Obamacare: Can federal intervention solve a problem caused by federal intervention?

I didn’t expect to find anything to love in an article titled Listen to left to get healthcare right. But I did. Author David Hoppe points out several truefacts.

Our employer-based approach not only excludes or underinsures millions of people, it also puts big and small businesses behind an expanding 8-ball as managers who want to do the right thing are penalized by the ever-increasing cost of premiums. Let’s face it: for years, the healthcare market in this country has utterly failed at correcting itself.

True enough.

Republicans who have been hellbent on stopping Obamacare have nothing to suggest by way of an alternative, perhaps because they have basically killed their own idea.

 Can’t argue there.

The federal government has to intervene, not only to take the side of people who are being trampled by market forces that show no regard for their health and well-being, but in order to keep the larger economy from being sucked dry.

What the what?

Federal intervention caused the employer-based approach to healthcare Hoppe justifiably criticizes. A market hamstrung by tax-code distortions and regulations has a hard time correcting itself. If Federal intervention caused the problem, what kind of Federal intervention does Hoppe think will solve it?

Hoppe  calls for what he calls “Medicare for Everybody.”

“If it’s good enough for people over 65 (and it is, ask any senior, even a Tea Party member), it ought to work for the rest of us.”

Medicare is only able to operate currently because it’s subsidized by the private insurance companies Hoppe wants to edge out of the market. Even with that advantage it’s unsustainable in its current form. Putting the entire nation under Medicare would only hasten its swan dive into insolvency.

This article typifies the left’s “thinking” on health insurance. They recognize the system is messed up. They think up unsustainable ways for the government to “fix” it. They blame Republicans for getting in the way of the fixes. At no time do they address the myriad ways government intervention causes and exacerbates deficiencies in the health insurance market. And at no time do they seriously consider the unintended consequences of further government intervention.

Image by ProgressOhio.

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