Monday, February 25, 2008

McCain's Healthcare Problem

Michael Reynolds nails John McCain to the wall on the issue where he’s most vulnerable: healthcare. My number one reservation about McCain has been his less-than-comprehensive healthcare proposal. It’s not even really a proposal, it’s some superficial adjustments and free market bromides.

You don’t have to be a policy expert to know our healthcare system is ineffectual. Despite our world-class technology and highly-skilled physicians, far too many Americans have trouble obtaining basic care. We have a high cost, high quality, low access system. This is not only creating undo hardships for many citizens but is weighing down our global competitiveness by creating an immobile and risk-adverse workforce at just the time job fluidity and entrepreneurism is most needed.

We’re long past the point where tweaks might work – heck, incessant regulatory tweaks are one of the reasons we’re in this mess. We need big ideas now. Unfortunately, John McCain doesn’t seem to have them.

I’m not specifically arguing for Barack Obama’s or Hillary Clinton’s approaches. I think both focus too much on creating new layers of bureaucracy and not enough on removing the unnecessary bureaucratic obstacles already in place. However, at least the Democrats recognize the existence of a problem as well as the American people’s desire for a solution. McCain is apparently content suggesting the same “the system ain’t really that bad” proposals advanced by Republicans and others who just haven’t been paying attention.

By no means does McCain’s lack of a comprehensive healthcare plan disqualify him from serious consideration (to be fair, it’s just February and this wasn’t an issue important to winning his primary). But I’ll be listening to him. Just as I hope the eventual Democratic nominee develops a more rational Iraq plan during the general election I hope McCain develops a more workable healthcare plan. His failure to do so may not cost him my vote but it could very well cost him the election.

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1 Comments:

Blogger Constructive Feedback said...

[quote]You don’t have to be a policy expert to know our healthcare system is ineffectual.[/quote]

Aren't you confusing two distinct issues?

1) The health care quality level as a factor of one's insurance coverage.

You can't call the system "ineffectual" because people's differing incomes/ insurance coverage any more than you can call a dealership that has two people looking to purchase a standing in their showroom with one having the resources to purchase the top end car while the other WANTS the top end car yet only has the money for the entry level vehicle.

2) The current policies regarding how the government steps in to assist individuals who don't have coverage / don't have enough coverage?

[quote] Despite our world-class technology and highly-skilled physicians, far too many Americans have trouble obtaining basic care.[/quote]

You nailed in the "we want the best...for less" concept. The question is will the GOVERNMENT who is the intermediary with a blank check willing to tell people NO?

Now keep in mind that people like John Conyers says "every man will be equal in my health care system regardless of if he has $1 in his pocket or $1 million". I maintain that this is at the foundation an example of the loss of economic democracy.

When an American who has the MONEY to do with as he pleases otherwise is restricted from purchasing health care services as they choose then something if fundamentally wrong with this system.

5:05 PM  

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