Senate health care bill lurches from one disaster to another
Posted by sanityinjection on December 9, 2009
Last night word came that Senate Democrats have reached agreement on their version of the health care reform legislation. The big news was that the so-called “public option” is out, replaced by a “national insurance plan” to be offered by private insurers.
However, in order to win the support of liberals who had been strong supporters of the public option, the bill now includes a proposal to expand Medicare to include any individuals over 55, at their option. This is arguably almost as big a disaster as the public option would have been. Medicare today is a bureaucratic behemoth that is financially unsustainable; to take a broken program, expand it and vastly increase its costs without doing anything to fix its problems represents the worst possible public policy. Even Senator Olympia Snowe (R-ME), voted “Most Likely To Quack Like A Democrat” by her high school class, expressed concern “about the breadth and scale of this legislation, taking it in a more expansionistic approach for government’s role rather than reverse.”
The American Hospital Association was also quick to weigh in: “Adding millions of people to these programs at a time when they already severely underfund hospitals is unwise and should be opposed.”
The whole health care reform process is starting to resemble a warped sort of surgery in which the ailing patient is cut open, and instead of performing surgery, the doctors simply stuff as much feces into the body as possible and then sew it up again.