosi and the others who voted for the bill probably actually believe.

I invite your comments on his thoughts.




posted on Mar, 23 2010 @ 08:02 PM
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Originally posted by Sibilance

Now here is the interesting part. He doesn't think that the government will do a great job running healthcare, he just thinks it will be better and more fair than the private sector.





I think this is the view most 'liberals' (including myself) have.

Also, it would seem to be the most prevalent opinion amongst individuals living in countries that have established single-payer systems.

Yes, having the government run healthcare is not a perfect solution, but it's a better solution than having the industry be privatized.

In my personal opinion, the biggest problem with private insurance is incentive to profit. There should be absolutely no incentive to profit when somebody's life, health, and well-being are on the line. We live in a Capitalist society, and as such we know all too well that when money is involved, companies are not looking out for the well-being of the consumer, but are instead looking out for the well-being of the shareholder and the bottom-line.

Remove the incentive for profit (as in a single payer system) and you solve most of the problems plaguing the current health care system in the US.


Of course, as a liberal, I have to say that the current bill is a complete waste of time, as it does very little to address this key issue.





EDIT to add: Kudos for bringing this up in an atmosphere of rational and intelligent discussion, as opposed to the numerous, mindless "omg health care America is dead!" and "the world economy is going to collapse because we have health care now!" threads. We need more venues of intellectual thought on ATS, and I'm glad to see someone contributing to that.

There has been so much partisan garbage over this stupid health care bill, I was tempted to delete my account today. Your post changed my mind.. temporarily.

[edit on 23-3-2010 by drwizardphd]



posted on Mar, 23 2010 @ 08:06 PM
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First of all, virtually no one is talking about government run health care and to state it as such is a big misunderstanding. The issues being discussed today and included in the recent bill are more along the lines of government regulated and subsidized health insurance industry, not health care or health care delivery per se. Big difference. Kudos to you for at least listening to other views and considering their merits.



posted on Mar, 23 2010 @ 08:49 PM
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Despite appearances, I can be rather rational and civil when I care to be.

The problem as I see it, is that this law, as it stands, has no provision or even directionality to become a gateway for a UHC system. That would be a task for a future Congress and President to create.

One of the biggest things that got stuck in my craw was the deliberate misinformation. I listened to Obama's speech today at the signing, mainly to see if he would sign it, but the part where he said he was signing it for Natoma Canfield.
source


I’m signing it for Natoma Canfield. Natoma had to give up her health coverage after her rates were jacked up by more than 40 percent. She was terrified that an illness would mean she’d lose the house that her parents built, so she gave up her insurance. Now she’s lying in a hospital bed, as we speak, faced with just such an illness, praying that she can somehow afford to get well without insurance. Natoma’s family is here today because Natoma can’t be. And her sister Connie is here. Connie, stand up


That woman will still have to wait for four years for her eligibility. Because the part about excluding pre-existing conditions in adults doesn't start until 2014. As will others that are in the same boat.

The law still excludes same-sex partners, even in states where gay marriage is legal, from the same benefits and advantages that traditional couple have. With Obama's push to end "Don't Ask. Don't Tell" would not there have been something to address this issue.

I don't like how some funding relies on future Congresses to determine. There is no way to be sure that a future Congress will address those issues. Look at Social Security, my letters differ from my father's (19 years age difference) in that mine include a paragraph about don't count on this to be here when you retire in my yearly benefit estimate statement.

But what does upset me the most, was the processed used. I would have supported a true and honest UHC system if Congress would have used the Amendment process to institute the clear and defined power to do so. With a UHC, Medicare and Medicaid would have been eliminated with no threats of jailing nor fining the People into submission and compliance.

Like most people, threatening to punch me in the face for my own good, does not endear me to your cause. This, I feel, was no different.



posted on Mar, 23 2010 @ 09:07 PM
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post removed because the user has no concept of manners

Click here for more information.



posted on Mar, 23 2010 @ 09:19 PM
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Originally posted by joey_hv
reply to post by Sibilance
 
snip




Why?

For being a rational, intelligent human being who is willing to express his point of view to a friend who has different political leanings?

It's nice to see the partisan blinders back on in full swing. Here I was hoping this thread wouldn't degrade into the senseless back and forth ATS seems to be famous for lately.

Stay classy, ATS.

[edit on 23-3-2010 by elevatedone]



posted on Mar, 23 2010 @ 09:30 PM
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this is a very dangerous way of thinking..



Your friend in not very experienced.

I am going to try to break this down without the "OH HELL THE SKY IS FALLING ONE LINER!!"

Yet just to give you an idea here.

say your self employed or work as a temp or are sub contracted.

You make 2 grand a month just saying.

mortgage is say 900 and its escrowed so it includes all the bs along with it.
so leaves you with 1100 bucs, for food, gas (hopefully gas prices dont go up again) water, credit cards, house maintenence, cable or satelite or whatever, daycare or whatever car insurence, oh car payments and manditory healthcare..

these liberals are smoking weed....



not to mention Not one independant voted for this bill nor republican..
Not one.

We let one political party decide what is best for the millions of Americans?
A fine example of how a super majority of one political party and a president in the same party can make a terrible mess.

clerk.house.gov...

I think its time to get rid of Party ties in Washington. This party'd system seems to be getting abused.



posted on Mar, 23 2010 @ 09:37 PM
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reply to post by drwizardphd
 



Well I am going to marry my chicken and build a bunker out in Carlsbad



OP - at the core of it is the idea of what "should" be profitable, at least in my opinion.

Peoples basic physical health should not be in the realm of profitable, investor driven
business.

It was grandfathered as the current notion, cost and importance is a fairly new idea historically. We accepted it as a legitimate business, meanwhile costs have inflated 100+% in ten years and is now costing US a fifth of our financial resources yearly.
The genius in the whole thing is we are not all burdened with this cost all at once or
EVERYONE would be ready for reform (beyond tort and the likes).

The best part of this whole thing is that it instills a new message to America - which is
Healthcare is not a Porsche, or a Cheeseburger or a pair of Frey boots... At best this will help nurture a new paradigm where there is some credence given to the humanity of
mankind.

Many of the specific details I could do without - but I do enjoy the sputum that was flung at the objectivist "man is a product POV", that I do enjoy...



posted on Mar, 25 2010 @ 05:28 PM
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Thanks for those who replied. I am one of the odd ducks who found the healthcare vote and debate to be very healthy for our country. People started actually reading the constitution, looking at how bills become laws, thinking about what their elected representatives actually do, and most importantly, began to think about the proper role and scope of our federal government.

I wish this would have been a more vigorous conversation because I think it goes to the essence of what we want our government to do and be, or in my case not do or be.


I have added some of you as respected foes. Even though I disagree with the conclusions, I crave the honest, straight-forward dialogue and thoughts. They are so hard to come by in almost any other format.



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