A member of my family has one of those pre-existing conditions that makes it very important that we have health care insurance. We simply cannot afford to be without insurance coverage. So, I am terribly interested in discussions about health care.
On the face of it, universal health care sounds pretty good. I’d like to not have to worry about how to pay for the health problems that inevitably come with age. However, I am not at all convinced that it would be as wonderful as it seems once implemented. I can foresee a myriad of problems that might arise when the government controls or at least influences that health care we have access to. There is, however, one eventuality that no one wants to mention.
Once implemented, the government will eventually tire of funding it. Military reservists and retirees are already experiencing this with Tricare (read the story).
This New York Times article says that both Clinton and Obama argee that universal health care will require at least $110 billion to start. There’s no indication of what they think the ongoing costs might be. I think it unlikely that we have any real understanding of how much universal health care will cost over the long term. If it goes like most things we will be surprised by the largeness of the number once we know it. As the cost of universal health care grows, as it surely will given America’s aging society, Congress will be faced with the task of figuring out how to fund the increases.
Interesting to me is the fact that no one mentions the fact that universal health care usurps the individual of choice. Mr. Obama tells us that he won’t force anyone to take health care because everyone will be persuaded by the low price. Mrs. Clinton is, in my opinion, a bit more honest. She realizes that universal health care will only work if everyone participates. Mrs. Clinton is straight up about requiring everyone to join. Thereby depriving the example in the article, Brandy Coons, from being able to choose how she wants to spend her money.
I am not really very happy about the current health care system. I’d like to see a better system. However, I am not at all convinced that Federally fund health care has any hope at all of being that better system.