Have you heard Sen. Chuck Grassley of the Senate Finance Committee or House Minority Leader John A. Boehner tell you that Medicare is wrong and should be dismantled? No, you haven't. You know why? Two reasons:
1) It works. That's right, you don't see the streets filled with dying old people so you? No, because a public option for health insurance exists out there that provides for their care.
2) Old people are a growing segment of our population and they have nothing better to do than to watch Matlock reruns and vote. So no one who wants to get re-elected is going to tell you that Medicare is wrong.
To add insult to injury, the opponents to health care are telling everyone that if we pass reform, it will result in managed care where someone besides your doctor and you decide what kind of care you get and what doctors you can see. Actually, that's exactly what we have now.
In 1998, 73 percent of people were covered by conventional insurance where you could see any doctor and the two of you decided on your care and, except for the co-pay, the insurance company paid the bill. Now, as of 2008, only 2 percent of people have that kind of insurance. Now we are all in HMO's or Preferred Provider networks where the insurance company is deciding who you can and can't see.
To make it worse, these same insurance companies that take our money employ tens of thousands of people whose job it is to figure out how not to pay your full benefit. That is how they make a profit, by charging a premium price to cover marketing and other administrative costs while working as hard as possible not to pay the full amount.
If that doesn't convince you that they are hypocrites, then let's take a quick look at the cornerstone of our laws and government, the Constitution of the United States.
The preamble reads:
We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.What could be more basic to "promoting the general welfare" than making sure all of us have access to quality health care?
Frankly, I would much prefer my health care be provided by an institution devoted to that ideal than by one committed to profits and stockholders.
Don't Want a Public Plan? Well, What Do You Think of Medicare?