Sunday, November 10, 2013


During the hullabaloo about efforts to kill"ObamaCare," the website glitches, the costs of health insurance, the loss of some health insurance policies, it seems that there is a complete whiff on the part of most of the media- with a few notable exceptions- when it comes to perception of the problem. The problem isn't that ObamaCare is a socialist trainwreck which is government tyranny at its worst- that accusation is the exact opposite of the framework of the program, which as President Obama pointed out in the 2012 presidential campaign, was Massachusetts' Romney Care taken nationally. Without question it is private enterprise funded by government subsidies, and rational thinkers tear their hair out when they are confronted with the abundant ignorance of mainstream media talking heads who parrot the Tea Party line without ever challenging the basic assumptions of "fact."

ObamaCare does not take a single private entity and "socialize" it- there was no creation of a national health service which took over the employment of physicians and made all private for profit hospitals into public hospitals operated by and funded by governmental entities.

Which begs the question: if we do have a public, social, program, funded solely by the government with no private participation, and if it works, and if there are no glitches in signing people up for it, and if it is more than 50 years old and no sane Republican would dream of trying to dismantle it or privatize it (notice the modifier "sane" before the word Republican), then why don't we just trash the whole Rube Goldberg Obamacare machine with all of its unnecessary moving parts, and instead let more people into the one program that actually works? Of course, that would be Medicare- not Medicaid, which depends on State participation.

We need to scrap Obamacare- or, in the present climate, put the Republicans on the spot and get them to vote to repeal the mandate portion of the law, and replace the mandate with a public option to allow any person to opt into Medicare, charging a very low introductory amount, and slowly phasing Medicare into a means tested program for those not yet enrolled (to avoid a backlash from seniors already on the program). For those crying out against government tyranny- give them exactly what they are asking for: a program that is not mandatory (nobody is compelled to sign up for Medicare) but is so low cost that private insurers will have to compete or go out of business. That sounds like a win win- one win for the policy aspect of insuring more people at lower costs, and one win for the politics of taking the wind out of the Tea Party's windbags.