Jul
20

Universal coverage is bad – Part Nine, Socialism

The last argument against universal coverage is that it is socialist, and therefore bad.
Whenever critics start throwing labels around, its obvious their position is not based on facts, data, and logic. And/or they are just lazy, as not much is simpler than saying “that’s bad because it is socialist/fascist/communist/libertarian”.
(have you noticed that as we get to the bottom of the list the I-Hate-Universal-Coverage crowd’s arguments get thin to the point of invisibility?)

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Jul
19

Universal coverage is bad – Part Eight

Universal coverage is not needed because its just a replacement for a failed Medicaid/Medicare system that should be covering those folks without employer-based insurance. Once we fix the ‘M’ programs we’ll be fine.
That’s another argument against UC, and the one we’ll tackle today.
(Again, we will narrowly construe this argument; corollaries and complementary/supplemental positions have been addressed in detail previously.)

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Jul
18

Universal coverage is bad – Part Seven

This morning we address the “if they have insurance, they’ll use it, which will drive up costs…and inevitably lead to rationing” reason to not favor universal coverage.
I used to agree with the first part of the statement; the ‘moral hazard’ argument. Now, after reading comments on this blog and others,and doing more research, I don’t agree with it at all.
Rationing” is one of those scare words designed to make people think they’ll die before getting an MRI to diagnose cancer. But first things first.

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Jul
17

Universal coverage is bad – Part Six

Perhaps the most puzzling condemnation of universal coverage is the contention that “A mandate is not necessary as the free market will solve the problem”.
Proponents of the free market argue that the problem is today’s market is not “free”, but rather over-regulated. And once we completely de-regulate the insurance market, the Invisible Hand will produce products and services that will provide coverage for a lot more folks.

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Jul
11

Universal coverage – Part Three

The second in the list of top ten reasons universal coverage is bad is…
People don’t have insurance because they choose to not buy it.
Admittedly there are several closely related arguments, but we’ll stick with the letter of the argument in this post, and address the relations later.
I will stipulate to some people choosing to not buy insurance, with the caveat that ‘some’ is a really small number. In fact, that ‘really small number’ is 2%. Yes, only 2% of those without insurance say they have no need for insurance.
So, at a simplistic level, the ‘choice’ argument goes down in flames. Alas, my more demanding readers will want more.

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Jul
10

Health policy — a question of philosophy or finance?

Here’s the health care consumerism dilemma in one neat, small, understandable package.
Advocates of consumerism in health care argue that forcing folks to pay for their care will make them better consumers, and thus reduce costs. Theoretically, that makes sense – if you have to pay for something you won’t get more than you need, and you’ll keep yourself healthier to keep your costs down.

Continue reading Health policy — a question of philosophy or finance?