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Single payer vs Public option

This is all you need. Shove this in anyone’s face who starts saying, “But, but, but . . . the guvvamint!” From a comment by Mikirivi [1] on Krugman’s blog, a graphic prepared by Dr. Klein for the Arizona League of Women Voters:
Click on image for full size
side by side comparison of the two options [2]

The one solitary “disadvantage” that I can see in the Single Payer column is that the insurance industry would need restructuring. I seem to remember reading somewhere that that’s over two million workers. So it’s nontrivial. But as I remember reading in the same place, most of the skills in the insurance industry are various office skills and are eminently transferable to other fields. (We could even, like, you know, help people make the switch.)

So we could have a system that costs half as much and insures everyone [3] (“Single Payer and beyond” section in the link), or a variant on the baroque BS we have now. The choice is obvious. Baroque BS, of course.

The whole thing is eerily reminiscent of the electric car vs GM debacle. On the one hand everyone wins and GM has to be restructured, whereas on the other hand everyone loses and GM . . . .

health insurance, single payer

5 Comments (Open | Close)

5 Comments To "Single payer vs Public option"

#1 Comment By teqjack On 19 Jun, 2009 @ 11:20

OK, the current system has multiple roblems – and ridiculous costs. On my last in-hospital stay, they wanted to keep me in for four days so they could administer some shots: I left after one night, pointing out that my mother was a practical nurse, two sisters were nurses, one niece was a nurse, another sister owned a nursing home with several nurses on staff, and I was quite capable of giving myself the shots (abdominal muscle, not needing to hit a vein) even without such support. Why should I pay circa $950/day to be bored out of my mind for service I could get for $80/day at a motel?

OTOH I do not like either of the proposed systems, certainly mot as much as the present one. And when I see “Private Delivery” as the heading of the chart I immediately see egregious slanting. Medicare and Medicaid (and various more “local” State systems) are supposed to work this way, in that medical personnel/facilities are not formally part of the government[s]. But much like non-government plans they must follow rules from these fund-providers, but government is far slower (often by decades) to update the rules – and even slower to update compensation when costs change.

Mind you, I am covered by Medicare and Medicaid myself, and at under $18k/annum income am grateful for it. But when I look at the plans and administration thereof in other countries I fear more government intervention.

#2 Comment By quixote On 19 Jun, 2009 @ 12:42

Given the current behavior of the government that will be doing the intervening, I’d have to say I agree with you.

The [4] I’ve heard is nothing but a government-sponsored way to hand over even more money to insurance companies.

#3 Comment By TrueFan1947 On 12 Aug, 2009 @ 15:26

The most glaring misrepresentation touted in the entire discourse regarding single-payer vs public option healthcare is the fear mongering against “Big Government”. Here’s the rub: Corporate entities LOVE big government as long as the public’s money finds its way into corporate coffers. On the other hand, when the public’s taxes are used for the good of the general public, THEN we hear corporate entities and their minions screaming about the evils of big government. What is the military/industrial/legislative/lobbyist complex but a HUGE vacuum cleaner that funnels public money into the hands of corporations? How’s THAT for big government? BIG enough for you?

The single payer solution is anathema to “private insurance companies” because their parasitic function in the healthcare equation would be eliminated!Taves would actually FUND public healthcare for ALL citizens. Imagine THAT! How terrible!

#4 Comment By TrueFan1947 On 12 Aug, 2009 @ 15:29

Public taxes funding public healthcare is NOT going to enrich insurance companies. Oh, the EVIL of such a scenario!

#5 Comment By quixote On 12 Aug, 2009 @ 16:20

Truefan1947- ain’t that the truth.

By the way, I just got the memo that we need to call it Medicare for All. It’s a good idea. The level of delusion in the US of A has reached psychotic proportions, and it’s important not to trigger hallucinations. People know how Medicare works, and it’s not too scary. You go to the doctor. Your bills get paid.

And the thing that is so absolutely screamingly ga-ga to me is that we could provide health CARE (not just insurance) to EVERYONE at HALF the cost. I’m not surprised the insurance industry is going bonkers about that, since the savings come out of their hide, but what is up with the loonies shrieking for a bad deal? o_O