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Politics & Power

What's new on The American Borders Forum this week? Preview pane at the bottom of the page.

Who Better To Decide: Government or Business?

Lost in the healthcare debate of 2009 is the question about who will make more reasonable decisions about our healthcare. Currently, if you have health insurance through an insurance company that operates on a “for profit” model you are a line item that is either profitable or not profitable. Your healthcare is broken down into what will make the company’s bottom line the most attractive. Even “not for profit” healthcare providers make coverage decisions based on cost instead of what is right for patients. Since the leaders of these organizations are not elected or hired by the people they serve there is basically nothing we can do about the decisions they make other than to change to another company that more than likely would make the same decisions under the same circumstances. Could the people gain power in the process if the decisions came from Washington?

Medicine for profit inherently makes treating disease more economically sound than curing it. A cure is a one-time thing and leaves the patient able to move on with their life free of further expense. Treatment can last for years and cost millions of dollars so it is very hard on the patient but very good for the bottom line of the healthcare provider. If Washington becomes involved on an active basis, cures become more attractive than treatments. People expect politicians to get results and if they don’t they are not reelected. Cost is best controlled for the people if government takes over healthcare and the focus is placed on cures over treatments. While the healthcare industry would not be able to make as much money from hard working Americans, the people would benefit more from a cure-focused healthcare establishment.

To achieve a cure-focused healthcare industry and lower the cost of medicine we would also need to change the way that medicine is developed and distributed. Currently corporations do the research and hold the patents for drugs. When a breakthrough is made one company benefits and the patient pays through the nose. Under a well developed national plan a national research center would fund research in the nation’s universities aimed at curing disease. When breakthroughs are made the drug companies would all be given the information to manufacture drugs and allowed to compete in an open marketplace for sales of the drugs. Removing the patent process from drug manufacturing would increase competition and as a result drive prices down.

Real healthcare reform would remove profit as a consideration from providing healthcare and focus on preventions and cures for disease. Real reform would include wellness programs to get Americans healthier to begin with. Education on diet and exercise as well as access to healthier foods for low income people would save the people of America far more on healthcare than any choice of healthcare providers could. Blue Cross, Kaiser, Aetna, PacifiCare, etc. all have profit motives in their plans. If you think they don’t, ask the people who have been bankrupted because, despite having insurance before they got sick, they had to spend thousands and even millions of dollars for healthcare that their insurance provider refused to cover for one reason or another found deep in some fine print.

The cries of “no socialized medicine” come from the right all the time but they fail to recognize that the most effective healthcare systems in America are socialized medicine. CHAMPUS (US Military healthcare system) and Medicare are two of the most effective healthcare plans in the world. They are both administered by the federal government and serve hundreds of thousands of people nationwide. The same people decrying “socialized medicine” are demanding that Medicare not be cut. Well folks, Medicare IS socialized medicine and it works rather well. It is not perfect and could use some improvement but it works pretty well. Perhaps a quick fix for healthcare would be to make Medicare available to all Americans with sliding scale premiums based on income level.

In the end it comes down to a simple question. Which option gives more power to the people? Private insurance leaves decisions about healthcare in the hands of people looking at the bottom line who are accountable to nobody but the shareholders. The public option keeps our elected officials on the hook for the quality of care we receive. If medicine performs poorly, we can elect new leaders who will fix it. There are advantages to a public system. If you look logically at the actual issue without listening to the scare tactics on either side two things become clear. One, the current system puts profit ahead of care more often than can ever be acceptable to people of conscience. Two, we already have socialized medicine in America and it has been working well for decades. Instead of voting how the slick ads tell us to, we need to vote with our heads and put our interests ahead of the people who have the millions to put slick ads on the air.

Troy Wilson-Ripsom - Staff Writer | Give your feedback on this article. | Click icon to Digg this article



Get Involved

Do you sit and yell at the TV when politicians come on? Do you shake your head sadly whenever you see a homeless veteran? Is that all you tend to do?

It's time to put up or shut up America. We all love to talk about how we could do things better or how we would do it if we were in charge. Well, it's time to put your money where your mouth is. If you can think of it, you can write it down. If you can write it down, you can type it. If you can type it, you can e-mail it and if you can e-mail it, you can send it here.

We at Reform America are committed to giving voice to anyone who wants to put their ideas out there to make our nation a better place. As the readership grows, we are able to take those views to a wider and wider audience. Grassroots campaigns begin with voices speaking out. You have opinions. Voice them. We aren't about conservative or liberal. We aren't about pro-this or anti-that. We're about Americans and the First Amendment. Reform America is about politics by, for and of the people. You are the people. You only need to speak up. America is listening. Send your article to: stories@reform-america.net



Have You Been Downsized Due to Outsourcing?

For several years now we have listened to some within the business community tell us that America can't compete on a global scale unless they send our jobs overseas where they can be done cheaper. The question becomes, if we don't have good paying jobs here, how can we sustain our own economy? We want to hear from you. Have you lost your job? Have you been forced into a lower wage job due to outsourcing? Has outsourcing been a success for you? Did you end up in a better job?

Tell us your story so we can make sure the politicians see how outsourcing really impacts the workers who are backbone of America. Send your story to stories@reform-america.net





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