Green Room

$169 Billion…

posted at 6:00 pm on May 16, 2009 by

There has been a massive amount of chatter concerning health care coverage over the past few months. President Obama, and most of the Democratically controlled Congress, believes the solution to health care coverage is to nationalize the system. Nationalizing health insurance itself would be one thing, however they feel the need to nationalize the entire health system, 17% of our economy. Combined with the current increase in government’s size, that would place the Democrats in control of about 40 cents out of every dollar produced.

We know this is impossible to sustain. It is actually impossible to even attempt. Any part of the health care system in this country would do irreparable harm to all those involved, most importantly the patients who depend upon the finest system in the world. It therefore cannot be allowed.

The “problem” the government is attempting to solve, is the claimed 47 million Americans without health insurance. It is not that they are getting poor care, or no care, but that they have to spend their own money on insurance. As someone who has been in that position before, I don’t really see a problem. I have had to go to a “Doc-in-a-box” and shell out $75 for the visit and another $50 for my prescription. I’m a reasonably healthy guy, so no big deal. Now, when I was hospitalized for what seemed like a heart attack, that is where health insurance came in handy.

A “best of both worlds” solution is the type of health insurance I have now. For just about $225 per month (and I’m a smoker with a pre-existing condition), I have $5 million in coverage from a very well known company. Preventative care, like checkups, is completely free, however there is a $5,000 deductible. The deductible is taken care of through the $75 per month added into my Health Savings Account (HSA). The HSA is administered through a debit card that I can use on any health related expense, even aspirin bought at my local grocery store. I can use it for glasses, or to have my teeth cleaned. I have excellent coverage, for right at $300 per month. I can use any doctor, and, the best part is, my rates are guaranteed not to go up for three years.

So, if we gave the assumed 47 million Americans the same health care insurance plan I have, which costs $3,600 per year, the total hit for the taxpayers to cover is $169.2 Billion dollars. That’s it. While expensive, it is a mere drop in the bucket compared to the trillions Obama would need to spend for national health care. And since I’m sure the number is inflated, the cost will only go down. And if the government pays my health insurance company directly each month for the rates, I’m sure a “group discount” would also apply.

We do not need to spend trillions of dollars. We do not need to have our entire health care system ruined in an attempt to provide coverage to 47 million people. All we need is $169 billion or less. Would my plan work? Absolutely. Would Obama accept this plan? Never. The reason is simple, they want power and control over the entire system. They are not looking to solve a problem.

So the next time you overhear some random, Obama bumper sticker wielding Liberal talk about how we need to nationalize the health system, hit him with this number $169 billion.

Red Dot in a Red State

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If only our elected legislators…..oh, never mind. Great post. It is all about control, but it needs to come back to the people and not this system we’ve created allowed that leaves us powerless.

Rovin on May 16, 2009 at 6:35 PM

I get your point, except your math is a problem. You’d have to set a standard and a sliding scale so that the poorest person who has health insurance today isn’t penalized by being excluded from your new plan. So, at some point, it has to stop being free, and at another point, it starts costing as much to the individual as whatever they could get in the current system. Meanwhile the price gets re-adjusted by the market, and, oh yeah, a ton of people out of the (possibly mythical) 47 Mil still won’t purchase health insurance even at reduced costs, but still impact the system when they get sick. Somewhere, someone has to start paying for the new covered as well as for whatever fraction of the already-covered become newly eligible for assistance. Then there’s the problem of people whose health insurance is employer-provided…

And that’s just the beginning.

McCain had a pretty slick, relatively simple health care proposal, actually, that addressed a lot of these problems, but, needless to say, he wasn’t the greatest salesman for it.

CK MacLeod on May 16, 2009 at 6:52 PM

Response to CK MacLeod:

Thanks for the comments. There are always details to work out, my point was that if the government (read: taxpayer) completely paid for the insurance of 47 million people, the cost is far lower than anything the White House has been claiming. It would also never replace those who are currently insured.

Of course, this is not a full blown plan, and was not intended to be, just showing the absurdity in nationalizing our health care system.

The other point, is that a high deductible insurance plan combined with an HSA account saves a good deal of money and puts power back into the hands of the individual.

RedDotRedState on May 16, 2009 at 7:33 PM

Keep in mind that 15 million of the “47 million Americans without health insurance” are not “Americans” at all (unless your definition of American includes Mexicans, El Salvadorans, etc., living in the U.S. illegally). How many trillions of dollars do we want to spend to make sure that millions of illegal aliens get all their health care needs taken care of in the U.S.? How many Americans’ (the real ones) elderly parents are going to be denied that hip replacement they need because they’re “too old” to qualify for care under a socialized system where health care must be rationed. And while granny must continue to suffer the pain and immobility caused by her deteriorating hip, the system will pay for young Julio to go through yet another drug rehab program. Sound unfair? It’s what our future U.S. health care system is going to look like if we don’t stop this train.

AZCoyote on May 17, 2009 at 9:39 AM

The problem with your example about High Deductable Health Plans (HDHP) is that it requires the insured to be responsible and make informed decisions.

Teaching personal responcibility is anethma to some.

The_Livewire on May 17, 2009 at 10:39 AM

Of the “47 Million Uninsured”, if you take away illegal aliens and people uninsured because they are temporarily unemployed (so will have insurance as soon as they get a new job), only about 8 million remain. Those 8 million could probably afford the health insurance that would be available if the government would let individuals:

- shop across state lines
- buy insurance that didn’t have accupuncture and mental health as required coverages
- not have to support the legal professions constant lawsuits. If you had to pay the expenses of both sides if you LOST, then doctors wouldn’t have to have insurance to cover just fighting frivilous lawsuits.

PastorJon on May 17, 2009 at 10:54 PM