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Good Points, Paul

September 8th, 2009

Paul Cox has a very good, easy-to-read post on the Public Option and why it’s a great idea.

The Public Option:

  • saves money by not advertising like private insurers do;
  • saves money by not having as high administrative costs as private insurers do;
  • saves money by not taking profits like private insurers do;
  • passes these savings directly on to you, the consumer;
  • and finally, the obvious: it’s an option, you can ignore it if you like.

And this is really what shows up the non-thinkers who oppose socialized medicine: they recoil from such plans solely because of fears that are not only false but are laughably so, fears of socialized medicine leading to a socialist government (which is kind of like fearing that community centers will lead to communism) and because they have this deluded idea pounded into their heads by the right wing that the government screws up everything it touches. Because Social Security, Medicare, the Interstate Highway System, the Space Program, and all those other government programs were such huge failures. The major failures in government come primarily when the right-wingers get their hands on an organization, pilfer its resources, riddle it with corruption, and appoint agency leaders who are proactively opposed to the agencies’ principles.

What amazes me is that all of these people who oppose the Public Option seem so afraid that a dollar will be added to their taxes that they’re willing to shell out five dollars to private industry instead. By eliminating the Public Option, they are essentially saying that they want to pay for advertising for insurers, they would rather pay extra for less-efficient private administrative costs, that they think it’s somehow cheaper for them to add large sums of money to their premiums that will pay for nothing except profits to shareholders or bonuses to executives.

The best thing about the Public Option–one of the main ideas behind it–is that it stands to slash health care costs so much that private insurers will be forced to streamline their administrative systems to become more efficient, cut their profit margins to reasonable levels, and fight to find ways to save money for their customers. How evil!

And then there’s the “fear” that the Public Option will be so cheap that private insurers won’t be able to compete, and they’ll fail. Then all we’ll have left is that evil Public Option!

One can only hope.

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