Tuesday, February 05, 2008

The "Uninsured"

Captain, we have a problem. Health costs are on the rise and increasing numbers of people are finding themselves priced out of the health insurance market. This is an especially daunting and fearful reality for families with children.

If I had to choose between Hillary's approach and Barack's approach I would choose Barack's. Why? Obama recognizes rightly that the problem is NOT the uninsured. The problem is those who want insurance but who cannot afford it. He advocates universal access not universal coverage. This is both a proper and acheievable goal.

Hillary advocates universal coverage through mandates. At the end of the day this will criminalize folks who do not want insurance. So, should Bill Gates be criminalized for not buying insurance? Um, well, no. Ahem.

The Republican proposals are on track in many ways. In fact, I think that their fundamental insight that costs are the issue and that more government involvement will drive prices up is correct. However, I think they make both a real policy and political error in not offering a mechanism that guarantees universal access.

Most Americans want their own insurance. They simply want to know that if things go bad they will not left destitute and uncared for. This goal, it seems to me is achievable and fits the American temperament.

BTW -- I am not actually advocating Obama's plan. My point is only that if the choice is Hillary or Obama, give me Obama.

1 comment:

Alice C. Linsley said...

I have no medical insurance and I can't afford it. I'm 58 so it would be wise for me to have it. You point to one of the reasons I will not vote for HC, the liberal socialist who would impose another expense on me. I'm libertarian enough to refuse to pay for medical insurance under such mandates and would probably end up paying fines or going to jail. Obama has the better approach. The question is how to implement it.