Monday, September 04, 2006

Letter: September 3, 2006

Yeah, yeah, I know it's the fourth. But I sent the e-mail below to The Des Moines Register in response to their editorial " Health-care cost spiral: Time for change." Being that The Register doesn't staff the newsroom on Sunday, there's nothing to link to for reference in case you didn't read the editorial.
I was surprised, reading the editorial “Health-care cost spiral: Time of change, September 3, 2006, that The Register advocates expanding Medicare to more Americans, not just the elderly.

This is the same solution to the country’s health-care woes that macroeconomist, and Co-Director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, Dean Baker proposes in “The Conservative Nanny State”, downloadable free at

Medicare enrolment should be open to all adult working individuals and families whose income level falls above the poverty limit but below $300,000 per year. And administrative costs being a fraction of privately owned health-care plans, the accrued savings could be passed along to businesses and their employees alike. In addition Medicare’s size gives it enormous bargaining power to both hold down the cost of health-care providers and medications while lending an element of certainty for employers and employees, as premiums could never capriciously be raised or revoked or benefits denied.

Yet neither the Republican Party, with scary-stories of a “big government bureaucracy,” nor the Democratic Leadership Council, whose health-care reform plans look like a “crazy” quilt, want their health-care industry bankrollers to compete in a market economy where they might fail.
I'll know if they're going to publish it if they call.

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